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Google algorithm change history


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  • 1.  By – Piyush Khera
  • 2.  2002: Boston "Boston" (the first named update), there was a major shuffle in the Fall of 2002. Flux periods when Google performed major maintenance/index updates, coined the Google Dance. These updates would majorly shake up the search engine results page (SERP) for 3-5 days and occurred approximately 10 times per year. Fast-forward to today, updates occur between 500-600 times a year!
  • 3.  2003: Cassandra, Dominic, Esmeralda, Fritz Cassandra - April 2003 Dominic - May 2003 Esmerelda - June 2003 Fritz - July 2003 These series of updates were actually aimed at combating poor quality back links, hidden text and hidden links. Goal of delivering fresher, better results for users, Google set out to execute these new updates on a monthly basis.
  • 4.  Florida - November 2003 Some speculated the name came from the series of hurricanes that hit Florida. Florida update was like a hurricane, scooping up low-value SEO tactics into its raging cyclone. However, like Boston, Florida was by far the most noticeable and significant update at the time. It was the hardest crack down on unethical SEO tactics, like keyword stuffing, spam sites, and fishy backlinks.
  • 5.  Austin - January 2004 What Florida missed, Austin came in to clean up. Google continued to crack-down on deceptive on-page tactics, including invisible text and META-tag stuffing.
  • 6.  Bourbon – 2005 "GoogleGuy" (likely Matt Cutts) announced that Google was rolling out "something like 3.5 changes in search quality." No one was sure what 0.5 of a change was, but Webmaster World members speculated that Bourbon changed how duplicate content and non-canonical (www vs. non-www) URLs were treated.
  • 7.  Jagger - October 2005 Google released a series of updates, mostly targeted at low-quality links, including reciprocal links, link farms, and paid links. Big Daddy - December 2005 Big Daddy had Big repercussions on notorious link exchangers, link buyers and sellers.
  • 8.  Buffy - June 2007 In honour of Vanessa Fox leaving Google, the "Buffy" update was christened. No one was quite sure what happened, and Matt Cutts suggested that Buffy was just an accumulation of smaller changes. Named after the notorious link spam slayer?
  • 9.  Vince - February 2009 Matt Cutts called VInce a "minor change", but others felt it had profound, long-term implications. The update focused on promoting "authority" and "trust" throughout the SERP. SEOs reported a major update that seemed to strongly favour big brands Google named the "Vince" update after one of their engineers (Vince) who developed and executed the project.
  • 10.  Caffeine - June 2010 In 2009, a preview of Caffeine was released, and after months of testing, Google rolled out the Caffeine, Google called it “whole new web indexing system” The goal was to drastically change the search indexing infrastructure. Caffeine increasing the speed of crawling pages, speeding up how fast the search engine delivered results, the accuracy of results in relation to the search term in (according to Google) a 50% fresher index.
  • 11. Panda update seemed todirectly target contentfarms.According to Google, thisupdate affected up to 12%of search results.The update penalized lowquality sites, low qualitycontent/duplicate content;generally content deemednot valuable to the user.
  • 12.  Panda was named after one of the key Google engineers who worked on the update and made it possible, Navneet Panda. Panda 2.0 - April 11, 2011 Panda 2.1 - May 9, 2011 Panda 2.2 - June 21, 2011 Panda 2.3 - July 23, 2011 Panda Goes Global (2.4) - August 12, 2011 Panda 2.5 - September 28, 2011 Panda "Flux" - October 5, 2011
  • 13.  Panda 3.1 - November 18, 2011 Panda 3.2 - January 18, 2012 Panda 3.3 - February 27, 2012 Panda 3.4 - March 23, 2012 - Google announced another Panda update, this time via Twitter as the update was rolling out. Their public statements estimated that Panda 3.4 impacted about 1.6% of search results. Source: google-algorithm-updates-panda-3-4-rolling/ change /How-Google-Names-Its-Algorithm-Updates- Products