What’s the Latest on the Google Penguin Update? Here’s our Take for a Website Review
Google’s brand is built on providing an effective search tool to web-users. It so happens that that brand has been very successful as Google is still the world’s most popular search engine by a large margin. To preserve its reputation and to continue to deliver a superior service to users, Google has to continually update its product to ensure that it provides useful results. When it comes to search engines, the most important thing is accuracy. The goal is to provide users with exactly what they are looking for based on their search terms.
A high ranking in the results of the world’s most widely used search engine can be very profitable. As a result, there are numerous companies attempting to find easy ways to the top. With a website review, deceptive practices can become apparent like keyword stuffing which tend to diminish the user experience, which in turn reflects badly on Google.
Panda and Penguin are algorithms that are designed to make Google’s search more accurate and thereby ensure a better customer experience. Without these updates, search engine results would be full of inaccurate spam results. Panda and Penguin filter out low quality content and protect the user from worthless results. Panda was the first update and was rolled out in 2011. Sites without much content and those with low quality content were targeted and saw significant reductions in their traffic from Google.
What Does Penguin Do?
The Penguin update was launched in 2012 and is focused on sites that breach Google’s content quality guidelines. Backlinks are the focus of this update. Backlinks are one of the oldest and most widely known ways to build a website’s rank. The more links you have pointing to your site from quality sites, the better it is for your rank. However, some sites have cheated by buying backlinks or otherwise creating unnatural backlinks. The point of Penguin was to filter these sites out. If your site has a large number of links from sites that Google determines are of low quality, you will likely see a reduction in rank because of Penguin.
How to Recover From the Effects of Penguin
Both Panda and Penguin are run periodically to filter out low quality websites. If Penguin has negatively affected your site’s rank, you will have to remove all of the unnatural links that point to it. If you are not able to remove them, Google provides a disavow tool so that you can ask for those links to no longer be counted. The next time Google refreshes, your site will be seen as trustworthy again. Note that it can take several months for your site’s disavow file to be processed, so it may not regain Google’s trust for some time. Also, it is important to know how the disavow tool works before using it or you would wind up harming your site’s rank instead of helping it.
Keep in mind that if your site’s previous ranking was based on unnatural links, you may not regain the rank you previously had even after disavowing them. It is different from a manual unnatural links penalty in that filing a reconsideration request will not help.
If you believe your Google results are being hurt by Penguin, get a free website review to assessment your digital marketing. This will reveal the gaps in performance, like rankings, to give you a better understanding where stand and where you need to go.
Marketing Matters Inbound is an inbound marketing firm specializing in online conversions, content strategy, PPC campaigns and traditional media placement. Our experience in B2B digital marketing and traditional media allows us to deliver results through a strategic media mix. We believe in aligning and merging marketing and sales/operations for optimal return on your marketing investment.