Google Algorithm Update On August 28th?

Aug 29, 2012 • 9:02 am | comments (46) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google PageRank & Algorithm Updates

Google Update BrewingI am seeing some significant signs of a Google update in the WebmasterWorld forums. There is a large uptick in SEOs and webmasters talking about changing in the search rankings for their keywords.

Some are citing huge drops in referrers and rankings from Google, while others are saying they saw an 20% uptick in traffic from Google as of yesterday.

The first real post on this came in about 24 hours ago from a webmaster who said:

Small drop today for keywords with 'firm' in the combination.

HUGE drop (a lot going outside the top 100) for keywords with 'firms' in the combination.

We just had a Panda update so I doubt it is Panda related. I know we are waiting on a Penguin update. But this can be an update to Penguin, Panda or an other algorithm. It can be manual penalties, it can be a bug, it can be nothing.

I'll ping Google and update this post when I hear back.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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08/29/2012 01:31 pm

I'm seeing a very obvious increase in traffic for several large clients, two of which their traffic has increased by about 25% or so - Obviously something is going on, but at least (for once) it doesn't seem to have affected me negatively!


08/29/2012 02:12 pm

Yup. Site was clearly hit by penguin in April (dropped from page 1 to page 30 on top keywords) and then as of yesterday moved to page 2 and 3. At least I am moving in the right direction again.

Dr. Peter J. Meyers

08/29/2012 02:29 pm

Just saw yesterday's numbers for MozCast, and no sign of anything major. Started tracking some secondary metrics - domain diversity, EMD influence, PMD influence, "shrinkage" (


08/29/2012 02:45 pm

Dan, this should have happened a long time ago. I have a penguin'd site that has slowly worked its way back to page 2 for most queries. Most penguin'd sites had pages automatically thrown into panda. You can fix those issues without a penguin refresh.

josh bachynski

08/29/2012 03:35 pm

did you do any onpage keyword removal or offpage link deletions? that's how you get out of penguin - if you want more info email me

Sam Sinton

08/29/2012 03:42 pm

Must be nothing - 5 comments over 2 hours doesnt seem very "jarring and jolting" to me! Though it must be due soon!


08/29/2012 04:03 pm

There is no spoon


08/29/2012 06:19 pm

I have seen a lot of negative changes today as well, Something had to have happened last night


08/29/2012 07:52 pm

Unfortunately it was not until the 28th of August until it jumped to page 2 and 3. Ever since April 24th it was stuck at page 27-30. I got rid of any "risky" links and changed on-page layout and text back in May but nothing changed until yesterday. Before Penguin I was always on page 1 (and most of the time top listing) for about 4-5 years. Never received any notifications from google or any manual penalties either. Hopefully with next Penguin refresh I can move closer to my original position.


08/29/2012 07:55 pm

Yes, spent hundreds of hours changing entire site (just in case) and removing any "bad" links that I could find. Nothing made any difference. I was not aware of any recovery for Penguin was going on. I was informed that any recovery would be not be possible until a Penguin refresh. Maybe Barry can jump in and comment on this? Has there been Penguin recoveries?


08/29/2012 08:01 pm

I have seen a huge drop in long tails and rankings have been very unstable. For one of my keywords it can vary 8 pages up or down quite a few times within a day or two.This was after the last Panda update and traffic has been very erratic since. Overall I would say down on all my sites in traffic but a little bit up in rankings. Yesterday and today have been very quiet too but I wish their was some stability at some stage. I guess these are Jolts we were warned about...... Really losing faith in having to please Mr and Mrs Google in order to try eke a living out of the internet. You just never know what you are doing right or wrong. Tired of complaining though its all we do. Come on Matt and Your Motley crew get it fixed and working properly already so we can get on with our lives again. If your aim is to finish off all the affiliates and get PPC then be done with it already and throw us out. I would rather it be quick than a long lasting torturous death to internet marketing for the little guys.

Frank QUinn

08/29/2012 09:28 pm

I doubt it is a penguin update. My all keywords improved today..

Guy E

08/29/2012 10:18 pm

I haven't seen any drops or increases in any of our sites SERPs either - which are all competing for very competitive gambling related keywords.


08/29/2012 10:56 pm

I suppose they rollback something. Barry, did your traffic decrease lately (let's say during last 7-10 days) ? Do you see it is back now ? Interesting ... I never saw Google did a rollback.

Casey Meraz

08/29/2012 11:09 pm

I saw a spike in traffic yesterday with some of my high authority sites. Still getting more data...


08/30/2012 02:16 am

No change in traffic for me or clients in the last few days. Although a site that was doing poorly recently started doing a lot better about 7 days ago. A site that I assumed got pandalized a while back and got un pandalized at last update even though I have changed nothing. Who knows might be a roll back.


08/30/2012 02:20 am

Google is probably making slight tweaks to their recent update. It doesn't look like another full-blown Panda or Penguin update. But then again, you never know with Google.


08/30/2012 02:53 am

The only sure way to recover from Panda is to buy Adwords and that's by design. After being hit by Panda your traffic is much worst, bounce rate skyrockets, time on site drops and the visitors come there from third rate referrals. If you buy Adwords with the best keywords you can smooth over those stats, just what Google intended. That's why advertisers ("brands") were not hurt. The point is the lower the serp ranking the worse the stats are regardless of the quality of the site. And this is where Panda fails I believe. Once your down the serps you naturally get abysmal results and algorithmically is impossible to tell the quality of the site.

Winson Yeung

08/30/2012 03:01 am

I'm lucky, some of my website have improved ranking


08/30/2012 03:02 am

Stop spamming asshole. You know nothing about escaping Penguin, just what Google said.

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 03:06 am

You are correct. If you were hit by Penguin, you would not recover from Penguin until a Penguin refresh.

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 03:06 am

Traffic to this site is hard to judge. We see spikes all the time because of hot stories.

Bhupendra Shekhawat

08/30/2012 06:04 am

i think you are right .Its look like Adwords is safe house for seo.


08/30/2012 06:08 am

As a matter of interest are you able to get into Google news? If selling links does not follow Google terms. This is not meant to be an attack, it is a genuine interest in how this all works.


08/30/2012 06:22 am

@Dan I fully agreed with you it is not possible recover from penguin until new refresh, even one my was also hit by penguin, I tried all sorts of things but all proved vain.


08/30/2012 06:22 am

Me, Netmeg, Tedster and a few other WMW smart SEOs think that Google is still testing the AI learning algo.

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 09:57 am

I am. The link penalty is organic rankin gong and pagerank. My ranking in google news is very low. But I am in the index.

Rahul Mishra

08/30/2012 11:48 am

Yes, you are right.


08/30/2012 12:17 pm

What if you submit a reconsideration request (as Google said to do in the Unnatural Links message). Do you not think that provided you've cleaned your links the penalty will be removed?


08/30/2012 12:48 pm

google make everything easy, to rank for 'hot elephants', you must have anchors such as 'pink birds' or similar. Any exact matches is very bad now. stupid, but google work this way now.


08/30/2012 01:29 pm

really want to know type of update penguin or panda

James A Seibert

08/30/2012 01:35 pm

I had a huge increase starting midday on the 27th and still going on. 25% more traffic (about 10k visits). I run 150 sites and only saw 2 with major changes.


08/30/2012 02:21 pm

" Come on Matt and Your Motley crew get it fixed and working properly already so we can get on with our lives again. If your aim is to finish off all the affiliates and get PPC then be done with it already and throw us out. I would rather it be quick than a long lasting torturous death to internet marketing for the little guys." Thank you for articulating this better than anything I've seen yet.

Russ Offord

08/30/2012 02:38 pm

I recently received an email from Google and I couldn't believe my eyes when I read it. It said: "How to get your business to show up on Google" and below that it had a call to action button saying "Run an online ad" See the image attached or see my tweet about it:


08/30/2012 04:17 pm

And what did surprise you ? The only purpose of your website is to present your business. It's like a business card. Would you expect your business card would be published in your local newspaper for free ? Why Google should promote your business for free ? Buy ad space, if your website doesn't add value to the www.


08/30/2012 04:55 pm

WTF, the post disappeared again. Second time in three days. What a waste of time is this personal blog ...

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 05:15 pm



08/30/2012 05:53 pm

What what ? Posts are disappeared. Three days ago one was lost. I said nothing, glitches can happen. But today one more was lost somewhere inside this poor written script. I'm pretty sure I don't need to explain you why is this bad ) That's it )

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 05:56 pm

You mean disqus comments are gone? When was the post date and I'll check.


08/30/2012 06:01 pm

I replied Russ Offord about 30 mins prior to "WTF..." post. I saw it published, but about 30 mins later it disappeared. The same happened in the selling thread, the day before yesterday, as far as I remember.


08/30/2012 06:04 pm

And btw, did you see captcha they provide ? What year are disqus team living in ?

Barry Schwartz

08/30/2012 06:10 pm

found it, approved.

Giovanni Ibisi

08/30/2012 07:02 pm

Instead we'll call Google crooked and biased; sick FTC and DOJ on them to separate Search from Adwords and promote a non-biased search engine. Google has a conflict of interest and promotes only those that advertise (esp in commercial niches). It's illegal.

Webstats Art

08/31/2012 03:02 am

Yup! Losing long tail keyword searches. Can we really believe it when Google says they did not update but we see a change?

Tiny Malone

09/01/2012 09:44 am

I'm seeing significant drop off in longtail and "firm" related search on my sites too. Just woke up in the middle of the night and something told me it was time to check. #SEO things that make ya go hmmm...

Sachin Sharma

04/08/2013 12:12 am

HUGE drop (a lot going outside the top 100) for keywords with 'firms' in the combination. what does it mean?

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