This week a Google statement shared by Search Engine Land confirmed that Google have indeed made an update to their search algorithm. The statement, however, also confirmed that the update was not related to the Panda algorithm as many industry experts had expected. Google’s statement read:
This is not a Panda update. As you know, we’re always making improvements to our search algorithms and the web is constantly evolving. We’re going to continue to work on improvements across the board.
Discussion surrounding the update has been generally subdued, but it hasn’t stopped the SEO community speculating about the effects of the update, questioning where we might expect to see shifts.
A Panda update is of course expected, but Barry Schwartz from Search Engine Roundtable noted even before Google confirmed that, “I know we are expecting a Panda update soon but if this was it, I’d expect it to be way larger.”
A recent Google Hangout with John Mueller from Google Switzerland also saw him comment on it not being Panda or Penguin twice.
And again here:
Speculation was also rife surrounding a possible boost in HTTPS URLs following a significant spike, but more than one expert has suggested that this was likely to be resultant of Wikipedia, the number one ranked site in Google moving to HTTPS recently, which led to automated tools picking it up erroneously as a new domain ranking, leading to misconceptions as to the true effects of the update.
The important message here is that whilst Google are making changes to its core ranking, it is not a major update. That being said, Panda is clearly coming, and we’ll expect to see changes in the near future.