January 22nd Unconfirmed Google Search Ranking Update

Jan 23, 2022 - 8:11 am 22 by
Filed Under Google Updates

Google Algorithm Update

Again I am seeing signals, both a lot of chatter from the SEO community and tools lighting up around a possible but yet unconfirmed Google search ranking algorithm update. Yes, there has been a ton of unconfirmed updates in the past couple of weeks and let's add this one to the list.

Most recently we had unconfirmed Google search updates on January 19th and 20th, January 14th, 15th and 17th, then before that on January 11th and then it was quiet until some tremors in late December. So now I am seeing chatter start up on Friday, January 21st and spike through January 22nd and this morning.

It might be just some sort of update that Google didn't announce that started a week or two ago and it is still rolling out but it is hard for us to say without a statement from Google.

And like the other unconfirmed updates this month, there is both SEO industry chatter and data from the tracking tools that support this but yes, we do not have a Google confirmation about an update.

SEO Industry Chatter

Like I said above, the chatter started around Friday, January 21st and continued through Saturday January 22nd and today, Sunday January 23rd. Here is what I found at WebmasterWorld throughout this timeframe:

It's all come to a grinding halt this morning for me so far. The last 4 days have seen seen an average of 133.1% but coming up to 14 hours of my Googleday I'm struggling on 29.7%.

About the same here. I assume the update is still rolling out or twhat we are seeing is the ghost town after an update.

The lost keywords on mobile search have not returned. They do show on desktops. The page experience for mobile is good so not sure what's really going on. Any ideas would be welcomed.

update: this is only in US by the looks of it. All the 'lost' keywords show in UK and other places but have been removed from US.

I see high spikes in traffic on totally irrelevant pages on my site. This morning it looks like quality traffic is starting to pick up. The weird thing is that G drives so much traffic to very unimportant pages. Some adjustment is certainly taking place.

My main site is about weather forecast. This morning I had high traffic spikes on pages from small and irrelevant towns in Tanzania, Colombia, Chile, Kenya and many others. This is unusual. These locations are not having any particular weather events to attract so many users at the same time on the same page.

I keep seeing anomalies with high traffic right now. I don't know if it's a fix or an update.

It's pretty weird after 3 days of drops.

Something major happened because my main website dropped like a rock (25-30% in keywords and traffic) over the night. And my competitors as well. Semrush shows very depressing data and the traffic does confirm it. Looking forward to see what Google cooked this time.

Yesterday ended at 91.7% however just seemed slow all day. and again today it seems sluggish but "is it that time of year" ?!?!

One thing is for certain though, the pub / hotel site today is quiet BUT the restaurant had a great lunch service and the the "new UK norm" bars are very busy at the moment ... It's cold outside so they're all warrming-up inside :-)

Some are also suggesting that the tracking tools, like Semrush and others need to readjust for the new high levels of volatility.

Google Tracking Tools

Here is what the tracking tools are showing right now:


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Advanced Web Rankings:

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Cognitive SEO:

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So most of the tools seem pretty hot...

Are you noticing ranking changes?

Update: Glenn Gabe agrees that it might be a continuation from whatever rolled out earlier, he shared these charts:

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

Update: Semrush data had a bit of an issue:


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