What exactly is going on in the Google SERPs?

Nowadays if you are taking the Keyword Density reports for popular SEO forums, you may be seeing a significant raise in the Ratio for phrases like “Google Index Updates”, “Google SERPs refresh”, “Google data refresh”, “my ranks went down”, “my site get disappeared” or more similar. What is happening all over? Is that an Algorithm update? Is that just a Data Refresh? Is that a Index update? Or tell me what exactly are these terms stand for? How they are related to my Ranks and What I am supposed to do when such fluctuations are visible? I know there are lot more questions worrying you, don’t get panic unnecessarily , let us analyze the situation.

What exactly is going on in the Google SERPs (Search Engine Ranking Pages)?

It’s can be a “Refresh”, not an “Update” – Mattcutts. What is the difference? Read on.

There are Three major factors he described at his blog which an be a reason behind a fluctuation in the Google SERPs.

  1. Algorithm Update:
  2. Data Refresh:
    1. Index Update:

Why I intended the third one (i.e; Index Update), that might be the sudden question get raised in your mind. I will explain it in the coming paragraphs.

  1. Algorithm Update: As the name indicates, whenever Google go with an update in their Sorting Algorithms, switch over to a new infrastructure we call it as an Algorithm Update. This results in major changes in the SERPs and may the fluctuations last for several weeks all over the globe. But this is not a frequent one in nature, so it is easy to track due to the major rolling over the data.
  2. Data Refresh: When the Data refreshes within the Same Algorithm. When you are seeing a new ToolBar pR, or Google displays new counts for your Backlinks, all these can be classified under this term – Data Refresh. Doesn’t this mean that before the Refresh Google were using your Old figures to Sort out the Ranks. They have already factored those new links or figured the latest PageRank according to that, so Data Refresh is not an Update, but just a Refresh – it’s just already-factored-in data being exported visibly for the first time in a while. This step is also not so frequent – but yes, it is frequent while comparing it with an Algorithm Update – the Historical Trends show it as Quarterly. People do notices these updates, if they are tracking these factors historically.
    1. Index Update: This is a part of Data Refresh itself – hope you got the answer. The name Index Update is a little confusing one, actually it is not an Update but Refreshing each DataCenters randomly with the New Web Index. The SERPs changes are very low compare to the above to steps. Before 2003, the frequency of Index Updates was in Monthly basis, and most of us are remembering the term “Google Dance” which was used to denote these Index Updates. In 2003 Google increased the frequency of Index updates and nowadays it’s something like a daily process (or more faster) and the new term replaced the Google Dance is “EverFlux”. So this stage is no more being noticed by Common people, only the geeks are.

Most data refreshes are index updates, although occasionally a data refresh will happen outside of the day-to-day index updates. The current changes visible to the Geeks are nothing but Google increased the frequency of these Index Updates recently, says (guesses) Matt.
A Word from the Author:

This is actually a confusing one, whether to rely on Matt’s words or there is no other visible options other than your own analysis. Found a post at Seo-Scoop by DazzlinDonna – Google Index Updates – read about her thoughts there regarding this update. I am not seeing much fluctuations for my websites – I do reside in India – nor any Traffic Down – my major visitors are from US and Europe -. So what I am understanding is this is just an Index Update – am not sure whether the naking is correct or what – and nothing much changes happened in my pages. So be patient and don’t be panic on speculations, track down your Ranks and Traffics and if you are seeing No Too Much of Fluctuations. These are Holidays and unless you are targeting the seasonal sales, you may be receiving a low rate of Traffic in the upcoming week.

Happy Holidays…..!!!

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