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Small Google Search Ranking Algorithm Update On January 27th

There may have been a smaller and unconfirmed Google search ranking algorithm update that touched down around January 26th but mostly felt on January 27th. I was going to report on it yesterday but more important information came out, so I held this until today. Again, this seems like a smaller update but if you were hit by it, you probably felt it in a big way.

I first notice this when reviewing the ongoing WebmasterWorld thread where folks began noticing weird crawling changes on January 26th and on 27th they noticed ranking fluctuations. Here are some of those comments:

Does anyone experiencing slow index crawls? Previously, my pages are being indexed within hours, but now 3-5 days before being indexed. Am I the only one experiencing this?

Has anyone noticed a small drop in traffic today? Things are very quiet right now. This is not normal.

Not by a small amount…my USA traffic dropped 21% yesterday and is starting the morning way down. That’s after three weeks of good stable traffic, so definitely not normal to drop 21% in one day no. My SERPS are not really changing much at all. Non-USA traffic is stable or increasing…traffic from the UK has been particularly on fire for me this entire month of January.

Some tech sites reported around 20-30% drop in North American traffic. USA contributes the most (70-90%) in that traffic lot. And also some gaming & entertainment sites who gets 5-10% US traffic has become almost zero.

Was there a Google search engine update within the past two days? I just saw my organic search engine traffic jump 10,000 pages in one day.

I believe there must have been some sort of update because my traffic has been much stronger all month but yesterday and today USA traffic has fallen off a cliff. At 2pm EST my USA traffic is down 43%. Hopefully this is temporary, but more likely Google has just cycled which sites are getting traffic.

Something happened in the last 24 hours – I’m seeing downturn and small shift on main keywords since around 10am this morning UK time. There are updates every week right now, everything is shifting on a weekly basis – up, down, surges, dips, constantly.

Seems like another possible update may be brewing again. Conversions dropped, traffic is stable but not good quality traffic.

Looks like there is very big update or big bug in Norway right now for all casino keywords. All low quality sites ranking top 3 and a lot spam scraper sites ranking high

Most of this chatter was from Wednesday, January 27th and then pretty much died out since then.

The tools are also showing changes on or around the 27th, so the chatter does have tracking tool support.

Mozcast:

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SEMRush:

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RankRanger:

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SERPMetrics:

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Algoroo:

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So if you saw ranking and/or traffic changes from your Google organic positions around January 27th, you are not alone.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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