Will you provide information about algorithm updates?

Will you provide information about algorithm updates? - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

CUTTS: Ian M. in the United Kingdom asks a great question, “Are you ever going to do ‘weather reports’ like Yahoo! does for algorithm updates? Simply a confirmation that what has happened would please many SEOs, as clients might think they’ve been penalized. Your algorithm update reports years ago were wonderful.” Well, thank you for the years ago praise, but it’s sort of interesting. We used to update our index once a month, and, in 2003, we moved to update our index once per day, basically, an incremental update instead of a batch update. And we’ve only gotten more fresh since then, so we’re sort of always indexing. We’ve had a similar sort of thing with our algorithms. You know, we used to–when you’re updating once a month, you would have all those changes go live at once, but whenever you’re updating your index every day, you just–whenever a change is ready, you can push it out. So we’ve moved more from these monolithic, big Google dance updates–you know, the ones that used to be named after hurricanes–to more like a larger number of small updates. So, I think in one year, for example, we had 400 search quality changes go out. And those are changes to our algorithms that rank search results. So if you think about it, that’s more than one a day. It’s not the sort of thing where we’re going to have an update on each one or else we’d a weather report once or twice a day. But the nice thing is most of the time those changes are relatively not all that noticeable, except, you know, if you’re really, really expert or really looking under the hood. So, when we do have big changes, you know, people were talking about trust and authority earlier in this year, things like that, we’re happy to confirm that those changes take place, and we’re happy to talk about them to the degree that we can. But the fact is most of the changes that happen these days happen, you know, in smaller waves, not in huge, monolithic updates. And so it’s the sort of thing that typically you wouldnít need a weather update for each individual change. And most people probably wouldn’t notice a given individual change. We will try to continue talking about it whenever there are very large changes in our ranking, for example.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


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