Google Algorithm Updates - 2020 Ongoing Discussion

bernard

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Something going on? I see falls across multiple sites, small movements, but some falling to historic lows.
 
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Tbh, I'd be surprised if there weren't in some industries as, whether you like it or not, the current situation potentially changes search activity (and thus search engine profitability).

To use travel as an example, are former ranking metrics still as valid as they were? Should the results change more towards future gratification (research, images, video) rather than immediate satisfaction (book now, discount vacations)? Should local (as in own country/state) be prioritised over long-distance (spring break/cruises)? Does that mean that local sites should be ranked better than generic global sites? Etc.
 

bernard

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So it was only the pre-quakes I was feeling. Sheeeeiiiit.
 
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Well it just hit, I have had 2 sites drop and 2 sites rise and a few relatively stable. I cant see any consistency in it sites that dropped were clean and pbn and sites that rose were clean and pbn mixed so from my portfolio I cant really gleam any insights.
 

bernard

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My main site was hit hard again, red arrows for pretty much all keywords. Looks like a repeat of the Nov 6 update, whatever that was. I was doing well, record traffic. Hmmm...

My other sites thankfully gained or stayed, if there is not more to come. Good that they're pulling more weight now.

I do expect a correction, since these first results seem quite extreme in shuffling things around.

I would like to know what exactly it is the Nov 6 and this update doesn't like about my site, while not minding the other sites.
 
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My main sites seem relatively untouched for now. But a site I recently bought (last week) appears to be down 30%-40%. Bugger
 
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Doing a core update during a pandemic... These dudes are something else. I was fucked btw (50% down, if it keeps going down I'll run out of business).

The only thing that gives me hope right now is that I see friking Pinterest pins all over the search results, and that really shouldn't be sustainable.
 
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bernard

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Some keywords are really plummeting here, that will make it possible to isolate and analyze. Big time intent changes or maybe it is using some older data, where these pages MIGHT have had some technical issues. I actually think this is possible. At least some pages dropping now had issues with not loading some weeks ago, but I fixed it. Could it be some kind of refresh?

Over the last 6 months, I've been considering if for some keywords, pagespeed and being SHORT, is a ranking factor or rather, an intent fullfillment type. Intent type = give it to me short and fast?

I've taken this to mean somewhat of a Wikipedia effect, for broad term keywords, like a short, to the point summary, maybe with inlinks to Test, Cheap, Review, type articles.

The challenge is of course to hit the right semantic combination on those short articles, because just throwing out 500 random words with keywords, probably is not going to cut it.
 

eliquid

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It's impacting terms with lower search volumes. This could be a for a lot of reasons ( non-brand, longtails, etc )

This is why SERPWoo was built. Many have tried to copy our Volatility Stats, but none of them break it down like us.

While some people think we HARP and PUSH SERPWoo a lot, there is a reason for it. It helps you understand SEO better.










Notice how the higher search volume keywords didn't get impacted with change as much?

The lower search volume ones got heavily impacted. I'm looking at 50,000 and under having the most change.

People with SERPWoo get this data. They are able to react in real-time the same day.

Other SEOs and competitor tools will be scratching their heads for a while....
 
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Only as long as you speak highly of SerpWoo and lowly of SEMRush. Word's starting in "M" and ending in "Z" are not to be uttered. "A" and "href" best only be in context of link destinations...

I work with a massive site with tons of shitty pages and technical issues. Had a bunch of hyper-thin pages for extreme long tails, think variants of a product. 301'd them into the next level up (think original copy of product).. oddly never saw much movement but this week did notice a bunch of these super long tails that had the 301's popping in rank, like Google just now discovered the 301s.

Not saying this is an algo update change, just sharing one unusual thing I noticed coinciding at around the same time as the update.
 
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I noticed referrals from appen.io/assingments today, which I believe is appen.com, one company that Google uses to check the quality of its search results. The referrals started around the end of April and have visited just 5 fairly high traffic pages out of a 1K page site. 5 times each page. My visibility has increased with this most recent update.
 

CCarter

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I noticed referrals from appen.io/assingments today, which I believe is appen.com, one company that Google uses to check the quality of its search results. The referrals started around the end of April and have visited just 5 fairly high traffic pages out of a 1K page site. 5 times each page. My visibility has increased with this most recent update.

Seeing this as well today. Traffic is up slightly after the last update.
 

bernard

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Seeing this as well today. Traffic is up slightly after the last update.
Typical bounce back, aka turning back the dials on whatever thing they messed with. Google updates are rather predictable at this point, if not easy to solve for.

What happens next is that I'll once again try to figure out why this particular site isn't as popular with Google as some of my newer sites. Then I'll rise slowly in the serps again, maybe surpassing my former levels, but then be hit again with some major factor, that I just can't figure out.

This is the problem, when you have a site you began working on, when you were still learning. There are mistakes in there, that might not be easily fixable.
 

secretagentdad

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Keyword sheeter got crushed on May 5th.

Ranking for basically nothing but brand terms now.

No more rankings for small topical sites with little history lol.

 
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Keyword sheeter got crushed on May 5th.

Ranking for basically nothing but brand terms now.

No more rankings for small topical sites with little history lol.

It may recover, I have a few sites that were hit also, dropped out of 100. Some came back, not to the previous positions but still decent.

For me, the pattern for the hit is link authority, the sites stable during the update were more powerful. I had better and more content on the sites hit but the link profile was not as strong.
 
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Im completely confused since one of my sites that jumped up had no authority a dr of 1, and only 4 backlinks its now at 500 visits a day #1 for a bunch of pages. This specific example has completely confused me on the authority site winning theory.
 

Stones

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I was thinking one of the factors might be a reweighting of branded search traffic / dwell time. In one niche I keep an eye on, sites with brick and mortar locations saw a significant increase in visibility. You have a reasonable percentage of consumers who are stuck at home and unable to visit the shop in person now doing branded searches and shopping online.

Many of the sites that got the boost had pretty ordinary link profiles but the domains followed a certain pattern. Niche keyword + store/shop with minor variations. This doesn't fit with the observations of @tyealia and @ianovici and more research needed of course
 
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@Stones I've also seen some strange things that just can't be justified by logic. In one big niche related to health, an exact match ranks #1, it did not rank in the top 50 before. It has garbage links(like really some of the worst possible), redirects, and it kills the competition in a big way.

The competition is huge authority sites that have really good content on that keyword, long, lots of links to those pages. This site that I'm talking about has shitty content. I can not explain it in any logical way.
 
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Yes Floate recently mentioned in a YouTube video that he thinks it could of been about authority, lack of links to pages & over-optimization.

The over-optimization theory could fit in with the outlier site I have thats killing it while being a 3 month old brand new domain with 4 links. I have about 30 articles of 2.5k words each and its the only site in my portfolio I did not use Surfer SEO on or do any on-page optimization for, again too small a sample size but its the only difference I am seeing between my other sites. Cant wait until some studies come out from the bigger testers in seo
 

Ryuzaki

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The main pattern I'm seeing is the same thing we see every time. @secretagentdad's screenshot above shows it perfectly. His clicks in the SERPs didn't decrease and perhaps increased, but his impressions decreased.

This is explained by the fact that there's always a window of time between updates where a page can rank for crazy amounts of long-tails that it shouldn't be. And then some offline relevancy calculation is done and the data is merged in and you lose all of that "extra free traffic," which is how it should be seen.

The way I look at core updates is, in between them you have a chance to take 2 steps forward, then the update takes you 1 step back. And in that way you rollercoaster your way forward with an upwards trend.

The challenge for Google is to rely on domain authority and age to block out spammers, but they also can't rely too much on those factors or there won't be any diversity in the SERPs. Not to mention 99.99% of individual pages never get a backlink, but are probably worth ranking.

When they try to strike that balance there's always discombobulation where stuff that shouldn't rank can rank for a while, and then they adjust course and end up fixing it. When they balance the authority dial, low-quality, low-authority stuff can sneak in while they try to let high-quality, low-authority stuff rank. Then Panda comes through and cleans it up. Then low-quality, mid-authority (spam links) stuff sneaks in and Penguin cleans it up.

My belief is it's a moving target that moves in a circle, purposefully to bring different results to the SERPs and allow them to test micro-factors and give searchers a breath of fresh air, give spammers a target to aim at that will soon move again (a honeypot), and give the illusion of progress, when really the product is nearing perfect. This is why they're enhancing the SERPs with all these custom features now, because there's not much more to do to satisfy users in the ranking department.
 

secretagentdad

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I kind of agree but my clicks are up cuz I'm doing a bunch of brand building.