Google Updates

Check for changes in the SISTRIX Visibilityindex score for any domain, at times of confirmed Google updates, for the US searchmarket:


Google Core Update (P... 2015-05-13

Beginning in May 2015 Google launched a major core algorithm update. The altered factors are unclear, therefore we also speak of a phantom update .

2014-02-06 Page Layout Algorithm Update #3
2013-10-04 Penguin Update 2.1 (#5)
2013-07-18 Panda Update #26
Payday Loan Update 2013-06-11

Google has officially launched a new search update to target “spammy queries” such as [payday loan], pornographic and other heavily spammed queries.

This update impacted roughly 0.3% of the U.S. queries, but it went as high as 4% for Turkish queries were Web spam is typically higher.

Additional information on this update
Penguin Update 2.0 2013-05-22

The Google Penguin Update 2.0 is a new, improved generation of the so called “Google Penguin” algorithm which was initially launched for the first time on 24.04.2012. This new algorithm still aims to curb webspam within the search engine result pages (SERPs).

The Penguin Update 2.0 is not the third data refresh of the algorithm-change called “Penguin”. Penguin 2.0 is  a comprehensive algorithm-change by Google, as the underlying technology has evolved significantly to identify Webspam more precisely.

Additional information on this update
2013-03-18 Panda Update #25
2013-01-22 Panda Update #24
2012-12-21 Panda Update #23
2012-11-21 Panda Update #22
2012-11-05 Panda Update #21
2012-10-09 Page Layout Algorithm Update #2
2012-10-05 Penguin Update #3
2012-09-27 Panda Update #20
Exact-Match Domain Up... 2012-09-27

This algorithm-change causes Exact-Match Domains, with low-quality content, to fall behind in the searchresults.

Additional information on this update
2012-09-18 Panda Update #19
2012-08-20 Panda Update #18
DMCA Penalty Update 2012-08-10

The “DMCA Penalty” was announced on 2012-10-08 and was subsequently released a week later. With this update, Google penalises websites that were repeatedly suspected of violating copyright laws, by moving them to the back of the searchresults.

Additional information on this update
2012-07-24 Panda Update #17
2012-06-25 Panda Update #16
2012-06-09 Panda Update #15
2012-05-26 Penguin Update #2
2012-04-27 Panda Update #14
Penguin Update 2012-04-24

The Penguin Update had the goal to further curb webspam in the searchresults (in a more radical manner).

This algorithm-change was rolled-out globally for all languages on 2012-04-24 and had a noticeable effect on the searchresults.

Google classifies “webspam” as techniques that are used by website-operators to gain as high a position as possible within the searchresults.

Additional information on this update
2012-04-19 Panda Update #13
2012-03-23 Panda Update #12
March 50-Pack Update 2012-03-15

A collection of smaller updates, all implemented in the month of March. Among others, the changes aimed at updating the algorithm for determining high quality websites (Panda) as well as changes in how linktexts are rated.

2012-02-27 Panda Update #11
Venice Update 2012-02-27

On 2012-02-27, Google announced the implementation of an algorithm-change which increased the amount of Google Places-integrations in the organic searchresults, code-named “Venice”.

Page Layout Algorithm... 2012-01-19

The Page Layout Algorithm Update (Ads Above The Fold) was a globally rolled-out change to Google’s ranking-algorithm on 2012-01-19.

From that point on, Google started to take into account the relationship between content and advertisements in the directly visible (above the fold) area of a website. This means that, if this ratio should ever come out in favor of the advertisements, a website could be penalised.

Additional information on this update
2012-01-18 Panda Update #10
2011-11-18 Panda Update #9
Freshness Update 2011-11-08

This algorithm-change saw the light-of-day at the start of November 2011 and had an effect on 6% – 10% of all searchqueries, depending on the chosen language and country. This update paved the way for Google to show newer and more up-to-date searchresults for a searchquery.

2011-10-19 Panda Update #8
2011-09-28 Panda Update #7
Expanded Sitelinks Up... 2011-08-16

On 2011-08-16, Google introduced the so-called Expanded Sitelinks to a global audience and changed the way they displayed the first search-results-page for brand queries.

Panda Update #6 (glob... 2011-08-12

On 2011-08-12, Google rolled-out the Panda Update globally for all available languages, except Chinese, Japanese and Korean.

2011-07-23 Panda Update #5
2011-06-16 Panda Update #4
2011-05-10 Panda Update #3
Panda Update #2 (eng.... 2011-04-11

The Google Panda algorithm-update was rolled-out internationally for all English searchqueries on 2011-11-04.

Panda Update #1 (eng.... 2011-02-24

The Panda Update is a filter in Google’s algorithm, which makes it possible to noticeably decrease the visibility of low-quality websites.

The initial Google Panda algorithm-update for English searchqueries was rolled-out for the US-search market on 2011-02-24.

Additional information on this update
Caffeine Update Juni 2010

Following a prolonged testing-phase of several month, Google unveiled a new system of how to index content on the web, code-named “Caffeine”. This newly created searchindex is now called Caffeine. This infrastructure-update made it possible for Google to provide approximately 50% more up-to-date searchresults than before.

May Day Update 2010-05-03

This algorithm-change was implemented between 2010-04-28 and 2010-05-03 on a global scale and was subsequently called “May Day”. This update had a massive effect on so-called Long-Tail keywords. Short-Head keywords were largely spared by the update.

Vince Update (Brand U... 2009-09-15

The Vince Update, which also became known as the Brand Update, was introduced in February of 2009, followed by a gradual, global roll-out.

Dewey Update 2008-03-31

Several Google datacenters delivered different SERP-results. It seems that and were affected.

Buffy Update Juni 2007

Matt Cutts confirmed that numerous smaller algorithm-changes were implemented under the Name Buffy, in honor of Vanessa Fox who left Google that year.

Universal Search Upda... Mai 2007

Google used the Universal Search Update to integrate their vertical searches, such as News, Videos, Images, Local and more into the traditional SERPs.

Supplemental Update November 2006

Over the course of the year 2006, Google made numerous changes to their Supplemental Index and changed the way and form in which filtered pages were handled. Towards the end of the year, Google announced that these changes were not to be seen as a penalty.

Big Daddy Update Dezember 2005

The infrastructure-update “Big Daddy”, which is comparable to the newer Caffeine Update, was a software-improvement which targeted Google’s crawling and indexing-system. The update roll-out took multiple months and received the final post-processing in March of 2006.

Additional information on this update
Google Local/Maps Upd... 2005-10-25

After introducing their Local Business Center in March of 2005, Google merged their Maps-data with the Local Business Center and thus initiated a trend-setting change for Local SEO.

Jagger Update 2005-10-15

The Jagger Update is a collection of smaller algorithm-changes that were implemented in three stages over the months of September, October and November of 2005. This Update targeted low-quality links, reciprocal links, link-farms and paid links, among others. Webmasters noticed the largest changes in October.

XML Sitemaps Update 2005-06-15

From this day on, Google gave webmasters the opportunity to upload a XML sitemap to the Google Webmaster Tools. This gave them a direct means of influencing Google’s crawling and indexing of their sites.

Personalized Search U... Juni 2005

Google started to show personalized searchresults, based on a user’s previous searches, which led to automatically customized (personal) searchresults.

Bourbon Update Mai 2005

Matt Cutts confirmed that Google implemented “something like 3.5 improvements in search quality”. It is assumed that this Google update changed the algorithm in terms of how duplicate content and non-canonical (www vs. non-www) URLs are handled.

Allegra Update Februar 2005

It is being rumored that Google implemented an algorithm-update which began to penalize “suspicious-looking” links.

Nofollow-Attribute In... Januar 2005

Google, Yahoo and Microsoft jointly introduced the nofollow-attribute as a way to fight of spam and add a quality-control mechanism for outgoing links.

Brandy Update Februar 2004

Google implemented numerous algorithm-updates, one of which was a massive expansion of their index, as well as the option to use Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI). Additionally, they started to pay increased attention to the relevance of anchor-texts. By implementing LSI, Google gained the ability to better identify link-neighborhoods.

Austin Update Januar 2004

Everything that was not influenced by the Florida Update in November of 2003 got hit by the Austin Update. This algorithm-change was also targeted at deceptive On-Page tactics, including “invisible” texts and meta-elements.

Florida Update November 2003

The “Florida” Update is considered to be one of the most important and extensive changes in the history of both Google and the entirety of the SEO-sector. A great number of websites lost visibility and ranking-positions over the course of this algorithm-update. Google used the Florida Update to penalize webmasters for their “low-quality” 90’s SEO-tactics, such as keyword-spamming, -stuffing and so forth.

Supplemental Index Up... September 2003

Google started to section off parts of the searchresults into a so-called “supplemental” index, in order to index more documents than ever before, without having to suffer any performance issues.

Fritz Update Juli 2003

The Fritz Update put an end to the monthly “Google Dance”. Google stopped updating their index once a month and instead switched over to a strategy of incremental updates. The index was now updated in parts, every day.

Esmerelda Update Juni 2003

The Esmerelda Update marks the end of the regular, monthly algorithm-changes and is likely the result of an infrastructure-change on the part of Google. From this point forward, we saw a continuous process of updates, the so-called Everflux.

Dominic Update Mai 2003

The Dominic Update drastically changed Google’s approach to counting, as well as reporting backlinks.

Cassandra Update April 2003

The algorithm-update Cassandra penalized both websites with hidden text, as well as hidden links. The massive internal linking of co-owned domains was also negatively impacted.

Boston Update Februar 2003

This algorithm-change was announced at the Search Engine Strategies (SES) in Boston and was the first Google update that received an official name. Henceforth, Google started to implement large algorithm-changes on a monthly basis. The Boston Update was a combination of multiple algorithm-changes and an extensive index-update. This gave birth to the so-called “Google-Dance”.

1st Documented Update September 2002

The first ever documented change to the Google-algorithm was implemented in September of 2002. A massive reorganization in the SERPs could be observed, even though no details were ever published.