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GSC July 13-14 decrease in average positions is a reporting change... not a rankings drop

     
9:14 am on Jul 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Possibly good news for many members here who have been discussing a noticeable drop in average ranking positions since July 13 or 14....

If this was Google Search Console data, the reported drop in average positions doesn't necessarily mean that your rankings have fallen. It could be indicating instead that Search Analytics has improved how it logs data. Report of the GSC change is here....

Data anomalies in Search Console
https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6211453#search_analytics
> Search Analytics Report
>>July 14 - onward
An incremental improvement in Google's logging system now provides better accounting for results in lower positions. This change might cause increase in impressions, but also a decrease in average positions. This change only affects Search Console reporting, not your actual performance on Google Search.

The above change was announced by Gary Illyes in Twitter [twitter.com...] and reported Wednesday morning by Barry Schwartz in Search Engine Land [searchengineland.com...] Thanks to Barry for staying on top of the story.

For some, though, according to discussion in our "July 2017 Google Updates and SERP Changes" thread [webmasterworld.com...] ...there may have been actual ranking changes as well. In light of the Google announcement, it's hard to know from various comments in our thread which were ranking changes and which were reporting changes. "Average positions" can be a very fuzzy term.

4:41 pm on July 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My views from Google increased on console since that day. I hope it is legit? :/
10:02 pm on July 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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We had a modest decline in average positions starting around July 12-13, with bigger drops on the 14th and 15th, followed by a leveling off and then a slight improvement.

Our impressions increased over the same period, so the "increase in impressions, but also a decrease in average positions" reporting scenario makes sense.

I can't help wishing they'd just left well enough alone, though, for the sake of consistency over time.
5:42 am on July 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My average position dropped, as well as my impressions and clicks from Google.

Although, that is also happening simultaneously with a barrage of 404 errors I'm getting, thanks to a plugin update.
This plugin update has damaged my site URL structure and decimated my traffic, because of all the 404s. Still trying to tackle this.
8:06 am on July 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My traffic dropped on 15 and 16 july. but after that its gone double now almost.
6:28 am on July 26, 2017 (gmt 0)

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After 10 days, we cannot see the accurate data. It is still showing drop in average position. So how much time it will be taken to be fixed.
6:50 am on July 26, 2017 (gmt 0)

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After 10 days, we cannot see the accurate data
GSC changed their methodology to, basically, count more SERP pages. So if you appear after page 1, your impression is more likely to be counted.

Result: More impressions recorded, but as each is below page 1, those extra impressions lower your average position.

It's just more accurate, is all.
10:08 am on July 26, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Well, it sounds like great news to me! It will be more fair and more precise.