If you’ve recently found that your red-hot rankings have all turned cold, it’s very possible that you could’ve been hit by the powers of Penguin 3.0. Last Friday on October 17th, Google rolled out their latest update to their Penguin algorithm. Penguin is designed to target websites with ‘spammy’ backlink profiles that appear unnatural.
Fortunately, the results have been mostly positive. Gary llyes, Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst and Search Quality Engineer, originally broke the news of the impending update at Search marketing Expo East. At the same time, he mentioned that the new Penguin update will make life ‘easier a bit’ for webmasters and, for most people, will make it a ‘delight’.
Penguin was last updated in October of 2013 and looks mostly at the links directed towards your website. Since then, SEOs have been scrambling to get their sites squeaky-clean and (if they’ve been investing in less-than-scrupulous tactics) making sure there are no traces of any ill-bought links.
For us, we’ve been able to transition through the path of Penguin without any damage at all. We can put this down to not taking any shortcuts and taking care to keep our clients’ link profiles looking natural. If you’ve been attentively pruning your link profile you’ll likely have no problems with Penguin 3.0. Indeed, what we’ve seen from quite a few of our sites is that their traffic has taken a step up because of this update.
How big is the impact of Penguin 3.0?
Perhaps the most notable example comes from the AutoTrader website. On the day of Penguin 3.0’s launch, the Autotrader website was ranking in the top 20 for more than 1,000 more keywords than during the previous day. Powerful stuff.
Smaller sites have been recovering from penalties suffered from last year’s Penguin 2.1, but we’ve already seen those steady climbs over the past 12 months – after all, SEO isn’t something you just do for a day or two every time there’s a major update. Oh no, we’re in it for the long haul.
It seems, at least for more attentive SEOs and their clients, that Penguin 3.0 will actually be a positive change. For others, it’s likely to be yet another kick to get their rears in gear and leave their old tactics behind.