Many SEOs who have large sets of clients are able to see a change with Google coming based on tracking rankings and web analytics on mass sets. Often I can see the same based on the Google webmaster and SEO forums starting up again with complaints and questions. A WebmasterWorld and lots of threads in the Google Webmaster Help forums have been complaining in the past 24 hours or so.
We see people complaining about the normal things. Such as their sites are being delisted or their rankings have dropped significantly. We see this a lot but there seems to be a larger spike of complaints in the past 24 hours.
That WebmasterWorld thread has several webmasters who watch Google's search results like a hawk all very upset. Here are some quotes:
Wow! I was hoping I was wrong...I hate to sound like Chicken Little, and not to swerve off topic, but perhaps the sky really IS falling. This is all winding up to a perfect storm of economic disaster. Governments perpetuating wars, an economic drought that rivals the Great Depression and from what the market news says, another on the way, high fuel prices, wacky weather, tax increases, government uncertainty and the general inability to cooperate and get anything positive accomplished. To top it all off, the last bastion of free enterprise, the internet, is clearly broken. It's not just Google either.
Nah. It's not worse. We're just more aware of what isn't working, thanks in large measure to the WWW.
The beings that make things "run smoothy" are sent to other planets. Humankind is an entirely different experiment.
The thing is, it seems like many of these SEOs put all their eggs in one basic, the organic results. They knew they shouldn't have but they were making good money and didn't have time to explore new referrer options until it dried up.
Google will change their algorithms, ranking factors, how they index and webmasters always get hit by it. Be prepared.