Google Penguin Update : The effects

May 3rd, 2012 | By | Category: search engines

What Is The Google Penguin Update ?

On the 24th of April 2012 Google released an update to their search engine algorithms. Google named it the Penguin Update. This update is set to target Webspam and certain Black hat techniques that are commonly used to trick the search engines for gaining higher search engine rankings. 

Google makes the following Notes The change will decrease rankings for sites that we believe are violating Google’s existing quality guidelines.

The Google Penguin update is said to effect about 3.1 percent of search queries. Taking this figure and comparing it to the previous update (Google Panda) which effected about 12 percent of search queries then its clear that this update is smaller then the last.

So what's changed with Google in the Penguin Update?

Google never disclose the full details of their changes but they do give us slight indications. Some I cover below and others are based on my findings and the findings of many intelligent strategists and active professionals in the Internet Marketing and Search Engine Optimization Niche.

Authority Sites take a larger share

The first point I would like to note is how Google has started to give more top result spots to Authority sites such as Amazon. This has of course effected many Affiliate marketers and smaller businesses who are looking to remain competitive in the search engines using Organic methods. There is much frustration amongst webmasters due to the adverse effects that  the Penguin update has had on their sites. 

Lets look at some areas that have been effected 

Offsite Optimization effects

Offsite Optimization as we know is everything related to your Domain away from your website, basically link building. When looking at link building then its very important that we understand how this can be looked at and determined by Google. For this then its important that we have a little understanding of how things are calculated for each website. We can never be precise as details like this are never disclosed by Google. 

Links will be valued and credited individually however they will form a backlink profile for a website which will consist of all links pointing to the site. The best way to look at it is not on a individual backlink bases only but also as a total backlink rating for your profile. What this means is that with time as your backlinks get found then your full backlink profile grows and starts to show patterns which make it easy for Google to see and judge the quality of your backlinks as a whole.

Googles update penalizes certain types of backlinks that are commonly used to manipulate them in order to gain higher search engine rankings, Backlinks such as profile links, blog comments, link farms and low quality links in general. If your site relied heavily on these types of links then its likely you have been effected by this update. One thing to take away from this update is the need to diversify your backlink profile. Dont rely on one type of link source only.

Anchor text Links

Ive read a few discussions on anchor text links and how they have been effected. I think its very important that we understand that in the same way Google want us to use synonyms when working on our onsite optimization then the same should be followed with your anchor text too.  Its also very important to create raw http links as each website profile will also consist of a anchor text profile and if this looks unnatural then you could be penalized.

Vary your anchor text links but also concentrate on building raw http links, think of your website as building a profile on the internet and make it look real.

Low Quality Links

Some signs of low quality sites which should be avoided

  • Too many adds on the website
  • The site doesnt get updated, Lack of new unique content
  • Lots of new content that doesnt make sense or autoblogs
  • A website that doesnt get moderated
  • Too many outbound links

Exact Match Domains

Ive also read many discussions on Exact match domains and how they have been effected. My honest opinion on this is that there really is no way Google can penalize a website for the domain name. This is unfair and if they did this then im certain many would contest them at court. One thing to note which is very clear to me is that many exact match domain name owners buy these domains for a quick ranking. With the purchase of the domain webmasters will also go and mass build backlinks using the same anchor text and quick backlink fix areas which have been penalized in this Google Penguin update.

Onsite Optimization

Onsite Optimization guidelines have remained the same. If you over optimize then you will get penalized, if you write content with links in it that are out of contents then you will also be penalized. If you are keyword stuffing then again a penalty. These areas we should already know and learned from previous Google Updates. You can read more on Matt Cutts Blog post.

Google Penguin Conclusion

The changes that Google Penguin brings to the search engines will certainly be tweaked by Google so dont be surprised to see rankings drop and fall. Our key focus should be on quality content and building a quality website profile. Keep your backlink profile and anchor text profile strong along with solid fresh content and you will have nothing to fear.

Direction Forward

One thing that has been clear for a very long time is the need to build a social presence. This means making use of high Authority web 2.0 websites such as facebook, twitter, youtube etc – The only difficulty is time, Do we decide to spend our days building our social presence or managing our business and contents? 

For myself then I manage both very well. In fact I set out to help webmasters all over the world so if you would like to take advantage of my system that will look after your social presence then please view

I hope this Article on the Google Penguin update has cleared up many areas and helps you to optimize your site for the better.

Google Penguin Update

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