Google Preparing Large Update? Shifts On May 2nd & 7th

May 9, 2014 • 8:45 am | comments (56) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google PageRank & Algorithm Updates

Google Update BrewingI mentioned there was some chatter about a Google update on May 2nd but now we are seeing even more chatter and signs of flux in the Google search results on May 7th.

These signs of shifts in rankings, spikes in crawl rates, often, but not always, are early warning signs of a major Google update happening in the near future.

Here are flux/volatility charts from MozCast,, SearchMetrics and Algoroo:





All show similar patterns for the most part.

The chatter in the forums, including the ongoing WebmasterWorld thread follow these patterns also.

I did ask Matt Cutts if there was an update, but no response yet:

I would not be surprised if Google launches something big soon on the algorithm side. It seems they are testing something big.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

Update: Google told us nothing is going on and there was no update.

Previous story: Bing Algorithm Update On May 5th?



05/09/2014 12:52 pm

I hope this upcoming update would deliver change to something a lot better to my blog.

Gaurav Srivastava

05/09/2014 12:57 pm

Hope, major Panda is coming to clean low quality content site again.. hahaha.. :(


05/09/2014 01:52 pm

With any luck it finally gets rid of double listings for companies, beyond a joke at this stage.

Julio Vasquez

05/09/2014 02:04 pm

Estoy seguro que habrá una actualización, pinguin 3.0. eso ayudara a los que fueron afectados por pinguin 2.0 siempre y cuando arreglaron el problema


05/09/2014 02:55 pm

Penguin 1.0 May 25, 2012 Penguin 2.0 May 10, 2013 Penguin 3.0...soon ???


05/09/2014 03:00 pm

I agree with Tian, A Penguin should be due any time now I would think...

Abdul Wahab

05/09/2014 03:12 pm

I am noticing slight increase in google traffic since May 1, Without performing any noticeable action.. but that's not a spike.


05/09/2014 03:26 pm

We had a major upswing in ranking increases across the board last week according to our weekly moz ranking reports. We received this week's reports last night and all of those increases have reverted back. First time I've seen this type of weekly shift in rankings for our sites.


05/09/2014 03:43 pm

you are right , same here and it's reverting back.


05/09/2014 03:59 pm

We haven't noticed anything unusual recently, but your article and the data from the statistics really bring up the question if Google is preparing something. Hopefully, they will get back to you on with an answer. Thanks for sharing this information.


05/09/2014 04:10 pm

I noticed huge flcutuation in trafic on many of my websites. Indeed something big is happening now


05/09/2014 04:18 pm

They can't really... It balances out the fact that the spammers typically throw 10 different websites at a niche keyword to take as much of the first page as possible. Letting the nonspammers have 2 results per domain is the reward for playing fair. The double listings is even documented in their search appliance... it can be disabled by adding filter=0 to the search URL params.


05/09/2014 04:48 pm

Not seeing anything noteworthy in rankings... everything is unchanged.


05/09/2014 04:53 pm

If Chicken Little Webmaster sees his traffic is up or down, it must be an algo change!!! Quick, to the Google hotline phone to confirm!


05/09/2014 05:15 pm

Affiliate spam link

Ralph Slate

05/09/2014 05:46 pm

Penguin 1.0 was April 25, 2012.

Matt Cutts

05/09/2014 06:16 pm

And Penguin 2.0 was May 22, 2013.

Matt Cutts

05/09/2014 06:56 pm

Don't believe him! He's an impostor!


05/09/2014 08:43 pm

I hope they make some change because they can't get much worse with their algorithm now. I am seeing many sites ranking high niche that have no business being on page one. Several great sites that used to be in the top 10 are now on page 3 or 4.

John Britsios

05/09/2014 11:03 pm

Those days there were huge fluxes in for the "contractor mortgages" industry.


05/09/2014 11:54 pm

Famous last words.

Jan Chilton

05/10/2014 06:47 am

The worst thing Google's done is in the real estate industry. No matter what city + real estate you put into search, all you get is Trulia, Zillow, and Realtor (dot com) Unless the searcher scrolls way down they will never see the local agencies that have the neighborhood information. Instead they get stuck in the big three "directories" that sell leads to agents that can't or won't put a lot of work into their own website. That is a sorry state of affairs for the public wanting to buy or sell a home. These sites have a lot of inaccurate information and outdated listings as well.


05/10/2014 06:51 am

my website is back again on the first page from today, was an update?


05/10/2014 08:46 am

thanks, you're right, my bad.

sunil kumar

05/10/2014 11:21 am

got fluctuation in traffic on my website between may 2 and may 7th.

Atul Mittal

05/10/2014 11:35 am

Even if they are coming with an update, I am secure as far as I am following Google guidelines. Thanks for sharing

Durant Imboden

05/10/2014 02:57 pm

No change here. Then again, Google often says "This update affects X percent of search queries," so if you're in the percentage who aren't affected, you may not even notice an update.


05/10/2014 05:52 pm

I feel the sites they have screwed the most are UGC sites like forums.


05/10/2014 08:10 pm

I second that... My board (no spam at all)... fubar since 2013, now another hit since 5 of May! My other domains also suffered since 1st of May! No recovery after the 4 days long week-end!

Henry Mangult

05/10/2014 11:13 pm

Nothing noticeable from this end. We sale in social platforms and email marketing. From my experience there was change always in the beginning of July.


05/11/2014 09:40 pm

I saw an enormous spike in UK traffic over the past several days - from a couple hundred UK visitors per day to around 2,000 now. I have not updated the site in almost a year and there is no other reasonable explanation other than a Google algorithm change. Perhaps they are rolling out the update in smaller markets first before rolling out the US Algorithm?


05/11/2014 10:21 pm

Oh wow, got to take a look at that.

Bilal Sarwari

05/12/2014 06:06 am

Its look some updates on 9th May also or maybe its only with me, one of my site sidewide action removed and change to partial action without reconsideration request. site is now ranking with its brand name and traffic also start coming from Google.


05/12/2014 07:03 am

Check again! Rankings have resumed


05/12/2014 07:04 am

All the rankings have resumed :) Two hours ago the shuffle brought an improvement !

Hanoi Guide

05/12/2014 07:31 am

My site is now back rankings. Maybe Google running test for new algorithms.


05/12/2014 07:34 am

@rustybrick:disqus Any reply from Matt for your tweet??

Junaid Jaffery

05/12/2014 08:16 am

its true that these reviews and comparisons sites are always on top and no matters how outdated information they shows to the users. They have gained the popularity and brand and its becoming more difficult to rank for small companies after every Google update.

Ozzy Musa

05/12/2014 09:45 am

Yeah this ia when I worry. I think I will start becoming an adwords customer so I can stay in my current safe ranking seriously im sick od the ups and downs. I see myself coming back to seroundtable to see what Barry has discovered. I want peace of mind and not constantly worrying about a possible penalty drop I may get for no reason as happened to me in the past.

Barry Schwartz

05/12/2014 09:53 am


Ashutosh R

05/12/2014 12:13 pm

Can it be some softer Panda update for small webmasters Matt was talking about? Like talked here as well:

Yo Mamma

05/12/2014 12:14 pm

Yes, me too. I don't mind paying Google $400 a day to be competitive with their paid backlinks and I don't mind paying for clicks I don't want. Like the "pink Cadillac" example I gave - Sarcasm. Google can go eat toad

Yo Mamma

05/12/2014 12:16 pm

Maybe "Durant Imboden" should ask for an answer. Geez, knowing every little change Google makes sure makes life so much easier

Yo Mamma

05/12/2014 12:19 pm

Seal trumps Penguin


05/12/2014 12:43 pm

I Don't know what is going on GOOGLE'S Mind or say MATT' mind. They don't want to survive us...........

Thomas Lartin

05/12/2014 01:09 pm

I have been building one of my websites in a totally white hat way and that site had a huge boost on that day, I used to be afraid of update and now I look forward to them.

Muhammad Afzal

05/12/2014 01:26 pm

some people in my gathering said. barry's blog are pointing towards a big update from Google as we red before on Matt Cutts Blog his last article... he mentioned 30 days word. that ends on 30th March, but when official announcement could be seen on matt cutts blog. let see. my all clients are being treated as White HAT approaches in SEO. i mentioned many helpful contents for users looking for SEO Companies...

Yo Mamma

05/12/2014 01:43 pm

Little naive me thinks. Google doesn't just hate your old spammy website, Google hates YOU, because you have been identified as a SPAMMER, which in Google's eyes is a lazy, freeloading bum, that needs to be forever squashed. This in mind, you need to create a completely NEW profile, character, identity, dye your hair, get a facial replant, move to Afghanistan, join the Taliban, get a new hosting company, and a new computer, with a new modem and create all new email accounts. Then pretend to be someone else. Only THEN do you have a slim chance of success Alternatively, pay Google $400 a day for their authorized backlinks

Thomas Lartin

05/12/2014 01:53 pm

I am trying to read through your sarcasm for what the actual point of what you said was, lol. I have never had any manual spam messages from Google, but their algorithmic changes hurt when they started enforcing anchor text at one time. I think your point is that eventually I shouldn't look forward to any updates because I will have to pay Google for results. It is either that or they burned you pretty badly already..

Freedom Jackson

05/12/2014 04:26 pm

organic seo is over rated referral traffic leads to sales

Yo Mamma

05/12/2014 04:27 pm

Don't take it personal. Google paints with broad brush strokes. Badness follows the author so just redirecting your old site to your 'good site' or just creating a new site on a new hosting platform, won't help. Yes my sarcasm is the lowest form of whit - Google is just out of control. The rest of the world just is doing business as per usual PS> No manual actions warnings - lol Maybe you didn't get the memo. Google isn't your honest, caring partner we all love and yearn for in a big daddy figure

Thomas Lartin

05/12/2014 04:39 pm

Ya, trust me I am glad I am not in the doghouse with them. I know a lot of people like to get on Google but in the end (at this very moment these practices help me personally) if they don't go around giving these spam penalties to people it would make me want to start juicing up like other people are doing right now with Black Hat techniques. Should these people be banned for life? I do understand your point here, at the same time I understand why they do it too though.

Barry Schwartz

05/13/2014 12:11 pm

Google denied any update, more details at

Wong Ngaur

05/14/2014 11:01 am

This is my way to cope algoritm

Krishna Moorthi

05/20/2014 08:56 pm

Better for learning Google and Yandex in cleaning issues and penalties, which gives many turns? Discriminate even search results within these results, or self-generated content. The rest was and what we were doing to position our pages...

Jan Chilton

05/24/2014 08:43 am

Even the large companies don't rank. Things like Century 21 or the Remax corporate site have more right to rank for real estate than Trulia and Zillow! I won't argue with because they are the National Board of Realtors...but even they have little or no direct information about the area. They just sell the leads to the agents.

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