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As some of you in the SEO community may have heard, Google launched its 6th PENGUIN releaseThe first so far after more than a year from the last Penguin Update. Today, Penguin roll out is always anticipated especially by those whose websites got hit from the last release.  Although it may be too soon to see if any of your websites have been affected by the latest release, it’s never soon enough to make any updates necessary to comply with the new algorithm.  Here’s a quick summary of what Penguin 3.0 brings this time around along with some specific tips to make sure that your websites are not affected.

What does Penguin do?

  • Discounts suspicious, unnatural links
  • Makes sure high – quality, organic links are counted
  • Clears the Internet of spam
  • Penalize sites using spammy SEO tactics
  • With better and more relevant user’s search experience

What you need to know about Penguin 3.0

  • Penguin 3.0 is a global roll-out
  • It’s simply a refresh, not an update. (This means, the same algorithm is used so as to lift the penalty from sites that have fixed their issues and to check if they missed other offender sites.)
  • Less than 1% English queries will be affected
  • The release was officially confirmed by Google on October 20th
  • However, it will still continue to be rolled out in the next few weeks. (You may  need to wait until the roll-out is complete, if you still did not see any changes in your rankings)

Will this be bad news or good news for my site?

  • Good News – If you recently made some cleanup after getting hit, then it’s a good time to find out if the work you did will now gain positive results.
  • Bad News – If your site still carries bad link profiles. Don’t be surprised if you get a demotion.

 What should I do? My site has been targeted.

The same signals and factors will be run again since this is just a refresh and not an update. Experts predict that only those serious and repeat offenders are likely going to get hit who intentionally or not ignored and neglected to perform thorough clean-up even after the Penguin 1.0 and 2.0 update. The following are the primary profiling patterns and practice of getting hit:

  • Massive solicitation of link exchanges.
  • Buying and selling text links from high page rank websites.
  • Highly dependent on PR and article marketing integrated with keyword-rich anchor text.
  • Joining automated (spammy) Web/SEO directories.
  • Distributing spammy comment and forums.
  • Publishing articles with manipulative links on Low Quality sites.
  • Publishing articles with exact match anchor text.
  • Businesses that still uses auto-generated links and link networks.
  • Manipulative paid guest posts.

What else do I need to know?

Penguin is not human-driven unlike the other Google Algorithmic updates. It works on an algorithmic level that seeks spammy and suspicious inbound links. The downside of this is that this Sixth Penguin Release may affect businesses that are religiously practicing ethical SEO, but may be targeted by negative SEO.

Where does a negative SEO campaign come from?

A rival company that is maliciously building spammy links to your website

Your own SEO soldiers such as your marketing team, PR agency, etc…who may have carelessly set-up the wrong inbound links to your website. Hence, it is vital to entrust your SEO campaigns only to experienced, highly skilled specialist.

My site was not affected! Can I relax now?

This is not time for you to slack off. Not yet, even if you did not see any major impact in your ranking and traffic activity out of your organic search results. Google gave a hint: there will be a major update “after the holidays” so be prepared when that time comes.

Be Vigilant At All Times. Ascertain that you set up a system that will ensure your links are audited, analyzed and regularly monitored. Remove questionable links and onsite web spam.

Be Very Patient.  It’s true that cleaning up an affected site can be tedious, time consuming and costly. Remember, the results will be worth your effort.

Seek help. It is wise to invest on professional help who have deep technical understanding of all Google algorithm releases (not just penguin).

SEO is never a one time event but rather an ongoing process.  If you need any assistance with your Search Engine Marketing goals, be sure to contact our team ate MGR SEO Services.  We’ll be glad to review your existing website and provide you with recommendations for optimum rankings.

Until next time, this is Manuel Gil del Real (MGR)