Over the last seven years I have studied Google algorithms and when changes are made. While most people think of major changes being made when businesses and webmasters can adjust I have found that “tests” and search algorithm updated often roll out over holiday weekends. This is when desktop traffic is not at its highest and Google can see how searchers react. Now that holiday weekends are seeing huge surges in mobile traffic it will be interesting to see if Google rolls out “tests” and algorithm updates on mobile over holiday weekends.
Thanksgiving weekend is one of the most interesting weekends for any website owner. Black Friday, Cyber Monday and millions of people traveling offer tens of thousands of unique searches. Anyone that has owned a retail business knows the power of Black Friday searches. In fact, almost every website that sells a product now offers some type of Black Friday sale. To rank on the front page for Black Friday or Cyber Monday keywords can increase search traffic and overall sales tenfold. Just ask JCPenney what it feels like to get hit with a Google algorithm penalty just before the holiday shopping season starts.
Note that holiday shopping is not all that is going on this time of year. High school and college football is huge in late November and early December. The college basketball and NBA seasons just tipped off. There are travel websites that are getting crushed with traffic because families are making last minute travel plans and they need airline tickets and a hotel. When looking at Google trends, there are many industries that see their search traffic sky rocket this time of year.
With all this in mind, we are left to wonder if Google will have any type of Panda, Penguin or core algorithm update over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. One would imagine that the Googleplex would not be full of employees but there will be plenty around testing out new products and services. I would love to know what you think about the possibility of Google updating with a Panda or Penguin algorithm over the Thanksgiving 2015 holiday weekend. Is this something you have seen in the past? Do you think we will see any type of changes in Google search before the end of 2015?