Update July 2015: Penguin update from Google.
Since this blog post was written Google has made a statement about the next Penguin update. Get all the information on this latest update on our new blog post.
These days, no one wants to p-p-pick up a penguin – not an online penguin anyway! The Penguin 3:0 algorithm update is the latest algorithm update to be rolled out by Google – and if you have a poor back-link profile and you’ve noticed a sudden drop in traffic then you’ve probably been hit, which is scary for any online business.
It was launched last Friday on the 17th October 2014 and is expected to continue to roll out over the next few weeks. This means that while you may not have been hit today, you could be tomorrow – so it’s worth double checking your back-link profile and removing any links which could result in a penalty.
What is the Penguin 3:0 Update?
Google is the largest search engine used in the UK. It’s precisely for this reason why so many businesses and online marketers are keen to keep abreast with the latest algorithm updates.
Algorithms are an essential part of Google, and it’s one of the ways they are able to provide relevant search results to their users. It effectively acts as a mathematical equation which sifts through all of the websites on the internet and grades them depending on the type of links pointing to that particular website, the quality of those links, the topic of the websites which are linking to that website and the relevancy of those links.
Unfortunately, in the past many SEO professionals built lots of links which were paid, low quality or irrelevant – and while that would have gained a quick win in the past, today it can result in a penalty.
Who Should be Worried About the Penguin 3.0 Update?
It’s hard to say, however in the past websites which showed evidence of the following, were targeted;
- Spammy back inks
- Paid back links
- Low quality directories
- Exact match anchor text
- Irrelevant links
And while these are still contributing factors, the algorithm has been updated to consider other factors regarding your back-link profile. Identifying what these factors are can be very difficult and unfortunately for the most part only time will tell.
This update is a world-wide update which will affect all versions of Google. This means that all websites, regardless of their language or region could be open to an attack.
Affecting 1% of All English Queries
In April 2012, the Penguin algorithm update affected 3.1% of queries – this is a dramatic drop when compared with the estimated 1% of queries which are meant to be affected. For this reason, many within the industry are dubbing the Penguin 3.0 update as a refresh as opposed to a complete update – meaning that a larger update could still be in the pipeline.
Watch this space!
What Happens When You Get Hit By Penguin?
Keeping an eye on your analytics is essential if you want to spot the early warning signs. Firstly, fluctuations in organic traffic are to be expected, however if there is a sudden dip and a downward trend following on from this dip (which suspiciously coincides with the update) then you could have been hit.
Secondly, keep a close eye on your ranking positions. Sure, ranking position will always rise and fall to some degree, but if there is a larger than average drop, with no recovery, then you may have been hit by a penalty.
Lastly, you can use Panguin which is a nifty tools which correlates drops against algorithm updates. While this is a useful tool, it’s worth considering other factors which could be the cause behind a drop in traffic – for instance a seasonal drop, a promotion the week before etc.
What Does This Mean for Businesses Who are Affected?
For businesses, an algorithm update could see a website disappear from the search results – which will have a negative impact on the ROI. Therefore, it’s important to follow best practices to avoid any future attacks.
And for those that are penalised, it’s important to take remedial action straight away to ensure your website recovers as quickly as possible.
How to Recover from a Penguin 3.0 Update
If you believe that you’ve been hit by the Penguin 3.0 update it’s important to have a recovery plan in place. Take a look at your back-link profile and identify any poor links which could be the cause of a penalty.
When you review the links pointing to your website, review each individual website to identify;
- Spammy links
- Irrelevant links
- Paid links
- Exact match anchor text
- Bulk guest blogs
Once you’ve identified links which are classified as ‘spammy’ it’s time to contact each website owner and request the removal of the link to your website. It’s not uncommon for website owners to request payment before removing the link – do not pay them.
Simply collate a list of all the website owners you have contacted and who have not removed the links and upload them to the disavow tool.
If you’re unsure how to distinguish a good link from a bad link, it’s worth getting in touch with an expert. At Anicca we offer a Penguin recovery service – for more details call us today on 0116 298 7488.
Is There Any Benefits to the New Penguin 3.0 Update?
Yes, if you were previously a victim of the Penguin Algorithm update and you took remedial action then you should be seeing a positive impact on both your rankings within the search results and the volume of organic traffic to your website.
So, for some websites the Penguin 3.0 update is a welcomed refresh.
Get in Touch with Anicca Today!
Need to speak with someone who can help you to identify a potential penalty or recover from a potential Penguin algorithm update – then be sure to get in touch with the expert team here at Anicca.
We’ve helped a number of different website owners recover from an algorithm update, so we’re confident we can help you too. Telephone us today on 0116 298 7488 to speak with a member of our team today.