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It’s unusual for Google to publicly announce updates to the core algorithm, but this Sunday, Google announced an update for this week through its official Twitter account, and confirmed on Monday that it will be rolled out:
Yesterday, 4th June, we measured no significant changes in the SERPs, but it looks very different today, and many domains are gaining or losing Google search visibility.
What are Google Updates?
While Google makes hundreds of small changes to the algorithm each year, there are relatively few major updates. These so-called core updates are at the heart of the ranking algorithm and can cause major shifts in Google’s search results.
The theory behind these core updates is that Google is increasingly switching the formation of search algorithms from classic man-made algorithms to machine-generated (Machine Learning) rules. You can find out more about ML and search in this blog post.
How will I know if a domain is affected?
While yesterday we were not able to measure any major changes in the SERPs, today’s data clearly shows the impact of the core update. In the daily Visibility Index of the Toolbox you can see changes from 05.06. on 06.06. :
Who are the winners?
The Core Updates produce both winners and losers. Google re-evaluates domains and adjusts their rankings accordingly. A selection of winners for the Google UK index is shown below:
|Domain||Visibility 29.05||Visibility 05.06||Gain (percent)|
It is noticeable that in this round, the breadth of affected domains is wider. News media sites are noticeable among the visibility winners of the update along with a few retail sites, health-related and images sites.
What domains lost visibility?
Since the number of total results in such an update does not change, there will always be a counter-reaction. The following examples have significantly lost visibility in the current update:
|Domain||Visibility 29.05||Visibility 05.06||Loss (percent)|
Among the losers we can see many from the “Your Money, Your Life” category. Again though, news media and retail are included which keeps the field wide.
Everything seems to be normal – and yet something is different! Not only did Google pre-announce this update for the first time, but also the field of affected domains seems to be wider in this Google Core update than in previous updates.
A significant feature of the UK changes is the crossover between dailymail.co.uk, one of the big losers, and mirror.co.uk and thesun.co.uk who are clearly on the winning side. Metro, which belongs to the Daily Mail Group, however, is in the winning list along with iNews.
The Core Update roll-out will continue through the week across the globe and the changes will be reflected in our Toolbox data.