“We anecdotally know that Google is continuously testing content and shuffling the search results, but it’s tough to find hard data about it.
Google tests new content on different positions for all queries it deems relevant. Interestingly, this understanding is very imprecise at first and then gets better over time. Content first ranks for many queries on lower positions, and then for fewer queries at higher positions if the content is of high quality.
Competitive and high-volume queries often have a sort of “probation period”. About two weeks after publishing, the article starts to rank for high-volume queries. Sometimes, they start on page 10, sometimes on page one.
For some queries, Google can identify the relevance and authority right away and rank a page high.
Once they “grooved in”, rankings don’t fluctuate as much anymore. Google has made a decision where the page fits in for a keyword and sticks to it until the page gains more links or someone else published a piece of content that competes with it (or Google updates its understanding of entities).
I observed that It takes Google 3-4 days to figure out where content should rank initially. From there, Google keeps testing how the piece of content would perform for different keywords throughout its lifecycle, one impression at a time.
Content needs to prove itself; nothing is guaranteed.“