Announcing the Google Algorithm Changes Tool

Last month, with Penguin 3.0 rolling out, we’ve witnessed a new frenzy among SEOs. As usual, the effects of the update were seen by webmasters days before Google confirmed the event. No one knew what was happening or why were rankings going up and down like crazy, until the confirmation arrived and cleared things up.

This scenario happens again and again with each new algorithm update, putting many in our industry through hell.

What exactly happened? Was it just you, or did it affect someone else too? Was it major? Is this something you should be worried about?

According to Google, this happens quite often. They are making over 500 changes to their algorithms a year, so there will always be fluctuations in rankings in addition to normal crawling and indexing.

That is why, we thought it would be useful to have a tool that would help with these types of uncertainties. It’s called the Google Algorithm Changes tool and is free to use for anyone in need, on our website. Let’s check it out!

Presenting the Google Algorithm Changes tool

The Google Algorithm Changes tool is not the first of its kind. You may have seen something similar with Moz’s very creative MozCast tool or Dejan SEO’s Algoroo. Both these tools help you track the changes in Google’s algorithm. If you haven’t checked them out before, now would be a perfect time to do so.

The new Google Algorithm Changes tool that we built tries to broaden the image of the these kindred tools by using a different set of data and (we hope) a better detection algorithm.

In a nutshell, the Google Algorithm Changes tool shows fluctuations in Google search results and it matches these with recent algorithm updates, showing their impact on the organic visibility of the websites included in the data set.

But, there are a number of things the Google Algorithm Changes tool brings new to the table, which are precisely what I’ll be focusing on throughout this post.

Let’s dig in.

First things first

Being powered by AWR Cloud, the Google Algorithm Changes tool is processing the rankings of approximately 10,000 keywords and 500,000 URLs, across various industries, to determine the ranking changes.

We have been collecting data for over four months now, piling up plenty historical data for you to use and compare to. We plan on making all historical data available for as long as the tool shall live, so no worries about losing that information.

This is how the tool looks like:

Google Algorithm Changes tool
Let’s talk features!

Algorithm Changes correlated with Organic Visibility

As you may have noticed on the screenshot above, there are two items you can display on the chart: the Ranking changes factor and Visibility percent.

The Ranking changes factor is displayed daily as bars, the color changing in relation to the number and severity of changes, from green (fewer changes) to yellow (moderate changes) and red (major changes).

The ranking changes factor is determined by the number of websites that have had their rankings changed – the more websites are affected, the higher the importance of the algorithm update. This is usually the same information you get from tools similar to this one.

Side by side with the ranking changes, the Google Algorithm Changes tool also displays the Visibility percent.

This is calculated for all the websites that we track in AWR Cloud. If the organic visibility increases, it means that on average the websites we track are experiencing higher rankings in Google search results.

This metric should give you a sense of how the rest of the web is being affected by the update in terms of organic visibility.

Sample #1 – Although the “HTTPS/SSL as Ranking Signal” Google update has determined tremendous changes in search results, these changes appear to be positive for most of the websites we tracked.

Their organic visibility spiked considerably after the update, and also a bit more with the update immediately after.

Google algorithm updates trigger organic visibility spikes

Your website & Google Algorithm Changes – side by side

As an AWR Cloud user, you can even see how your own visibility and website traffic are fluctuating in relation with the Google algorithm changes. Cool, right? For that, you just need to log in and access the Google Algorithm Changes tool inside AWR Cloud. If you don’t have an account yet, but wish to give it a try with your own data, you can simply sign up for a 30 day free trial of AWR Cloud and check it out.

Google algorithm changes integrated into AWR Cloud

Country-specific ranking changes: US, UK & DE

For the Google Algorithm Changes tool we have also gathered and processed specific country information for the US, US – local, UK and Germany, showing how algorithm updates have impacted search results in different country-specific Google search engines.

Sample #2 –  Speaking earlier about the tremendous changes determined by the “HTTPS/SSL as Ranking Signal” Google update, it seems that algorithm changes first affect the US and Germany, but they affect other countries such as UK differently or a lot later.

Country-specific Google algorithm changes
For people outside the U.S. it proves to be extremely important to have available country-specific information, as what happens on one search engine might not confirm on all the others as well.

Changes in Top 10, 20 and 50 search results

We also wanted to take a closer look at how Google algorithm changes are influencing rankings on the first page of results, in Top 20 and 50 results.

The reason being that rankings in Top 10 search results are usually less volatile than rankings for, let’s say, the 3rd or 4th page of results. The farther a listing is from the first page of results, the greater the chances are that its rankings would be fluctuating more.

Sample #3 – While both Panda 4.1 and Penguin 3.0 determined no abnormal fluctuations in Top 10 listings (screenshot-1), in Top 50 results there was quite enough turbulence to signal an update (screenshot-2).

Regular ranking fluctuations in Top 10
Ranking fluctuations in Top 50

But there’s more to play with! Aside from being able to select the SERP you want to see the changes for, you can drill even more into the data to see how many websites have had their rankings changed with more than 3, 5 or 10 positions daily!

Plus, some more is coming next

The functionality we initially had in mind for this tool has been achieved, but there are still a lot of questions left unanswered. We’re planning to bring in more data and hopefully be able to shed some more light into this matter.

So check out the tool, and let us know below how we may improve it to better address your needs.


Author: Dana Loiz

Dana Loiz is an Online Marketing Strategist at Caphyon. She is passionate about her job and always in a mood to chat about SEO, Internet Marketing and Social Media. She tweets the news at @awebranking and @dana_loiz.

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Free Google Algorithm Changes Tool

Find out in real time how Google’s algo updates affect rankings and visibility. No login required!

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25 thoughts on “Announcing the Google Algorithm Changes Tool”

    1. I cannot say at this moment anything specific about what we’ll be adding next, but I will make sure to keep everyone update on this as soon as I have the info! Very glad you like it, David!

    1. Yup, you can access the tool from any project in your AWR Cloud account. You will find it in AWR Cloud under the “Research” menu listed as “Google Algorithm Changes”. Check it out and shoot us an email if you encounter any difficulties with it 😉

  1. I love it. The presentation is very beautiful and creative. This tool in combo with the others is an awesome way to check for updates really quickly and with surety. Thank you so much AWR.

  2. I don’t get the graph, only the screen that shows the date & globe. I inserted the widget in a simple .html file in my local directory. What am I missing?

  3. This is great Dana! Really interesting to see the impacts on visibility on a graph. Super keen to see the results for Australia – and how far behind the States it is!

    1. We’re excited as well, Catherine! 😀 We’ll make a list with all your suggestions and see how we can make things happen. Thanks!

    1. Gosh, of course it’s Penguin!!! The zoo got mixed up in my head, ha ha Thanks for pointing it out, Craig! Very glad you like the tool 🙂

    1. Can’t promise anything yet, Dennis. We need to analyze things in order to see which countries can be implemented next. I’ll keep you updated on that. We’re happy you find the tool useful! And hopefully, we will be able to make it even more useful for you 🙂

  4. This is a great way of presenting clearly how a site is affected by general trends – one thing that would be really useful (as an AWRCloud user) is the ability to show both overall visibility trends and those for a specific website on the same graph – as it is we can only view the visibility and traffic for the specific site in AWRCloud, if we want to compare that with overall trends we have to go to the public version of the GAC and put the two graphs alongside each other.

        1. You’re welcome, Alexander. Yes, we want to bring in more country-specific data, but don’t know at this moment which countries we’ll be adding next. Netherlands has already received another few votes, so, let’s hope for the best! 🙂

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