Google Search Ranking Algorithm Update Around February 14th

Google Algorithm Update

Here we go again; yet another Google search ranking algorithm update seems to have touched down on February 14th, maybe as early as February 13th, and seems to be continuing to shake things up throughout today. We previously covered unconfirmed updates on the 8th/9th and also the 4th.

I am seeing an increase in chatter starting on the 13th of February into today as well as some of the Google automated tracking tools are picking up on volatility and fluctuations.

We are due a broad core update soon, so maybe we are all getting that itch?

SEO Chatter

Here is some of the chatter here in the comments and also on WebmasterWorld:

Is it me or has traffic died the last couple of days? Really died!

Today, my traffic showed a steep drop, the worst value I have seen in 2023. How about yours?

No traffic on 14th feb. organic traffic is less than 20% as compared to previous year comparison.

Something is definitely going on, for the first time in years in the last 24 hours I have not received ONE piece of email spam, not one, zero spam … Considering the usual volume of garbage I get this is very significant.

The past week and a bit – nearly 2 weeks we had higher traffic and loads of conversions. We took around 3 weeks worth of orders in this space of time. Then last Tuesday / Wednesday google closed down that traffic and we have not had a single order since.

I’m in a different market, lead generation, but the timeline sounds remarkably similar. For 2-3 weeks we saw higher volume, steady, quality traffic to our services. Around the 4th of Feb it all seemed to have steadied out, but now the quality traffic arrives in short bursts. Meaning, we may be slow for the first 6 hours of our business day, then at some point in the afternoon we’ll see a flurry of lead activity for 1-2 hours, before it all turns back off again. It’s not related to a single service, a single area, or a specific thing. At one point, I thought it was ad-related, but I’m no longer sure since the hour or three of activity might come at 9am today, or 2pm tomorrow.

Definitely not normal traffic trends.

Well, I haven’t see this in quite some time, so far today one visitor 2hrs and 4 mins with 254 page views and still on the site !

Interesting that so many of us have noticed a huge drop in sales recently. My visibility is at a high point going back as far as I can see, but today my search traffic is -25%. USA / Canada are -43% and -40% this morning at 11am. Traffic to my landing pages is down dramatically…almost all of them simultaneously.

My SERPs are all over the place today. If I get the layout with the favicons I am always 1st, if I get the layout without favicons then the top 4 seem to just be shuffling about, I can go from 1st to 3rd to 4th & back to 1st again just by opening new incognito tabs..

Daily, my two websites are shuffling their position front and back, no stability.

Whatever is going on, traffic is very low today…USA is -30% at 4:30pm and most of my major landing pages are way down. Canada is -66%, Australia is at zero today. This is while my visibility is higher than at any time in the last two years according to SEM. I checked and for the first time I am coming in 1st place in searches that I have been at 2 or 3 for years now…but the traffic just isn’t there.

Huge drop the last 3 days, but metrics on website backend are consistent.
More emails from possible customers, maybe the end of my zombie traffic increase I’m having since 2 months..

Glenn Gabe posted another site that is on this rollercoaster:

So as you can see, there is a lot of chatter in the past couple of days.

Google Tracking Tools

Some of the tools have picked up on the volatility today and yesterday, some have not picked up on it yet. Here is what I see from the popular tracking tools right now.


click for full size

Cognitive SEO:

click for full size


click for full size


click for full size


click for full size

Advanced Web Rankings:

click for full size


click for full size


click for full size

What are you all noticing?

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.