Google roles out its search engine’s algorithm updates at regular intervals to tackle vulnerabilities and identify techniques which do not confine to Google Webmasters Guidelines. Major Updates occur around once an year while minor changes are done around 500–600 times a year. Some of the major updates are –

1. Google RankBrain :- (Revealed on 26th October 2015)

RankBrain is a Machine Learning Artificial Intelligence algorithm which improved keyword search results based upon user’s intent. Machine Learning is a process by which computer teaches how to do a specific task by itself, rather than being taught by human being. Through AL, Search engine acts smart as human beings by understanding real world problems and solving it.

Using above principle, RankBrain interprets users’s search keywords that do not match the exact words they are searching for.

2. Google Pigeon Update :- (Revealed on 24th July 2014)

Google Pigeon Update provided more relevant, precise results based upon user’s location and other geographical factors. Due to this Local SEO became prominent and Google My Business became an essential ingredient which shows entities on map based upon three factors.

(1). Relevance
(2). Searcher Distance
(3). Prominence

So, NAP(Name, Address and phone number) Consistency is the major factor to have an edge over your competitors.

3. Google Panda Update :- (Revealed on 17th July 2015)

Google Panda update imposed penalty on sites with low quality, spammy or thin content. Moreover, websites with Keyword Stuffing, Poor User Experience and plagiarism had to pay price.

Things to Avoid :-

(1) Duplicate Content (use Copyscape)
(2) Plagiarism
(3) Keyword Stuffing

4. Google Penguin :- (Revealed on 23rd September 2016)

Google Penguin deals with link quality and penalize those sites which purchase backlinks from third party sites. Also, Websites which don’t follow Google Webmasters guidelines have to face the music.

Disavow Tool:-

Another main initiative of this update was the introduction of Google’s Disavow Tool. With the help of this tool, we can remove any link which harms our site and inform google not to consider link juice from that specific link.

5. Google Pirate :- (Revealed on August 2012)

Google Pirate was launched to protect Intellectual Property. It penalized those sites which received copyright Infringement reports. Majority of sites which were affected were that made pirated content (music, movies etc).

If your Intellectual property right is violated, file a DMCA takedown request against the site.

6. Google HummingBird :-(Revealed on 22th August 2013)

Google HummingBird was launched to manage “Long Tail Keywords” based upon user’s intent. It takes into account search results that match searcher intent, rather than individual keywords within the query.

7. Mobile Friendly Update :- (21st April 2015)

Google Mobile Friendly Update or also known as Mobilegeddon ensures that Websites which are mobile optimized are given importance in SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). So, Mobile Friendliness became an essential trait and Subsquently AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) was introduced to enhance speed.

8. Google Possum :- (1st September 2016)

Google Possum introduced various changes related to Local SEO.

(1). Physical Location of the Searcher :- Business near proximity distance of searcher are more likely to appear in SERPs.

(2). Businesses which were located in the outskirts of a particular city, now appeared in the target city results and moreover business with multiple Google My Business Listings having same NAP were De — Ranked.

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