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Do SERPS reflect cache?
If it's in the cache, is it figured into the SERPs?

 7:51 am on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

In the days of monthly updates, I think I understood this. Now I'm not so sure.

Can anyone confirm, refute:

When changes made to a page are reflected in the cached version on Google, they are factored into the SERPS.

Or, does it happen at some irratic, undetermined time when one of these mini updates strikes?

It's kind of important to know...



 4:52 pm on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Anybody? Help!


 5:55 pm on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Good question!

I am a great believer that Google is in the business of creating 'fog' in order that testing stuff is very difficult. I think new links have a delay, so although they may show, they take time to have an effect. Likewise, new content may show in the cache, but not really rank well after an initial 'fresh content' boost (dependant on other factors).

If you have new content showing in the cache, then a search for a block of it within quotes will show up in the results.... so yes it is figured into the serps. But, I find new content can rank better with age, when other factors have also been updated.

In short, any new tactics need at least a month before they really show any perminent effect. There are so many factors in play that constantly changing stuff is pointless, because you just don't know whats effective or not. My attitude is if it is not spammy and looks OK for the user then shove it in and leave it.... something good may happen, You can never be sure what has helped or hindered your rankings, but constant changes prove nothing eitherway. Any seo tactics should be left for a few months to see what happens.

The real irony is that sometimes a change looks like it has worked, when in fact all that has happened is that the page has been refreshed and thus google has given the new content a boost... a few weeks later the page is back where it was.


 6:17 pm on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi MHes

Thanks for your response

So, am I right in thinking that even well relatively ranked - ie page 1 or 2 on competitive terms - pages will get a fresh content boost if you make significant enough changes?

And, that they too will not show the effect of changes for a month or two?




 10:50 pm on Nov 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi Suggy

I'm guessing here, (with perhaps a little experience thrown in).

Some sites seem to be identyfied as 'news' sites and get their new content ranked quickly. They seem to attract the spider everyday. The new content ranks well for 2 or 3 days then starts to drop. Other sites get a similar treatment once the spider has visited them, but this is not so regularly.

Then there's the question of seo effects, like experimenting with putting a word in bold. It can get spidered and appear in the cache and hey presto... the ranking improves. But the big question is... was it the bold that did it? It could have been:
1) The page became 'changed' so it got a boost.
2) A coincidental algo change
3) A competitor dropped out
4) A new link from months ago kicked in
5) The bold actually worked

The cache version may be representing the information they now have, but they may not have yet processed all the filters. The bold tag may have been logged, but that will have an effect later rather than sooner.

Fresh content has got to be good news, it is a sign of a site being worked on and thus probably usefull. The new words will be indexed when they appear in the cache, but other changes like bold, pr flow, anchor text emphasis, word frequency are all (in my opinion) not effective for sometime. Only the words give an initial boost, the longterm effect can take several weeks to kick in. This may be all part of 'sandbox'. I don't think sandbox just effects new sites, it is all about google being more thorough about its page annalysis, especially when dealing with new sites. Instant results from changes are now less obvious because of this time lag. The assumption that sandbox only applies to new sites is in my opinion a false one. Google has slowed the process of on page changes having an effect. This creates confusion to those trying to seo. Their one concession is that new words on an established page will have a boost for a few days once the spider has gone through.

Having said all that, hilltop and relevant links in is the real key to good rankings. You can make on page changes until you are blue in the face and never know what has been good or bad. If you have a simple page the spider can read, that is all that is really required.... the rest is the quality of the links you have coming in. New sites come out of sandbox relatively quickly, but they only rank well when quality links in are processed and counted. I suspect many webmasters think they are still in sandbox when in fact they just have not achieved the quality of links in that hilltop requires.


 5:04 am on Nov 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

When changes made to a page are reflected in the cached version on Google, they are factored into the SERPS.

Or, does it happen at some irratic, undetermined time when one of these mini updates strikes?

Absolutly right Suggy. If your page is in SERPS and lets say you've made some changes in the page(like change in the description) which will only be displayed after google has changed your cache. Bot may have visited your webpage many time but until unless the cache is not change the new SERP results expected by you won't follow.


 6:34 am on Nov 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

When changes made to a page are reflected in the cached version on Google, they are factored into the SERPS.

Typically yes, for on-page factors. Off-page factors can be updated asynchronously, though.


 9:35 am on Nov 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

Wow - thanks Google Guy and for a definitive answer.

I feel somewhat honoured!

Would that be true also for new links OFF a page? Or are they only figured in at the next big update? Not interested in the affect on PR.




 2:37 pm on Nov 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

Links off a page could be counted slightly toward on-page factors for the source page, but would mostly be off-page factors (for the destination page).


 3:02 pm on Nov 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

how about this GG:
if the page that links you has been been indexed /cached, how long before you see the benefits of the link?


 7:50 pm on Nov 7, 2004 (gmt 0)


[quote]Typically yes, for on-page factors. Off-page factors can be updated asynchronously, though.[quote]

Asynchronously as in LAGGED? I'm just kidding, I guess you won't be tricked into making a statement about the infamous silicondioxide-box.


 1:41 am on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

And G is getting faster, changed title of home page from widget country to widget city and within 24hrs, site jumped to position1 on one dc for widget city


 11:06 am on Nov 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

Changes in the cache has, in my experience, always reflected in SERPS. The impact is clear in less competitive phrases, and barely noticeable competitive cases.

However, there are many other factors which may or may not have an immediate effect too. So in practical, real world optimziation for serious stuff, its not of much use.

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