On the 17th, we wrote about some webmasters who were suspecting a major update from Google. Google's Matt Cutts has now come out and said that there was a Panda refresh around the 19th. They just didn't say anything about it until now, which is interesting itself, considering they were tweeting about Panda updates before.
This latest Panda refresh came to light as Searchmetrics put out its winner and loser lists (though the firm specified that they were not the final lists) for Google's new Webspam update, which is presumably still rolling out. Cutts commented in response to Danny Sullivan's article about the lists, saying, "Hey Danny, there’s a pretty big flaw with this “winner/loser” data. Searchmetrics says that they’re comparing by looking at rankings from a week ago. We rolled out a Panda data refresh several days ago. Because of the one week window, the Searchmetrics data include not only drops because of the webspam algorithm update but also Panda-related drops. In fact, when our engineers looked at Searchmetrics’ list of 50 sites that dropped, we only saw 2-3 sites that were affected in any way by the webspam algorithm update. I wouldn’t take the Searchmetrics list as indicative of the sites that were affected by the webspam algorithm update."
@dannysullivan Searchmetrics data is a weekly diff & includes a Panda data refresh, so sites going up/down mostly aren't due to algo update.
Webmasters have had over a year to get used to the Panda update, but it is clearly still wreaking havoc. For one, here's the list of losers from Searchmetrics again:
A couple weeks ago, we wrote about DaniWeb, which managed to get hit by Google yet again, after being hit by and recovering from the Panda update multiple times over the course of the past year. The latest incident may or may not have been Panda.