The latest Google update nicknamed “Jagger” is in full swing and webmasters are reeling from up and down rankings for the past few days.
The changes actually started with a string of back-link updates that began in early September and continued into the first week of October. Two weeks later, the information Google has in regards to links directed towards a specific website is likely different than the information it had two months ago. That is likely the cause of immediate changes to the SERPS.
As with most updates, some SEO bigs are giving a “do not panic” advisory, suggesting that while rankings are in flux, they will eventually stabilize.
Like temporary hearing loss, effects suffered by a visit of the Jagger Update will likely dissipate over time. What you are experiencing right now is the flash of the live-time update show in which everything is bigger (like the big-boxes who dominate the rankings right now), and badder (like the spam that rises to the surface before sinking).
Google updates happen in phases and tend to take a few weeks to fully work themselves out. If your website has suddenly lost rankings for no reason whatsoever, there is likely a simple explanation. It tends to happen during updates. More often than not, the site moves itself back up again as it and its document histories are reweighed against sites with similarly themed content.
Some of the noticeable features of Update Jagger is an update on backlinks and PageRank. Some things I observed on my site include PageRank changes (PR3 and PR2) for pages published on or before October 10. PTB also got a PR boost (homepage is now a PR5, inside pages published on or before October 10 are PR4 and PR3).
How did your sites fare?