Last week's change in Google's UK search results is still the subject of much debate in the SEO community. On Monday 8th June, many SEO companies and employees reported a huge change in the way Google organised UK search results.
For those of you not aware of the situation, it is widely thought that a modification in Google's algorithms resulted in global companies appearing the UK SERPs. American domains leapfrogged over UK sites, Australian pages snuck into the top ten rankings and unfamiliar domains hijacked a number of results. Typically, the internet responded with the calm and composure one would expect:
- "Product searches and UK SERPs results are beyond a joke now."
- "Look at UK SERPs. “London safes” a .com.au in 1st position - nonsense relevancy."
- "Wish Google would sort out the UK SERPs. It’s an absolute joke at the moment."
Judging by the volume of complaints online, the problem is still ongoing.
Everyone in the industry understands the delicate nature of SEO, particularly on Google. Results can flutter, dip, rise and fall. This is what makes our business so fascinating. The slightest change to Google and its algorithms can send a site crashing out of the top 20. It can also see one rise thirty places.
While many have argued that Google could be more transparent with its business and technical model in order to avoid such occurrences, I would disagree. Google, after all, is still a business and has its own interests to cater for. The company gives away enough information to get your foot in the SEO door: Google University, the webmaster tools and the great Matt Cutts. The foundations for a solid SEO strategy are already widely available. If a key ranking has slipped over the past few days, perhaps it is best to conduct an investigation of your own site rather than demand affirmative action from Google.
However, judging by the calibre of names and companies highlighting this issue, this mix of SERPs results appears to be a technical glitch from Google. Many have predicted that UK SERPs should settle down over the coming weeks and that this anomaly is merely a trial. Still, trials are done for a reason and Google does not have a reputation as a company which operates on a whim.