Net66 SEO – Was that a Google Update?

I’ve heard and read a lot recently about fluctuations in a lot of different areas particularly concerning rankings and traffic. Naturally everyone assumed that there was another Google update which had caused the fluctuations in ranking and traffic. But after being questioned several times, Google responded with it’s default answer:

““We have nothing to announce at this time. We make over 500 changes to our algorithms a year, so there will always be fluctuations in our rankings in addition to normal crawling and indexing.”

Hardly helpful but with the amount of people reporting the fluctuations there has to be something going on surely?! Well there isn’t a definite yes or no and I apologise for calling you Shirley.

In the past with certain updates, Google has been very transparent when dealing with updates in the past. Remember the EMD update? Exact Match Domains (EMD) are what’s used when people want to rank for a keyword or phrase and buy a domain name with the keywords in it. For example if you wanted to rank for “Manchester SEO Company” you would want to have a domain like As the keywords are in the domain, Google would realise this domain is relevant for the keywords searched and thus rank it in the SERPS (Search Engine Ranking Pages) higher than it would if it didn’t have an EMD. This is quite clearly unfair, especially considering that the people who bought the EMDs could have an inferior site offering an inferior service.

So, Google released an update that refused to count keywords in the domain towards rankings in an effort to be fair. However there are still arguments about how effective this really was as people have claimed to see rises in rankings for EMDs afterwards.

Google has also been clear about Penguin and Panda updates in the past. Which lends weight to the argument that Google haven’t released an update otherwise they would have mentioned it.

You also need to take into consideration that last month Google announced that they would no longer be confirming Panda Updates and were integrating Panda into the algorithm itself. So have they released a new algorithm with Panda introduced in it? Or have the ran a quick Panda refresh in addition to the latest changes to the algorithm?

We can spend days and weeks debating it and never know for sure. The only facts we have at the moment are that a) people are reporting fluctuations in rankings and traffic b) Google aren’t confirming anything.

So what do you think?

Blog Post by: Greg McVey