So, Penguin 2.0 is finally here, and this time around, we were given plenty of warning.
Ever since Matt Cutts announced back in March to the world that the next generation of ‘Penguin’ was on its way, we have waited with baited breath. Some too the opportunity to ensure that their customer’s websites wouldn’t be hit by this anti web spam update, whilst others worrying didn’t do very much at all. The latter are now complaining as websites have been knocked from their treasured ‘page one’ spots and suffered the penalty of no traffic as their sites suddenly show up, buried on page 10 of the Google search results.
“It’s going to have a pretty big impact on web spam,” Google’s head of web spam, Matt Cutts, announced. “It’s a brand new generation of algorithms. The previous iteration of Penguin would essentially only look at the home page of a site. The newer generation of Penguin goes much deeper and has a really big impact in certain small areas.”
Cutts added more detail on what Penguin 2.0 encompasses in his blog post of Wednesday this week, where he announced not only that the roll-out was complete, but that it would also affect non-english search queries:
We started rolling out the next generation of the Penguin webspam algorithm this afternoon (May 22, 2013), and the rollout is now complete. About 2.3% of English-US queries are affected to the degree that a regular user might notice. The change has also finished rolling out for other languages world-wide. The scope of Penguin varies by language, e.g. languages with more webspam will see more impact.
This is the fourth Penguin-related launch Google has done, but because this is an updated algorithm (not just a data refresh), we’ve been referring to this change as Penguin 2.0 internally. For more information on what SEOs should expect in the coming months, see the video that we recently released.
In a follow up tweet earlier this month, industry professionals got another ‘heads up’ on the imminent arrival of Google’s latest web spam update, when Cutts tweeted: “we do expect to roll out Penguin 2.0 (next generation of Penguin) sometime in the next few weeks though.”
As a follow up to the roll-out of Penguin 2.0 and announcements of the same, Cutts released a video in Google Webmaster Help further outlining the changes made and what should be expected in terms of changes to search engine results.
As with the previous Penguin update, Google are targeting so-called “black hat” web spam, but in a more significant and visible way than last time. Indeed, already we know of some sites that may seem legitimate, but who have been hit because of the employment of ‘cheap’ SEO experts who have created lots of “web spam” which was acting as a ticking time-bomb, just waiting for Google to catch up.
Google are looking to deliver quality results to their users and so the old rule of thumb around quality content has seen those websites who have always adopted this approach benefiting.
Quality content that people want to see, will always trump any of the “black hat” techniques, and this has become ever more so obvious with the latest and no doubt further updates from Google in the future.
Check details in the video below from Matt Cutts: