Algorithm Rolled Out: Mid-May 2015.

Algorithm Summary: Overall Gist 

Google’s “Phantom update” is a collection of mostly unconfirmed Google upgrades that began rolling out in mid-May 2015. The algorithm changes have resulted in significant rank moves worldwide in several circumstances. However, it could detect no discernible compared to the Penguin or Panda updates. 

The Phantom updates in chronological order!

Since May 2013, 5 Google Phantom updates have been released.

Phantom I, beginning of May 2015: Google releases a fresh upgrade to the core algorithm but provides no further details. 

Phantom II, mid-June 2015: Several websites see more than 50% traffic drops. Google did not disclose an upgrade initially, but the effects on ranks were seen worldwide. An examination of the Phantom II update.

Phantom III, December 2015: There were swings in the SERPs after Google announced its quality ratter rules. It is assumed that the Phantom III update considered user intent and content quality. An examination of the Phantom III update

Phantom IV, July 2016: More than a year after Phantom III, Google reviewed quality signals, causing major ranking swings. Google has not acknowledged the upgrade, but the fourth iteration of the Phantom update is assumed. An examination of the Phantom IV upgrade.

Phantom V, February 2017: After much movement in the SERPs, the study revealed recognizable Phantom series patterns. An examination of the Phantom V update

What are the Phantom update’s consequences and goals?

No uniform group of websites was affected after the “Phantom” upgrade was released. However, one thing was certain: the rankings of some afflicted websites deteriorated quickly.

The “Phantom” modifications were primarily intended to increase the quality of web pages and thus the quality of search results. Google constantly tweaks the basic algorithm for this aim. Google does not specify which elements of the website are affected.


It’s unclear when Google will alter its fundamental algorithm next. In any case, the search engine business has drawn the webmaster’s attention to the problem of “website quality.” Due to the limited amount of information on the intricacies of the upgrades, web admins are forced to balance the highest possible quality in all areas.

Google’s mobile upgrade demonstrated how it could aggressively offer a new algorithm modification that web admins worldwide will adopt. With the Phantom modifications, it appears that a strategy of showing as few details as possible has been successful, causing website administrators to work even harder to optimize their pages. Google’s interest in high-quality websites is, of course, not selfless. Google’s reputation improves when it displays outstanding sites in its search results. This good brand effect is subsequently reflected in more advertising placements and clicks on those advertisements.

Phantom upgrades, like Penguin and Panda, will presumably one day be regularly updated so that the impacts are no longer as significant as they were with previous Phantom updates.

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