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Possible Google Algorithm Update – September 2021

Glenn Gabe, SEO Consultant at G-Squared Interactive tweeted regarding a possible algorithm shift detected between September 16th and September 17th.

“Definitely seeing some sites with a lot of volatility,” he said, earmarking this date range. “It’s always an interesting time of year, as Google’s algos can shift (leading into fall from summer).”

He’s right – in 2019, just before the pandemic, we saw a significant core algorithm update in September. The most affected sites were in the YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) verticals. We also saw the BERT algorithm deployed in search results just one month later, which was reported to have impacted 10% of all search inquiries.


glenn gabe tweets about algorithm 1

glenn gabe tweets about algorithm 2


Indeed, multiple forum members from reputable SEO sites began asking about possible explanations for fluctuating rankings around this timeframe last week. Unstable rankings are an indicative sign of algorithm updates, as there is a bit of a “learning curve” as these algorithms process websites and implement changes to the SERP.

While the fluctuations are not dramatic, they’re worth acknowledging and keeping an eye on. If you have seen some fluctuation in your rankings over the past week, it’s possible you are charting this update yourself.

Gabe did not recommend any changes, noting the phenomenon as more of an interesting change of events (rather than a full-blown impact update).

These drops appear to be most noticeable in the United States, Australia, and Canada.

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