Google Search Ranking Algorithm Update May 19th & 20th - Not Confirmed

May 20, 2021 - 8:01 am 14 by
Filed Under Google Updates

Google Core Update

I seem like a broken record but for the past several weeks the Google Search ranking volatility has been off the charts. And yesterday and today are no different with a huge amount of SEO chatter from the forums and most of the tracking tools supporting that chatter. It looks like we had another Google Search ranking update around May 19th and May 20th.

There has been significant chatter starting yesterday, May 19th, at WebmasterWorld and the tools are all lighting up. This would make three or four unconfirmed updates this month of May, in the first 20 days. Compare that to April where we maybe had one unconfirmed update? March was more like six of these unconfirmed updates. Just check my Google updates category to see when I reported on these updates. Keep in mind, I just reported on an unconfirmed update this past Sunday.

SEO Update Chatter

Here is the chatter from obsessed SEOs who track Google changes like a hawk at the WebmasterWorld forums. The chatter spiked up on May 19th:

Has anyone seen better USA traffic levels?

Yesterday I was at 66% of average and late in the day the USA just retained its #1 position.

Today US traffic is already looking better with nearly 3 hours to run and at 67%.

UK sites are all performing extremely well at 160-200%.

No..USA traffic levels have never been worse.

My sites carry content that is of interest to millions of first and second-generation immigrants to the US and Canada from a certain part of the world, as well as those who did not migrate. Feels like whatever geotargeting they're doing in SERPs, Discover and News has decided that the content isn't relevant to those users in the US. Similiar (and clearly subpar) content from US sites (or sites that cover other US-centric topics) are being shown instead.

USA traffic was better's 9pm and I am -11% compared to the last four Tuesdays (already much lower since mid-March). The 2pm pattern was in full effect 2pm sharp traffic dropped 75% and stayed almost nil for four hours until 6pm. I am seeing this happening mostly on weekdays. @renatoviera has also seen the 2pm drop pattern.

We're also seeing major drops across the board with slow recoveries. Mostly non-US sites. US-based clients have stayed the course.

I am 31% down from last year. It appears news sites are taking my keywords and other smaller spammy sites, dropping my traffic by 10% every month. Not good considering I am the niche site for the last 15 years - that is much more informative information for the reader and a better user experience.

This is ridiculous...starting my day with -70% USA traffic and it's already 10:30am. Google is determined to destroy all of our businesses!

I'm seeing this upward step pattern all day followed by a huge drop in traffic on a regular basis now. It's totally abnormal, before my traffic was spread more evenly all day long. Is anyone else seeing this pattern?:

Definite movement here in the UK today. It looks like relevance has had a boost - here's hoping.

So far my global site has seen a steady daily improvement this week:

Monday 65.8% Tuesday 71.4% Wednesday 77.4%

The USA has regained its #1 position albeit with traffic still down 28.25%

Something doesn't seem right... Google is ranking my category page and homepage for two keywords instead of the actual article.

Ewdison Then the publisher of SlashGear, Android Community and more publications wrote:

Tracking Tools

Like I said, most of the tracking tools are also showing huge changes.


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Cognitive SEO:

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Advanced Web Rankings:

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As you know, some of the tools will likely update later today and I suspect to see from those tools more volatility reported. I may update the charts above later in the day. Today seems "hotter" than yesterday so far.

How has your month been with your Google organic traffic and rankings?

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.


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