Marketing 2 min read

Algorithm Updates Reportedly Tank Search Traffic to Pirate Sites

Image Credit: PhotoMIX-Company |

Image Credit: PhotoMIX-Company |

Pirate sites reportedly suffered a significant decline in search traffic in 2020.

Google changes its search algorithm between 500 to 600 times every year. Expectedly, these changes affect search traffic to various sites differently.

While some websites gain more visitors from the search engine, others suffer a significant traffic decline.

In a recent report, TorrentFreak and piracy tracking company MUSO published insight on the topic. The duo analyzed how the recent Google algorithm updates affected traffic to pirate sites.

The report from TorrentFreak reads:

“With help from the piracy tracking company MUSO, which also provides data for the EU’s piracy research, we are able to get some more insight into the pirate site traffic from search engines.”

Here’s a breakdown of the findings.

How Algorithm Updates Reduced Search Traffic to Pirate Sites

Search traffic to pirate sites hit a downward trend in January 2020. While there was a brief spike in March due to the pandemic, the traffic reportedly hit a freefall in May 2020.

According to the report, these dates are no mere coincidence. In fact, both traffic decline aligned with the major algorithm update announcements from Google.

The January 2020 core update was mildly effective at reducing search traffic to pirate sites. However, the May update seems to have done the most damage, with a 20 percent decline in traffic in the month alone.

Google hasn’t officially confirmed that its search algorithm updates targeted pirate sites. Yet, the data suggests a clear link between the algo updates and organic traffic decline.

The report from TorrentFreak reads:

“To confirm our findings, we spoke to the operator of one of the largest torrent sites, who prefers to remain anonymous. Without sharing our findings, he reported a 35% decline in Google traffic over the past year, which is in line with MUSO’s data.”

While Google rolled out another core update back in December 2020, the MUSO analysis didn’t cover that period.

Read More: Edgy Explains: The Google Algorithm and How it Works

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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