Google Algorithm Updates and Changes 1998-2015 [Infographic]

Google is most popular search engine at the time of writing, and many online businesses depend on Google Algorithm. Google algorithm is the set of rules and expressions that determine how a webpage will rank in Google. In simple word, when you search for any query “SEO changes”, this also will decide the placement of search results. For any online business and Bloggers, it’s important to keep an eye on Google algorithm updates and changes.

Google is one of the search engines that change their algorithm so much that sometimes it is hard for people to keep up with the updates and stay current. The most obvious reason for these frequent changes is the fight against spammers and black hat SEO techniques.

Most of the changes are minor but each year there are about 500-600 hundred of them. There are also bigger algorithmic updates that Google launches every few months. The infographic shows in a very interesting way how much the algorithm has changed since Google was first launched.

Some of these big updates include the “caffeine update”, the “Panda Farmer”, the query encryption and much more. So far, SEO gurus have been able to keep their heads above the water, although Google makes sure this task gets harder every time. In the infographic, you will find out what all of these minor and major Google updates did and how they affected the SEO world.

Google Algorithm Changes & Updates – History


Click on image to see large view.

People who are seeing significant traffic drop in last one year, they should keep an eye on following Google Panda updates date:

Google Panda Update timeline:

  • Panda 1: Feb 23rd, 2011
  • Panda 2.0: April 11, 2011
  • Panda 2.1: May 9, 2011
  • Panda 2.2: June 21, 2011
  • Panda 2.3: July 23, 2011
  • Panda 2.4: August 12, 2011
  • Panda 2.5: September 28, 2011
  • Panda 3.0: October 13, 2011
  • Panda 3.1: November 18, 2011
  • Panda minor update: Dec 19, 2011
  • Page layout algo: January 19, 2012
  • Panda 3.3: February 27th, 2012
  • Panda 3.4: March 24th, 2012
  • Panda data refresh: April 19th, 2012
  • Google Penguin update: 24th April 2012
  • Panda 3.6: April 27th, 2012
  • Penguin 1.1: May 27th, 2012
  • Google Panda 3.7: June 11th, 2012
  • Panda 3.8: June 26th, 2012
  • Panda 3.9: Affected Korean and Japanese language.
  • Panda 4.0: July 25th-26th 2012
  • Google Panda 20th Update: 27th September 2012
  • Google Exact Match Domain penalty: 28th September 2012
  • Google Penguin update: 6th October 2012
  • Google Page layout algorithm update: 10th October 2012
  • Panda 21: November 5th, 2012
  • Panda 22: November 22nd, 2012
  • Panda 23: December 21-22, 2012
  • In-depth articles: August 2013
  • Mobile Friendliness: April 2015

Now, Google algorithm update is happening every month, where Google all changes they have made in recent algo update. Google panda update happened on above mentioned dates which is one of the most prominent Google algorithm change that happened in last few years. On Feb 23, 2011, when Google panda launched, it affected 12% of search engine results and kicked many of the player out of online  business, although it helped many at the same time.

Google freshness update was another major change last year, which helped to bring recent & updates pages at the top. Anyhow, if your website is affected by Panda updates, you should check out this guide: How to recover from Google panda.

Now, one thing that is clear in 2015 and coming year, social signals and your network is going to be one big factor for ranking. My suggestion would be, stay active on Google+ and create Google+ page for your Website and Business. Google authorship is another thing, which I highly recommend you to implement, as author trust factor is going to be another game changer in coming days.

Instead of making changes n your site, after every Google panda update & Google algorithm update, my suggestion would create a quality and helpful site. Take care of all the factors which include on-Site SEO, Keyword research, On-Page SEO, Link building, Social media promotion, website usability, website design and so on.

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Article By
Lyuben Georgiev works for one of the leading search marketing agencies - Outrider.


COMMENTs ( 8 )

  1. Marco says

    I come to this panda article, because now i have a big traffic loss. Its a result of penguin, but earlier Panda had negative effect too on one of my sites. Now i try to fix those mistakes i had made and those articles here about panda and penguin helps me very good to understand. Thanks for those worthful informations.

  2. Techbymak says

    add the Panda EMD Update on 29th september 2012. which has kicked One of my website and I’m losing 98% of the Traffic per day.

  3. Flexus says

    Panda is my Favorite these days. Its is a good start from Google side to remove online spam. I know that days when there is only spam and on;y spam in Search results, Now i get some good one.

  4. Arlene Aranzamendez says

    It is a big challenge for online marketers but I love Google doing these updates every year to avoid spammers on the internet because it is very unfair for other who are doing the right or proper way in optimizing their websites..

  5. Sreejesh says

    I didn’t know that there was so many Panda updates consequently. I think you missed a recent update in March 2012, I’m not sure when but there was a discussion by bloggers about the recent update.