It seems like just when everyone got used to the new Google algorithms with Panda, they came out with the Penguin update. People woke up one morning to find that their websites did not rank in the top five pages of search results when they had been on the front page the day before. Webmasters and SEO companies were scrambling to figure out how to get things back to normal and it seemed like nothing they did made any changes. Google’s explanation was to give it time; that things needed to realign before they would improve. So, what was the deal?
Many websites were getting high placement on search results even though the content was not very impressive. A lot of “content farms” were writing articles that were either obvious paraphrasing from other, more reputable sites, or full of unimportant information. Google wants fresh, accurate information that will inform people of something. They do not want a bunch of sentences stuffed with keywords. Make sure everything you have on your site has been proofread for spelling, grammar and fact errors.
There was a bunch of companies created that would write articles that had backlinks to other websites that had nothing to do with each other. Google Penguin took a good, hard look at how it graded the number and type of backlinks to a site. If your site was being reached by means of these link schemes, you probably took a big hit. Practices such as trading links back and forth between non-related sites, or buying and selling a bunch of links are against Google’s guidelines. Having people click through to your site to only click back or leave the site quickly will penalize you. It is better to have a few solid backlinks than hundreds of links from sites that have nothing to do with yours. Spam includes having articles that say the same thing repeatedly. Anytime you update your website, make sure the information you are putting out is new. Even if you performed a study and all the results were information you experienced on your own, repeating the same information every time you add to your site could penalize you.
Penguin is about Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is real and very important when it comes to how many people will see your website on the results when they perform a search. Consumers want to be able to count on the first page of results to give them the information they need. Google is looking at the whole site, not just one article, not just one page, but everything all together. You need to look at the whole picture if you want to be on that first page of results. Make sure the links to your page originate on good sites and that all your information is verifiable with proper resources.
Penguin is not a bad thing and it was not a mistake. In the long run, if you have a good website, you will benefit greatly. All the riff-raff will be gone, or at least moved way down on the results. Consumers, clients and anyone else trying to find the information you are sharing will come to you more easily and learn to trust your site more readily than when it seemed everything was some type of scam.
This guest post was written on behalf of Site2You.