8 things to know about the Google SEO algorithm document leak

The Google algorithm leak is making waves. Here's a quick rundown of what you need to know.
Han Jang's avatar
Jun 04, 2024
8 things to know about the Google SEO algorithm document leak

Recent leaks of internal Google search algorithm documents are causing a stir in the search engine optimization (SEO) community and the industry at large. The documents contain a wealth of information about Google's search ranking factors, many of which contradict Google's past statements.

But the bottom line is the same one we've known all along: at the end of the day, it's all about writing quality content, regardless of the algorithm.

Google SEO algorithm leak overview

  1. How the document was leaked:

google algorithm leak
  1. documentation content:

  • The documentation contains 2,596 modules and 14,014 attributes, which describe various elements of Google's search algorithm.

  • It includes claims that click data, user engagement metrics, Chrome browser data, and more affect search rankings. This contradicts what Google has publicly denied in the past. (Source)

  • Mentions domain authority scores like “siteAuthority,” click-based systems like “NavBoost,” and the “hostAge” attribute for sandboxing new sites. (Source)

  1. Google's response:

  • Google initially avoided commenting on the authenticity of the document, but later confirmed that it was indeed an internal Google document, but warned that the information in the document could be taken out of context or outdated. (Source)

  1. Reaction from the SEO community:

  • SEO experts say that while the document is interesting, it's important to be cautious about making drastic changes to your SEO strategy based on it.

  • Some experts claim that the documentation does not reflect Google's actual algorithm and is merely internal API documentation. (Source)

Google algorithm leak summary

Here's what we learned from the leaked Google search algorithm documents:

1. The importance of click data.

Google has long claimed that it doesn't use click data for search rankings, but the leaked documents show that it is indeed an important ranking factor. For example, it includes things like “goodClicks,” “badClicks,” and “lastLongestClicks.” (Source)

: This suggests that it's important to write titles that people want to click on.

2. Domain Authority

Google has said many times that they don't use domain authority. However, the documentation includes an item called “siteAuthority,” which suggests that Google is measuring the authority of the site as a whole and using it to determine rankings. (Source)

: This suggests that the higher the domain authority, the higher the Google ranking.

3. Use of Chrome data

Google has claimed that it does not use Chrome browser data for search rankings. However, the leaked documents include a number of metrics that include Chrome data.

: This suggests that Chrome data could be used to evaluate website quality.

4. Sandbox for new websites

Google has stated that it does not sandbox new websites. However, the documents include an attribute called “hostAge,” which suggests that there is a system in place to sandbox new websites.

: This suggests that new pages may be penalized for high SERP rankings from Google's index.

5. User Experience (UX)

Google has claimed that user experience doesn't have much of an impact on search rankings. However, the documentation includes metrics such as click-through rate (CTR) and dwell time, which do indeed affect rankings. (Source)

: This still emphasizes the importance of quality content. This may explain why Wikipedia are appearing at the top of search engines.

6. The importance of author information

Google has stated that author information does not affect search rankings. However, the documentation suggests that Google is collecting author data on pages and using it to determine rankings.

: It suggests that author data in the meta tag can affect search rankings.

7. Content freshness

The documentation states that Google values the freshness of content. This means that Google will evaluate the freshness of your content and factor it into its ranking decisions. (Source)

: This suggests that you should constantly update your outdated content.

The documentation shows that link building remains an important ranking factor. It was emphasized that link diversity and relevance play an important role.

: Google was created by Stanford grad students who were familiar with the concept of thesis. It suggests that quality backlinks (citations) are still important.

These facts contradict Google's public claims and have shocked SEO experts. Of course, writing good quality content is the most important thing, regardless of whether it appears in the algorithm or not.

Conclusion and future outlook

The leak has once again highlighted the issue of Google's transparency around its search algorithm. The document's content is often at odds with Google's past statements, raising questions about its credibility. However, SEO experts still stress the importance of creating high-quality, user-centric content and constantly improving optimization strategies through experimentation and testing.

Reference documentation

Share article
Join the Inblog newsletter today!
RSSPowered by inblog