Google Soft 404 Update Blamed for Ranking Issues Google Confirms Update Could Be Causing Problems for Some

author image Written by: Nicole McCormick           Categories - In The News, SEO

Last week, Google made some updates to how it detects soft 404s, and now, this subtle change has led to ranking issues for some websites, according to Search Engine Roundtable.

Google Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller confirmed that the change had occurred in a recent webmaster hangout when the issue was brought up by participant Olaf Olleck Kopp.

Kopp didn’t get into specifics, but further explained his predicament on Twitter.

Mueller responded, saying: “As far as I could tell from from the information I have so far, is it’s essentially a small change we made in the soft 404 detection and how that’s picking things up in weird ways.”

Mueller also added that “with the other people I was able to pick up the URLs and send them to the team and I think they’re looking into what is happening there.”

Other digital marketing industry folk then took to Twitter to demonstrate the Search Console issues they experienced with the soft 404s, and the subsequent decrease in Google Search desktop rankings.

It’s unclear whether the soft 404 update is only causing reporting issues in Google Search Console, or if it is actually what has been affecting rankings.

Search Engine Roundtable writer Barry Schwartz asked Mueller this directly on Twitter, but has yet to receive a response. Stay tuned.

READ MORE: Bug in How Google Detects Soft 404s May Be Causing Traffic Losses  

READ MORE: Soft 404 Errors Guide

READ MORE: 404 vs. Soft 404 Errors: What’s the Difference & How to Fix Both  

Nicole McCormick

Nicole is a wordsmith wizard, passionate about the written word and an avid storyteller who uses creatively crafted prose to help bring your brand’s story to the next level. A former journalist with writing credits in both local and national news publications and a few newspaper awards under her belt, Nicole now enjoys telling your stories and finding new and creative ways to create valuable content that resonates with audiences in the digital landscape.

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