Is It Safe To Say “Caffeine 2.0″ Or Will Someone Punch Me?

Posted by on Nov 4, 2011

Over on theĀ Official Google Blog, Amit Singhal has posted a fairly mild-mannered piece thatĀ belies rather a large and potentially unsettling update to Google’s search algorithm.

It’s not called Caffeine 2.0 just yet (in fact, the title of this post is kind of a test for me to see how fast this post gets indexed for a search on Caffeine 2.0) but it bears a lot of the same characteristics:

  • Google will serve fresh results if it determines your query is looking for freshness
  • Google will serve fresh results even if your query doesn’t specify it’s looking for freshness
  • It seems that they’re talking about indexing all content (and not just Tweets, Google+, etc)

This could be interesting if tied into the recent announcement that Google is now indexing Facebook comments and other AJAX.

Interestingly, when the Caffeine index dropped, there was a lot of scrobbling and testing to see what was being affected. Amit says that the new update will impact around 35% of searches (which is considerably higher than the recent “dropped referrer data” which Google said would impact less than 10% of all searches.)

It is, then, no doubt a significant update. As usual with these things, it’s not clear if the change has rolled out to Australian users yet or when we might see it taking effect.

For today, I’ll be doing a lot of rank checking and looking for movement that might be attributable to this. For the medium and long terms, and for the web at large, once again there’s a greater flow toward creating new content regularly, suggesting a larger shift in favour of the content marketing strategies that have been batted about recently.

Update: this post was indexed by Google and returning in a search for “Caffeine 2.0″ about four minutes after posting: