Major Google Search Thanksgiving '09 Update? Caffeine Related?

Nov 27, 2009 • 9:11 am | comments (11) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google PageRank & Algorithm Updates
 

Update: Matt Cutts from Google confirmed that Caffeine is live 50% of the time in the 209.85.225.103 data center. See below for more info.

There are several threads reporting major changes in the Google search results, starting yesterday. We have threads at DigitalPoint Forums, Google Webmaster Help and an updated WebmasterWorld thread.

In short, people are noticing major changes in the search results. Some believe it is a Caffeine index rolling into their search results. Some believe it is just a normal update and not Caffeine related. We do know that Matt Cutts promised not to roll out Caffeine until after the holidays and a roll out at this time would be the worst possible time for online retailers (unless you rank very well in Caffeine.

We also know Google is eventually rolling out Caffeine to a single data center, which can be why many people are noting an update. But again, it might be that these folks are on this single data center or that this is not a Caffeine update. I certainly hope this was not a mistake and Google released the Caffeine update prematurely.

The data center people are talking about now is 209.85.225.103.

People are saying that their traffic is down because of it, but some are also noting that it is/was DigitalPoint Forums, Google Webmaster Help and an updated WebmasterWorld.

Update from Matt Cutts:

My plane landed and I had time to check. 209.85.225.103 as an IP address currently hits the Caffeine data center about 50% of the time, so that's probably what the person at DP was seeing.

I think it's really risky to take a few threads and turn that into a "major Google update." For example, one of the links you pointed to was asking about the rankings for their site webtlk.com. Given links like http://74.125.47.132/search?q=cache:iwkj8P8xoSEJ:teqtonik.com/+http://teqtonik.com/&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a talking about data recovery and pointing to that site, I'm guessing that Google just got better at determining how much weight should be given to links to that site.

So 209.85.225.103 does hit the Caffeine data center more often than other IP addresses, but it's always been the plan that Caffeine would roll out at one data center (no more data centers will get Caffeine until at least January).

But I would avoid generalizing, at least as going by the one report that mentioned a specific site that I looked into. Of course, on a lot of the webmaster forums you can't tell what site they're talking about, so it's hard to do any debugging on what might have happened to individual sites there.

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Comments:

Turing's Nightmare

11/27/2009 04:04 pm

I'm oversimplifying but wouldn't social game theory dictate that google's update be timed to best serve their visitors and not timed to best serve e-commerce sites? If you keep the visitors happy, there will always be e-commerce sites for them. If you keep the e-commerce sites happy, there won't necessarily always be visitors for them. Maybe it's all the turkey and pie I ate yesterday.

Bill

11/27/2009 04:13 pm

This economy can't afford the slightest bit of drag. We'll see what the affects are after Monday.

Barry Schwartz

11/27/2009 05:56 pm

Matt Cutts of Google <a href="http://twitter.com/mattcutts/status/6117134306">tweeted</a> to me: "@rustybrick can't check on things from the airport, but the Caffeine rollout plans haven't changed (only one dc before holidays)"

Matt Cutts

11/27/2009 08:40 pm

My plane landed and I had time to check. 209.85.225.103 as an IP address currently hits the Caffeine data center about 50% of the time, so that's probably what the person at DP was seeing. I think it's really risky to take a few threads and turn that into a "major Google update." For example, one of the links you pointed to was asking about the rankings for their site webtlk.com. Given links like http://74.125.47.132/search?q=cache:iwkj8P8xoSEJ:teqtonik.com/+http://teqtonik.com/&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a talking about data recovery and pointing to that site, I'm guessing that Google just got better at determining how much weight should be given to links to that site. So 209.85.225.103 does hit the Caffeine data center more often than other IP addresses, but it's always been the plan that Caffeine would roll out at one data center (no more data centers will get Caffeine until at least January). But I would avoid generalizing, at least as going by the one report that mentioned a specific site that I looked into. Of course, on a lot of the webmaster forums you can't tell what site they're talking about, so it's hard to do any debugging on what might have happened to individual sites there.

kpaul

11/27/2009 11:55 pm

dance, google, dance!

Frank

11/28/2009 01:42 am

Actually i see the (maybe) caffeine results also on 209.85.225.104 and somtimes also on 209.85.225.105 Maybe its not caffeine or they roll it out to more than one dc - or one dc has more than one ip

Frank

11/28/2009 05:30 am

Hi. I just saw a comment by Matt Cutt involving my website (www.webtlk.com) which is not related to the website (http://74.125.47.132/search?q=cache:iwkj8P8xoSEJ:teqtonik.com/+http://teqtonik.com/&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a) I also posted on webmaster world (my nick is Frank44) http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4017090-4-30.htm Sorry if i post here but since i read Matt Cutt comment and, well, i didnt undertstand what he said, may I ask to clarify a little bit? why my site has been involved? thanks again

Dr. Jones

11/28/2009 10:11 pm

I'm loving the results from that data center. I'm just curious if those are close to what the final results are going to be, if penalties and additional rank modifications are in place. Like all webmasters and wannabe SEO's, I'm planning for the future but I don't want to be mislead by results that may not reflect the final results.

diarmuid ryan

11/30/2009 11:38 am

i for one am going to wait until the update is rolled out before making any rash decisions

Rob Abdul

11/30/2009 01:41 pm

Patience is a virtue.

Gaurav

11/30/2009 09:19 pm

It seems like Caffeine is fully rolled to India. All our team members in India can access it since yesterday. Can anyone confirm it?

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