It appears that Google’s new infrastructure, code named Google Caffeine, is rolling-out live to data centers.
Why is this important?
- Expect to see ranking changes.
- Don’t freak-out. We’re not talking 2012 or Alderaan upheaval here.
That said, expect disturbances in the force. While most well and legitimately optimized websites should remain unscathed, it’s likely that others could experience some organic ranking unpleasantness.
What is Caffeine?
Caffeine is an infrastructure change. Think of it like upgrading from XP to Vista or from Vista to Windows 7 or from Snow Leopard to Windows 7. Google seems to make infrastructure changes every three years or so.
How Does Google Roll-out Caffeine?
Right now it appears Google is still testing. There seems to be two sets of live data centers using Caffeine. On one set Google will turn-on Caffeine, let it run for several hours then turn it off. On another set it appears to be all Caffeine all the time. Google is probably doing final quality checks before rolling it out to all their data centers.
The last infrastructure change, Big Daddy, took a few months to complete, partially because Big Daddy required hardware changes to Google’s thousands of servers around the world. We expect Caffeine to roll-out much faster and more seamlessly. Once they decide to pull the trigger, like, “Bam!”
Are My Google Rankings in Danger After Caffeine?
After Caffeine, expect Google to make changes to the algorithm that they’ve been dying to make but were incapable of while still using their old software. Infrastructure changes improve how the Google algorithm gets implemented. It also makes it easier or possible to install new changes and upgrades to the algorithm.
As an example, imagine building a giant slingshot. Then, say you want to shoot a Toyota Prius across a river, except your rubber band is too small. After Google’s Caffeine infrastructure change you have a
super-powerful rubber band capable of launching cars over the river. In fact, in anticipation of future improvements, your new rubber band might be able to shoot a car over the river and past the railroad tracks too.
What Does Google Caffeine Mean for SEO?
Good SEO is still good SEO. Google is not changing the types of quality signals they seek. They’re just getting better at looking for them.
At Portent Interactive, should we observe specific behavior changes we may recommend certain on-site changes, but good SEO is not about back-engineering the algorithm. It’s about creating high-quality link-worthy content that people will appreciate and trust. Caffeine or no Google Caffeine infrastructure update, that is how you earn high organic search engine ranking results.