The Google Search Status Dashboard provides some interesting status information on the systems that power Google Search and shows the issues that affect many sites or users. The dashboard also shows the latest ranking updates made to Google Search that are relevant to website owners and should therefore be monitored by SEO practitioners.
You can learn more about how Google makes improvements to Search and why it shares updates, on its blog about how Google updates Search. You can also view all the incidents reported for ranking since December 2020.
A recent article on Search Engine Roundtable reported some comments from John Mueller of Google about updates and whether these are ever wrong. He admits that these changes are never perfect, but it’s an ongoing process of developing and improving results, with updates being extensively tested before being rolled out.
When an issue with Google Search is detected, the Search Relations team and Search engineering team work together to resolve the issue and communicate it to website owners. While an issue is ongoing, the Search Relations team provides regular updates.
Updates may include:
- Information about the issue, such as the scale of the issue or regions affected.
- Timeline for when the next update can be expected.
- Progress towards fixing the issue, such as when the root cause has been found, or if there are workarounds.
The status dashboard may use the following statuses:
- Available – The system is generally working and available.
- System information – There’s been an update or change to a system (for example, a ranking update started rolling out, or Googlebot started crawling over HTTP/2).
- System disruption – Websites may experience degraded system performance due to a common third-party (for example, DNS servers).
- System outage – The system isn’t functioning to a large extent, and the issue is affecting a large number of sites or users.
The issue may be isolated to your web pages, or it may be impacting a limited number of searchers or websites. If you’re a website owner, you can contact the Google Search Central help community about any issues that are being experiencing which are not listed on the dashboard.
Also for further reference, issues and updates reported on the dashboard are available on the Summary and History page for 5 years.