What Is A Google Update?

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Here’s a little tip for you guys wanting to stir-up the search engine crowd: just announce on some random search-related forum that Google is conducting another update and watch the audience react much like someone yelling “Fire” in a crowded theatre.

While the above statement pokes fun at how people react to Google updates, their concern is legitimate because when Google actually posts updates, characteristics like backlink counts and PageRank scores change. Sometimes, these changes are for the better (more links), sometimes not (lowered PageRank score). When you consider how important search engine rankings are in ebusiness, it’s easy to see why people react the way they do whenever a Google update is announced.

However, there is some discussion concerning how frequently Google updates the different aspects of their search service. Well, thanks to Google engineer (and fellow Kentuckian) Matt Cutts, some of this confusion should be alleviated. In his latest post, Matt sheds some light on the inner workings of a Google update.

According to Matt’s post, Google is updating its index, which includes backlinks and PageRank on a constant basis. However, the PR and backlink updates are only exported to the public on a three-month basis, give or take. This exportation is what most people know as a Google update and it’s also the time when people get either excited or disappointed about the changes they are now privy to. Matt also indicates when these updates are released public; the cumulative affect on search engine rankings has been factored in already.

Other revelations include the fact that Google updates and crawls its index on a daily basis and whatever minor changes need to be made are done so immediately. The term Google uses to describe these continuous minor changes to its index is “everflux,” meaning Google’s index is forever in flux.

These minor changes are not considered an update by Google’s standards. Usually a change to an algorithm or the introduction of new technology quantifies the term “update” in Matt’s eyes. He goes on to say that the normal PageRank and backlink updates that hit aren’t really updates, per se. It is just Google making the various alterations visible to the public.

Whatever Google calls them, the public reacts as if they were updates and when you think about it from that point of view, it’s easy to see why. Like Matt said, when a BL or PR update is actually announced, the update portion of the process has already occurred at Google, it’s just now the results of these changes are now available to the public. Be that has it may, it will not stop people from navigating to their favorite datacenter when the next update is announced.

Chris Richardson is a search engine writer and editor for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest search news.

What Is A Google Update?
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