Google Penguin

Last month Google released a new webspam algorithm called Penguin that has the World Wide Web in a bit of a tizzy. Designed to help stop websites that violate its quality guidelines, Penguin has made many previously high-ranking websites disappear from search engine results. If your site has been affected by the Penguin update there are some steps you can take to get your site back up and running.

Penguin is an automated algorithm, there are no humans involved in its decision making once it was turned on, and because of this Google are apparently not planning on making any manual exceptions. If your site has been hit with Penguin the best thing you can do is review your content to ensure it meets Google’s guidelines. Check your messages at Google Webmaster Central, if they’ve contacted you about spam before then their emails will flag the issues you need to correct. You can also leave feedback through Google’s Webmaster forum if you feel you’ve been incorrectly affected. Remember, Google introduced this algorithm to help searchers find the best websites for their criteria, their priority is the searchers, so if you leave additional comments be sure to explain how your site provides unique and relevant content for searchers (and then make sure it actually does) rather than talk about how much business you’ve lost.

If you’re not sure if Penguin has affected your site, take a look at your traffic logs. Penguin went live on April 24th, so if you saw a drop in traffic after that then it’s likely you’ve been hit. If you’ve seen a rise, congratulations, you’ve benefitted. And if there was no change then Penguin had no real impact on you.

The algorithm is looking for websites that have a disproportionately large number of links in its content, in other words, link over-optimised sites. Make sure the links you use are from websites or domains in the same niche, not all of them need to be but there do need to be links relevant to your subject matter included in the mix. In essence, Google is looking for websites that offer relevant and useful information to its users, and is devaluing anchor text links while replacing it with niche relevant links as a means to guarantee quality. Ensuring your website meets those criteria will help keep it’s rank in their search results and minimise any affect Penguin may have on your business.

Tags: , , ,