What is a Google dance?

The Google database exists on many servers spread throughout the world. A large update of the Google databases can take several days.

A Google dance is when the Google servers are out of sync with one another. Your web site could be the #7 result for your main keywords on one Google server, and the #1 result on another server.

How Often Does The Google Dance Happen?

The name "Google Dance" was in the past used to describe the period that a major index update of the Google search engine are being implemented. These major Google index update occured on average every 36 days or 10 times per year. It was easiest be identified by significant changes in search results, and by an updating of Google's cache of all indexed pages. These changes would be evident from one minute to the next. But the update did not proceed as a switch from one index to another like the flip of a switch. In fact, it took several days to finish the complete update of the index.

Checking The Google Dance:

Until January 2004, Google had 12 main www servers online, which were as follows:

  • www-ex.google.com - (where you get when you type www.google.com)
  • www-sj.google.com - (which can also be accessed at www2.google.com)
  • www-va.google.com - (which can also be accessed at www3.google.com)
  • www-dc.google.com
  • www-ab.google.com
  • www-in.google.com
  • www-zu.google.com
  • www-cw.google.com
  • www-fi.google.com - found in May 2003.
  • www-gv.google.com - found in August 2003.
  • www-gv2.google.com - found in September 2003.
  • www-kr.google.com - found in October 2003.

At some point in January, these servers stopped accepting connections, and the only servers easy to connect to were:

  • www.google.com
  • www2.google.com
  • www3.google.com

At any time during an index update you can check the Google servers, and they will display sometime wildly differing results, thus they are said to be "dancing", and hence the name "Google Dance".

Importance Of The Google Dance

For most people, this event in and of itself was not important. However for anyone in the search engine optimization industry it was a period of note. Pages got temporarily dropped. Sometimes it lasted a day.