Google’s John Mueller confirmed an unusual SEO myth that the date filter in Google’s search tools will show you how pages ranked in search results during that date range. John confirmed that this is not true, all it does is filter the search results that were published around that date range.
The date filter tool in Google Search isn’t some kind of time machine to go back and see how well a site ranked for a query in the past.
Chris Silver Smith asked the question after having some sort of argument with an SEO who believed this to be true. He said on Twitter: “I had an absurd discussion with a so-called SEO ‘expert’ who insists that the date range search tool shows historical content ratings, and not just content posted within the specified range. Could you confirm that no? They don’t represent historical classifications?”
Hi @JohnMu – I had a silly argument with a so-called SEO “expert” who insists that the date range search tool shows historical content ratings, and not just content posted within the specified range. Could you confirm that it does not represent historical rankings? pic.twitter.com/cuCtWkmlXf
John replied that Chris is right, that it doesn’t show how the Google rankings were during that date range:
You’re right – it’s just a filter for the recognized date on a page (which is sometimes hard to fix). The advanced search page (https://t.co/NH05DOHtiw) uses the phrase “refine results by…” for this.
Let, Danny Sullivan also said the same answer, saying “it doesn’t”.
Funny stuff we sometimes make up and I guess I can understand why someone would think this but I never imagined this before so I’m glad we have Twitter.