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Wondering why Google is slower in showing your website at the top of search engine rankings, even if immediate gains are warranted.  A while back, Google received patent approval on a mechanism called “Ranking Documents.”  It is believed that since this patent, Google has now integrated tricks into their algorithm.

search engine algorithm

The algorithm is intended to mess with blackhat spammers, but the fallout affects everyone that makes big improvements.  What this feature does is delay a shift in increasing or decreasing a website’s rankings if Google detects large-scale changes to the site.  This is intended to make it harder for aggressive SEO companies from knowing what changes they made to a website did or did not work.  The algorithm may throw off webmasters in a few ways after it detects large website updates.

  • do a lot to see if it gets you excited and causes you to do more (over optimization)
  • do nothing for a few weeks to see if you freak out and do more
  • do the opposite of what you expected and decrease rankings to see if you undo a bunch of stuff (to see your habits)

Search Engine Land has a more detailed explanation of effects.  When making massive website optimization updates, don’t freak out if you see unexpected or no results.  Nowadays, it’s not uncommon to not see any recognizable changes in Google for 4 – 6 weeks while they do the above and let the results settle.  The best follow up tactic after major search engine optimization updates is to let everything settle and not be overly aggressive.