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Google Algorithm Change History

Google algorithm updates and data refreshes

Google Algorithm Updates of 2005

Complete list of Google algorithm updates for 2005.

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# Date Update Update type Noticeable effect
5 Dec, 2005 Bigdaddy Infrastructure None
4 Oct, 2005 Jagger Ranking signals No estimate given
3 Sept, 2005 Gilligan Data refresh No estimate given
2 May, 2005 Bourbon Ranking signals No estimate given
1 Feb, 2005 Allegra Ranking signals No estimate given

Bigdaddy: Dec, 2005

Google Index Infrastructure Change

Bigdaddy was the name given to the new data center and indexing infrastructure that Google began to rollout in December 2005, and which was completely live across all data centers by the end of March 2006.

Similar to Google's more recent Caffeine update, Bigdaddy was primarily an infrastructure change, and did not affect rankings so much as it did prepare the search engine for future improvements.

Bigdaddy was thought by some, albeit mistakenly, to be responsible for the ranking changes which were in reality brought on by Google's preceding algorithm update, Jagger.

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Jagger: October, 2005

Change in Ranking Signals

In September 2005, the first of Jagger's 3 phase update began with a refresh to Google's backlink data. Jagger (named in honour of The Rolling Stones playing in Vegas during the week of PubCon) prepared the way for the upcoming overhaul to Google's infrastructure—Bigdaddy.

Signals looked at by the Jagger update were said to include:

  • Low quality links: Reciprocal links, link farms, and paid links
  • Link velocity: The rate at which a website accumulates backlinks
  • Deceptive CSS techniques to hide text
  • Trust of incoming and outgoing links
  • Relevance of incoming and outgoing links
  • Duplicate content: typical of scraper sites
  • Over-optimization: Excessive keyword repetition, overuse of identical anchor text on internal links, etc

In October 2005, Google spokesman Matt Cutts offered several methods of contacting Google with feedback on Jagger.

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Gilligan: September, 2005

Data Refresh

In what was at first widely believed to be an algorithm update, Gilligan turned out to be nothing more than a refresh to Google PageRank/Backlinks data.

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Bourbon: May, 2005

Changes to Ranking Signals

According to his June 1 2005 statement on Webmaster World, "GoogleGuy" (revealed in 2006 as being Google engineer and spokesman Matt Cutts) divulged that the Bourbon Update included &ellip;something like 3.5 improvements in search quality, and I believe that only a couple are out so far. The 0.5 will go out in a day or so….

On June 4, "GoogleGuy" stated that the "0.5" (not algorithmic changes, but rather responses to various spam/porn complaints + processing reinclusion requests) should go out this weekend sometime or possibly Monday.

Among popular speculation was that Bourbon changed how duplicate content and non-canonical URLs were treated by Google.

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Allegra: February, 2005

Changes to Ranking Signals

Amidst noticeable fluctuations in search results seen the first week of February 2005, Google's Matt Cutts referred to the previous month's introduction of the nofollow attribute, noting that although nofollow was making an improvement to search results, it was not responsible for most of the recent changes.

Popular forum and blog speculation included Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) technology, Google's Sandbox, and suspicious link penalties as signals used with Allegra.

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See More Google Algorithm Updates by Year

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