Many related to speed, freshness, and spell-checking, but one major announcement was tighter integration of Panda into the main search index. Barely a week after Panda 3.5, Google rolled out yet another Panda data update. The implications of this update were unclear, and it seemed that the impact was relatively small.
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In fact, the IPO created 7 billionaires and 900 millionaires from the early stockholders. The stock offering also made news because of the unusual way it was handled. Shares were sold in a public auction intended to put the average investor on an equal footing with financial industry professionals.
Rankings fluctuated for 5-6 days, although no single day was high enough to stand out. Google made a significant change to the Top 10, limiting it to 7 results for many queries. Our research showed that this change rolled out over a couple of days, finally impacting about 18% of the keywords we tracked. Google announced a change in the way it was handling exact-match domains . This led to large-scale devaluation, reducing the presence of EMDs in the MozCast data set by over 10%. Google announced a targeted algorithm update to take on niches with notoriously spammy results, specifically mentioning payday loans and porn.
Since the Panda 3.0 series ran out of numbers at 3.9, the new update was dubbed 3.9.1. After some mixed signals, Google confirmed the 22nd Panda update, which appears to have been data-only. This came on the heels of a larger, but unnamed update around November 19th. Multiple Google trackers picked up unusual activity, which co-occurred with a report of widespread DNS errors in Google Webmaster Tools. Google did not confirm an update, and the cause and nature of this flux was unclear. More than two years after the original DMCA/"Pirate" update, Google launched another update to combat software and digital media piracy.