I am seeing new signs of a possible, but yet, unconfirmed Google Search ranking algorithm update that seemed to touch down on Thursday, February 24th. To be honest, this is most likely unrelated to the desktop version of the page experience update that started on Thursday, February 22nd.
There is both a spike in SEO and webmaster chatter from the industry and many of the tools are showing an increase in volatility starting around February 24, 2022. I know a lot of folks will point fingers and the page experience update but like I said, that update will take several weeks to roll out and is not expected to shake up the search results much at all. So I really do not think what we are seeing with this volatility is at all related to the page experience update.
Just some recent history, we did see some minor chatter around February 14th and before that February 6th and February 1st / 2nd but those two were unusual ones. Then before that on January 22nd, January 19th and 20th, January 14th, 15th and 17th, then before that on January 11th and then it was quiet until some tremors in late December.
Here is what we are seeing across the chatter and the tools that track these updates.
The ongoing WebmasterWorld thread has several comments in the past day or so about a larger update. Some calling this a “huge” update, saying this is bigger for them than “any core update.” Others are reporting drops in 20% of their traffic, while some saying they see half of what they normally see from Google.
Here are some of those recent comments:
Huge drop in traffic. Bigger than any core update I can remember.
Here, too. Halved from G. Normal from other sources.
20% down on my side after a 10% drop last week. Let’s see how deep it goes…
I have almost identical numbers. This is absolutely extreme for a site like mine which receives very stable traffic and has been around for ages.
Our European travel site’s Google traffic (and traffic in general) were down slightly today, with most of the decline coming from Eastern, Central, and Northern Europe. I’d say that’s pretty understandable, given the circumstances.
Hmm seeing my traffic cut on half again yesterday and today, assumed everyone was busy watching the news!
I was genuinely surprised that yesterday my global site achieved precisely 100% average PVs.
Lots of my usual, targeted single PVs today with the UK much higher than normal so far, Europe lower, India and China average at the moment.
Also in these comments section there is chatter:
We’re facing same issue and our category is Clothing industry. My website traffic drop around 60%. But we don’t know its done only with this google update or anything else. So, If anyone have solutions plz guide us.
Interesting page experiance update. Both websites on same server, same design, same keywords, same speed, etc – one got -35% drop from google, another still holding.
What I see now in my niche is most of sites that rank are some random expired sites that copy and spin content around, various only videos on site with just random text. Google is doing updates, that’s okay, but what I see is that since this update it just got worst and there’s 0 relevancy, domains are super spammy. I really hope that this update is not final. But i think it was Google panda update?
Same here. It hit really hard.
Here is what the tracking tools are showing, many are showing a big swing up in volatility in the past day or so.
Mozcast was super hot:
Advanced Web Rankings:
Do you see anything on your end? Let us know in the comments.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.