Google Vince Update

What is the Google Vince Update?

The codename “Vince” describes a comprehensive and permanent change (Update) to Google’s ranking algorithm.

The algorithm change was announced in 2009 and soon after deployed worldwide. The influence on the German search market, for example, started to be visible in December 2009.

The namesake for this algorithm change is a Google engineer named “Vince”.

What makes this algorithm change so special?

What makes the Vince Update special is that well-known (Offline) brands suddenly rank much better for keywords with a lot of traffic, for no apparent reason.

Brand domains were severely boosted in their rankings. All these sites gaining rankings or showing up out of the blue have in common that they were not optimized by SEO-standards: the title-tag often did not even contain the keyword, as well as other attributes that speak against a “natural” ranking.

How does the Vince Update “affect” pages?

The search result visibility of established (Offline) brands increased and the brand recognition became another ranking factor.

After the algorithm change, brand websites profited on highly competitive search requests, like mobile phones, printers, wifi and so on.

Example: to the left we have the keyword and on the right the brand-domain with the ranking-change (in positions) compared to the previous week:

Table with significant changes in the ranking of brand domains

Table with significant changes in the ranking of brand domains

The Vince Update had a very positive impact on the ranking-development of brand domains. Here we have an example for the keyword [handys] (mobile phones) and the domain sonyericsson.com.

A: on December 21st 2009 the influence of the Vince Update became visible on the German search market

A: on December 21st 2009 the influence of the Vince Update became visible on the german search market

Additionally, a sudden rise in the Visibility Index of these domain is also visible. The domain da-direkt.de shows this very well:

Influence of the Google Vince Update on the Visibility of da-direkt.de

Influence of the Google Vince Update on the Visibility of da-direkt.de

Video answer from Google / Matt Cutts on the algorithm change

According to Matt Cutts, the Vince Update is more of a minor change as well as a “Trust Change” in terms of the ranking algorithm and brand domains.

According to the words of Google CEO Eric Schmidt, brands have a fundamental value for us humans:

Brands are the solution, not the problem. Brands are how you sort out the cesspool.– Google CEO Eric Schmidt

 

Brand affinity is clearly hard wired. “It is so fundamental to human existence that it’s not going away. It must have a genetic component.– Google CEO Eric Schmidt

Additional information about this topic:

CNET (citation)