Google Freshness Algorithm Update – A Round up from the Web

Google made another major change to their algorithm last week that was set to effect 35% of web searches. This is an expansion of the QDF algorithm first discussed by Google in 2007. It will predominately affect 3 kinds of searches:

Recent Events or Hot Topics: For example, this Google update is a hot topic and you can see the first page of Google is showing the most recent posts around this topic. The oldest post on the first page was from 3 days ago.

Google Freshness Algorithm- SERP
Events: Recurring events like the presidential election or current tv programs like the X Factor:


Note:  Google still love to show their Wiki entry no matter what and for this search, the first page of Google was a mixture of current results and some for the actual X-Factor website. 

Frequent Updates: This to me is one of the most interesting parts of the updates. It’s for searches that are not a hot topic, but change on a regular basis, so reviews. Affiliates listen up, building review type posts and getting them to rank for products, may not be as effective anymore. For example, here is a result for “call of duty review”


Note: An important point to note, is this update is for 35% of searches not keywords, so the update may not be felt as much as Panda. For example, a search for “lady gaga” could make up 5% of that total figure.

Google Freshness Posts from the Web

1. SEOMoz Whiteboard Friday – Rand Fishkin @randfish and Mike @ipullrank talk a little about the update and what it could mean for SEO (they give a few takeaways). Nothing jaw dropping, but 5 minutes well spent.

2. Methods for Evaluating Freshness – Justin Briggs @justinbriggs does a good job and showing how Google may evaluate freshness. This is based on Justin consuming a lot of data found in patents and feeding it back to the rest of us in English. Great post if you are trying to figure out how this update may affect you and how you could leverage it. Of course, nothing that Justin says can be verified.

3. Great thread on this update over at Webmaster Worlds

4.Google’s New Freshness Update: Social Media Has Changed the Expectations of Searches by Bill Slawski over on SEOBytheSEO. This is a great round up of the subject by Barry including links to some other great posts on the subject.

The above is enough to give you a good overview of this change. Barry’s post is the best round up on the subject and worth reading.

Have you felt any affects of this update yet ? Would love to hear from you in the comments if you had.

About Kieran Flanagan

Online Marketer who implements both inbound and paid strategies to help companies grow internationally. Lover of content marketing, SEO, analytics, CRO and strategy. A highly motivated marketing geek high on data crack.