[UPDATE 01/08/2019] Some SEO tools show a relatively higher level of volatility in the SERP. Looking at our own rankings, we saw that the average position for some keywords jumped (+73 improvement on one, +10 for another). People are starting to fear another Medic update (Search Engine Roundtable, 1st August 2019).
[UPDATE 24/07/2019] Most of the SEO tools show SERP fluctuations are now back to normal (Search Engine Roundtable, 23 July 2019). I have updated the Rank Risk Index below. You can clearly see how SERP fluctuations went back to normal starting 19th July 2019.
[UPDATE 23/07/2019] Added the Rank Risk Index by Rankranger.com to put into perspective the current, alleged Google search ranking algorithm update called ‘Maverick’. The Rank Risk Index measures ‘SERP fluctuations for 10,000+ domains and keywords’ (Rank Ranger, n/a) [accessed 23rd July 2019]
[UPDATE 22/07/2019] Again a number of major fluctuations in the search rankings has been flagged by many sources. The fluctuations have also been registered on several SEO tools. Brett Tabke from Webmasterworld.com (Webmaster World via Search Engine Roundtable, 19th July 2019) named this update ‘Maverick’ after the recent Top Gun trailer release.
[UPDATE 18/07/2019] According to a post on Webmasterworld.com (Webmaster World,16th July 2019 via Search Engine Roundtable, 17th July 2019) some more, major fluctuations were spotted on July 16th. Google has yet to confirm any change to its search ranking algorithm
There has been some chatter in the SEO community about a potential Google search ranking algorithm update.
When was the update rolled out?
The update was allegedly rolled out between July 11-12th, 2019.
Search Engine Roundtable gave the heads up to the SEO community first on July 15th (Search Engine Roundtable, July 15th).
The update hasn’t been confirmed by Google yet but it seems it affected a number of websites.
Does the Google update have a name?
Brett Tabke from Webmasterworld.com named this update ‘Maverick’ after the recent Top Gun trailer release.
What are the effects of the update?
The effects of the alleged update were huge fluctuations in the Google search rankings.
The fluctuations seem to have been flagged by several SEO tools such as Rank Ranger:
Was your website affected by the update? Did you notice any spike / drop in the rankings for the keywords that are relevant to your business?
How to check if your website was affected?
The simplest way to check whether your website rankings were affected is to enter 2-3 relevant keywords in Google and check whether your rankings have changed or not.
If you are working with an agency, they for sure use an SEO tool to keep track of fluctuations in keyword rankings.
When was the last official algorithm update?
The last, officially-confirmed algorithm update was on 3rd June 2019. The update was unconventionally announced via Twitter by Google’s Danny Sullivan. The update was named ‘June 2019 Core Update’ (Rank Ranger, 4th June 2019) [accessed 23rd July 2019].
Google made 3,200 changes to search last year
Are you surprised by the recent, not-yet-confirmed Google search ranking algorithm update?
Did you know that Google made 3,200 changes to its search ranking algorithm last year (Search Engine Land, July 15th)?
In 2010, Google ‘only’ made 350-400 changes to its search ranking algorithm.
Now more than ever before SEO is important to keep up to date with Google changes.
How Google makes changes to search results
Google doesn’t make changes manually and doesn’t look at individual search queries.
They make algorithmic changes that apply to a broad range of searches.
In brief, the process is the following:
- First the team at Google identifies potential areas for improvement
- Based on their research, they find solutions to improve the specific problem
- After they find the solution, they test it
- This is the most important point. In order for the solution to be rolled out, it needs to provide a net positive for a large number of search results
- Once that is confirmed, Google launches the algorithmic change
What is the last change made by Google?
One of the last changes being rolled out in beta testing is some shareable search results snippets.
— Tom Pool (@cptntommy) July 15, 2019
Were your website rankings affected in the last few days? Did you notice anything else that is not flagged in this article? Feel free to flag it in the comments below or reach out for questions via our contact form (top right) or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Listen to the audio version of the article:
Audio file courtesy of Text2Speech.org
Featured image by Christian Wiediger (Unsplash, n/a) [accessed on July 16th, 2019]