You would think that we would be used to the fact that Google likes to play around with their organic search rankings by now but every time that fluctuations are as aggressive as they have been recently we begin to wonder just what it is that Google are doing and it seems that the online community has a number of different opinions over the matter, although all seem to lead to one outcome… An update!
Although it seems that we can all see that ranking movements seem to be a regular thing throughout any given day in most areas, the increased activity has led many to believe that the latest happenings are more than simple fluctuations, despite Google telling SERoundtable that they have nothing to report in terms of an update being underway.
Online algorithmic tracking tools seem to indicate that there has been an increased instability of search engine results with major players within that market space such as MozCast, SERPMetrics and Algoroo, all showing that it seems that volatility of the rankings has increased to what would seem to be the normal daily rate.
With speculation that there is something a little bigger than the usual movement in motion at the moment, conversation seems to have turned towards whether this could be a sign of a new roll out of Google Penguin, something that we know is a periodic release that can see as much as 6 months pass before we see the links based algorithm roll out throughout the rankings.
The increased movement within the organics seems to have hit the industry around the same time that websites are reporting that manual actions that were previously displayed within their Webmaster Tools accounts were removed without a reconsideration request being placed into Google, although speaking to a couple of those that made such claims, they had taken previous steps to clean up their link profile and had still to alert Google to that fact.
Although it seems that these actions had been lifted, we strongly suggest that leaving such notifications unactioned is not the best practise that you could take as further insight into these cases seems to indicate that the sites we know of had been in receipt of these notices for over 12 months, meaning that it is likely that they had expired following the cleaning process that they had undertaken more recently.
Google are still to confirm whether the tremors that are raging through the organic rankings at the moment are those of a larger scale release of an update but it seems that evidence suggests that if it has not already completed, there is something big happening that is accounting for the return of previously penalised websites.