tedster - 9:21 pm on Jul 21, 2012 (gmt 0)
There's probably no better example of how Google has changed and evolved. We started with once a month updates - you got your new position and there it was for 30 days. Then we went to fluid updates, all the time. But still it seemed that you had a position that sort of stuck and you could watch changes happen and know that either yuour competition changed something, or you changes something, or the algo changed.
But now, everything is so fluid that it's very hard to judge why any change happens at all. It sure isn't always links, or titles, or copy, or your competitors. The algorithm itself seems to act differently for different markets and even sometimes for different query terms in the same market.
No matter how Google is or isn't taking user data into account, it seems to me that a lot of a site owner's energy should be freed up to "chase their user rather than the algorithm." That actually feels better to me most of the time - except of course when I don't rank well ;)