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Wondering about the Google August 2023 Core Update? How is it different from the March 2023 update, causing ranking shifts?

This update rolled out from August 22 to September 7, 2023, with a less turbulent lead-up.

Just a reminder: The Google August 2023 broad core update began on August 22, 2023, and wrapped up 16 days later on September 7, 2023.

Let’s see what some of the data providers have to say about this update.

Table Of Content


According to Semrush data, the August 2023 core update reached peak volatility of 9.3 on August 25th, a few days after its rollout began.

In comparison, the March 2023 core update only peaked at about 8. Here’s a breakdown of the volatility peaks during their respective rollout periods:

Source: SEMrush

You can clearly see that while the March 2023 core update had wide volatility spikes, the August 2023 core update did not. It was just continuously heated before, during, and after the update finished rolling out.

This next graph compares the peak volatility across verticals between the March and August 2023 core updates:

Here’s a chart illustrating the overall change in various verticals when comparing the March and August 2023 core updates:


Mark Traphagen, from seoClarity, shared insights from the seoClarity Rank Fluctuation tracker (US keyword data).

He noted an intriguing observation: “We observed a spike in volatility, reaching 51%, on the final day of the update, which gradually subsided over the weekend.”

RankRanger by Similarweb

RankRanger plotted the average position changes for all the Google core updates since December 2020. When they looked at the average fluctuations for the August update, they saw a position change.

If you compare the March and August updates regarding position volatility, the August update exhibited higher levels of volatility.

End Note

When your site faces an algorithmic hit, pinpointing solutions can be challenging. Google core updates, even more so. Past advice and data emphasize their broad impact on overall quality. Therefore, if a core update affects your site, consider taking a step back, assess your entire website, and work on it.

Tuhin Das-image

Being in the content writing landscape for 4+ years, Tuhin likes to go deep into the minds of his readers through his writing. He loves sharing content related to SEO, digital marketing, content writing, copywriting, Education, and lifestyle. Besides his inherent inclination towards creating content, he is also a sports enthusiast and travel freak.