Google confirmed a “core” update on March 7th, but volatility spiked as early as March 4th, with a second spike on March 8th, and continued for almost two weeks. This may have been multiple updates or one prolonged, rolling update. The “Brackets” name was coined by Glenn Gabe; no details were provided by Google.
MozCast confirmed unusually high SERP flux from May , but it’s unclear if this was directly related to the bugs. Google pre-announced a “site diversity” update, claiming it would improve situations where sites had more than two organic listings. Moz data showed that, while the update did marginally improve SERPs with 3-5 duplicate sites on page one, the impact was relatively small. The update measured at 97°F on MozCast and seemed to impact sites affected by previous core updates. SERP trackers registered multiple days of ranking flux, with MozCast showing early signs on October 2 and peaking at 98°F on October 4. Multiple tools registered very high ranking flux for a few days (MozCast peaked at 116° on February 7th).
Starting around August 16, SEOs began to notice a substantial increase in Google rewriting page titles in SERPs. Google later confirmed this change , and, after many complaints about result quality issues, scaled back some of the changes in September. MozCast measured very high volatility, peaking at 105.0°F, just two days after recording a temperature of 101.3°F.
Google’s broad product portfolio and size make it one of the top four influential companies in the high-tech marketplace, along with Apple, IBM, and Microsoft. Despite this myriad of products, its original search tool remains the core of its success. In 2016 Alphabet earned nearly all of its revenue from Google advertising based on users’ search requests. Responsible growth means looking beyond the demands of our industry, to consider how our work impacts the cities, sites, and countries where we operate.
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Google added Knowledge Graph functionality to non-English queries, including Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Japanese, Russian, and Italian. This update was “more than just translation” and added enhanced KG capabilities. MozCast tracked a large Friday spike (105° F), with other sources showing significant activity over the weekend. As predicted by Matt Cutts at Pubcon Las Vegas, authorship mark-up disappeared from roughly 15% of queries over a period of about a month. The fall bottomed out around December 19th, but the numbers remain volatile and have not recovered to earlier highs.