Why does a new page’s ranking change over time?
Articles,  Blog

Why does a new page’s ranking change over time?

Today’s question comes from
Sandeep in India. Sandeep asks, when we create a
new landing page with quality content, Google ranks that
page on the top 30 to 50 results for targeted keywords. Then why does the rank get
decreased for the next two or three weeks? If the pages didn’t have the
required quality, then why did it get ranked in
the first week? That’s a fun question because
it opens up how writing a search engine is kind
of a complex task. You’re basically trying to make
sure that you return the best quality result, but you
also have to do that with limited information. For example, in the first minute
after an earthquake, you might have different people saying different things. 10 minutes after an earthquake,
you have more information. An hour after an earthquake,
you have a lot more. With any event that has breaking
news, it’s the sort of thing where it can be hard
to know– even if multiple people are all saying the same
thing, and one person might be the original author, one might
be using that RSS. It can be difficult to try
to suss out who is– where was this content
appearing originally? And over time, over the course
of hours or days or weeks, that gets easier. But it can be harder
over the course of just minutes or hours. So a lot of the times, whenever
you see something ranking for a while, we’re
taking our best guess. And then as more information
becomes available, we incorporate that. And then eventually, typically,
things settle down into a steady state. And then when there’s a steady
state, we’re typically able to better guess about how relevant
something is. So it is definitely the case
that there are some queries that deserve freshness– QDF. There are some queries that are
better served by evergreen content that’s been around
for a long time. And when there’s a new blog
post or when there’s a breaking event or when somebody
has just published something on that topic, it can
be difficult to assess how relevant something is. So a lot of people think, oh,
there should be one– instead of rankings, it should
be completely uniform. Everybody in the world should
see the exact same thing. And the fact is we have
different results for people in different countries, even
in different cities. And the results can
change over time. Not just because links change or
because the content on the page changes, but we basically
are able to better assess which pages are more relevant. So it’s not just the case that
you write a static algorithm. Your algorithm also has to deal
with limited information and then how does it deal when
it has better information and better information. So it is expected that,
over time, the rankings will fluctuate. They will change as we’re trying
to get a better idea based on the information we
have about what the most relevant results are.


  • James Riter

    So you are doing a post about a phone the "HTC One"

    Bad Content: The HTC One is a super powerful phone that has the power to plag all the games I want and takes killer pictures! I love it!

    Good Content: The HTC One is powered by a very powerful 1.7GHz quad-core processor that along with being able to play the most advanced games is also designend to save battery power.

    My best guess is good content gives information and answers questions for people, where bad content is just talking to talk.

  • Andris Zarins

    What he is saying, that this is part of the G's algo. Show to know how good/bad it really is. Hence the bonus ranks in first few weeks.

  • rorosamy

    thanks it make sense i guess, but its still bugs me. how can google program that into the engine.
    i as a hobbiest programmer(and no a good one lol), cant think of a way this can be done without using some sort of AI, that learn this over some time, by viewing and reviewing pages base on other parmeters like bounce rate and stiff of the sort.

  • James Riter

    I look at it like MS Word and how they can do grammer checking, but then add in checking for filler words. Then I bet they look at author , back-links, domain, and keywords. Along with checking how unique the content is.

  • Spook SEO

    When you first publish a new page it is not expected to have any backlinks pointing to it. Even if it's the best content in the world, it will not have backlinks to begin with. But then if it doesn't start to accumulate backlinks and social signals (eg. Twitter posts, G+ shares, etc) over the next few weeks, Google will start to suspect that actually perhaps it isn't so good after all. Time separates the wheat from the chaff. It's important to get the links coming in within the first week.

  • MAU

    Hi Sandeep. I would ensure the quality pages you create not just get published with optimal content but also you have a plan to continue generating earned traffic to that page over time. Options are inviting guest contributors, adding an extra image/video galleries, adding children pages with more specific content that link back to the main article(s). plus a steady promotion on free and paid social and media channels.

  • Ram Kr Shukla

    Still the algorithm is not smart enough to identify the original source of content; you will automatically win if you have higher domain authority

  • Alok Raghuwanshi

    I am sure that Google is taking the author into account along with the content, back-links, and keywords..

  • ryan tamblin

    Ovidiu, good question, and I Hope Matt answers it . very relevant to probably everyone watching these videos

  • Ved Tiwari

    Good Answer Matt…

    Google algorithm is very simple which can be defined in three simple steps for priority of your website..

    1. Fresh Content Found by Google (Automatically gain top slots as soon as Google founds)
    2. Is that really Unique Content (Your position will remain same if Unique otherwise drop in raking)
    3. Popularity of your Content via back Links, Social Shares etc(No Popularity? May be not good content and drop in ranking)
    Have all 3 than you will have same positions from day one

  • PowerFortunes.com

    Poor Google.

    Multi-billion Dollar search engines, with their enormous resources have such a tough life. It's the webmasters who have all the fun, all they have to do is have totally original, world beating content and compete with millions of other results for a top 10 ranking on a fickle search engine.

    Life is so simple when you only look at things from your own perspective. Right Matt?

  • Rohit Sharma

    I have Written my knowledge & whatever information i have on it is my own original , they are my views & how much i know about the topic.. I applied for adsense approval & they say the content is copyright & not original!! I am like,,, ???!!! Now What???

  • Video Blog Sensation !

    In my experience what matters is your Bounce Rate – if your content doesn't match people's expectations people will hit the back button. If you can draw people in with your story – people go deeper into it and want to learn more about you. When someone spends 6-10 minutes on your blog it tells Google that you've captivated the interest of someone. That's the power of bounce rate. Hit me up on G+ if you'd like to hang out and chat about SEO.

  • Jason Bourne

    Google doesn't want you to rank and they purposely shuffle the rankings to screw you up. They want you frustrated so you buy PPC. Google has everyone "running like a rat on the treadmill", you can never get ahead. Once you start ranking the next algorithm change will destroy all of your hard work, only to start over. Because of Google many companies have failed after Investing a lot of money into their online business. Business can't plan, operate or turn a profit with a system like this.

  • Water slide rentals Bounce house rentals

    Thanks Matt. That helps a lot! We try very hard to Rank Page 1 on Google and you blogs and videos are very informative./

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *