What Is The Google Penguin Update?
One of Google’s most talked about algorithmic changes since the Panda update in February 2011 rolled out on the 24th April. Because it impacted so many websites, causing many to lose rankings and in the process, most of their web traffic, it has been talked about so much.
Needless to say, this can be catastrophic for most businesses that heavily relies on traffic referrals from Google. But what was the “Penguin update” and why did the “Penguin update” affect so many websites?
It is Google’s job as the leading search engine to make sure that the results that it produces are relevant and of a high quality when we use Google in some way or another to find information. Users maintain their faith in Google and continue to use the service that way. The latest update was said to be for webmasters that were over optimising their websites, building spammy back links and generally abusing the Google guidelines in order to rank better within the organic search results. Penguin was implemented to make sure that sites that over the years which had been gaming the system somewhat, would be penalised by the algorithmic filter and demoted in the search results, which was the primary reason for its implementation. Considering that Google receives hundreds of millions of search queries every day, millions of websites are being penalised and around 3.1% of search queries which are said to be affected by the update.
The Penguin update is not a manual penalty which is worth noting, where a human has followed say a spam report and taken action. Based on certain criteria which assesses whether or not a site has been over optimised or been building spammy back links, the Penguin update is an algorithmic update which filters out sites.
It is pretty likely that you were hit by it if you lost pretty much all of your websites traffic from Google just after the 24th April. Sites appear to retain their page rank and continue to be crawled and indexed which is one thing that is noticeable. It could be that these sites have now been devalued meaning that the links that were pointing to your site previously have also been devalued if you obtained many low quality links or paid links. Due to a devaluation of those incoming links, this can appear to be a penalty but in fact is purely a natural drop in rankings.
The future of marketing of your site, for us, is clear. A different approach to your online marketing is what you will need to start adopting if you have been affected by the Penguin update.