Google rolled out it’s updated Penguin algorithm on 22nd May 2013, referred to as Penguin 2.0. About 2.3% of search engine results have been affected, so what does this update mean and will your website be affected?
Last year Google Penguin 1.0 launched and affected a lot of sites in a big way through rankings and traffic loss. Penguin 1.0 was created to address the issue of low quality, spammy and unnatural links pointing to a website which included:
Paid text links
Guest posts on low quality, irrelevant sites
Links from questionable sites
Penguin 1.0 lived up to its expectations and companies that didn’t practice safe and white hat SEO methods got hit in a big way.
Penguin 2.0 is the new generation Penguin and just as 1.0 focused on dodgy link profiles and the use of heavy exact match anchor text with links, Penguin 2.0 does too, but the new Penguin dives a lot deeper.
The first version mainly looked at a websites home page, whereas the new Penguin 2.0 looks at the quality of all of a sites pages. Not only does it look at your inbound links but it also looks at the content on your website too.
This new and powerful penguin can distinguish a lot better whether content is good or bad and if it is actually useful to a user or created just to push your keywords. Penguin 2.0 is there to look after the user, to make sure that they get great content which is related to what they’re looking for.
As always well-written and unique content is key to getting good rankings. Great content will be consumed by users and shared around the web through their social profiles and they will link to the content itself from their own websites. This is a natural linking process and you will get great rankings if you can achieve this. But if most of your links come from unrelated and untrustworthy websites, this is usually accredited to poor content and in turn you will see a negative affect with your rankings.
If you practice high quality SEO methods and write fantastic unique content on your website then you shouldn’t have anything to worry about, but if you use black hat methods and don’t have the user in mind then be warned…its only a matter of time before Google hits you with a penalty.
Below is a video from Matt Cutts, the Head of Google’s Webspam team talking about what we should expect in the next few months in terms of SEO for Google.
How can you recover from Google Penguin 2.0?
If you’ve been affected by the Google Penguin 2.0 update or you are worried that you could be, then there are some things you can do which could help.
• Remove as many unnatural/spammy links pointing to your website as possible
• Disavow links that you cant remove (for further info on this check out this great post on using the Disavow tool)
• Start to regularly build quality links and write fantastic, unique content on your website
You should focus on eliminating the bad links and replacing them with good ones.
If you concentrate on providing great value to your users through quality content, then you will be rewarded. Another big part of the SEO equation is through Google Authorship tags, Google+, social signals and the use of rich snippets. Put yourself in your visitor’s shoes and stay on the safe side when it comes to SEO.