We read the same forums as everyone else, whether it be SearchEngineland, or even SEroundtable! These blogs are a must, for professionals, and individuals alike. In some cases, the comment threads on these websites are more informative than the articles themselves! One of the most common threads is, regarding the Penguin update. Much misinformation is spread about this algorithm, and when it’ll be refreshed. After all, it’s been 10 months since it was officially refreshed, and since then, no mention of it.
That’s crazy. In SEO world, 10 months is a long time.
What’s a person to do, if they’ve eliminated as many links as possible? Do you just wait?
Hard to say.
Google has used specific terminology to describe Penguin. It’s not a penalty – it’s an algorithm. If you’re “hit” by it, you’re not hit with a penalty, you’re simply not in line with the algorithm’s definition of what is acceptable. Hypothetically, if you correct that misalignment, you should fall right into whatever Google position you belong.
Now, let’s rewind a bit. It’s common knowledge that Google doesn’t always reveal everything, when it initially happens. After all – Hummingbird had been out for a month, or perhaps more, before Google even announced it. Google announced that Panda was built-into the “base” algorithm, and would be refreshed on a recurring 25-35 day cycle. No one even bothers reporting it, and that includes Google.
The last time we saw an algorithm update, where Panda was even mentioned, was Panda 4.0 — and that’s because it was a huge update (imagine upgrading the engine in your car). Because of the sheer magnitude of the endeavor, it needed to be mentioned.
But now, it’s radio silence as far as Panda goes.
Well…what if Google’s figured out a way to integrate certain Penguin variables, into the “main”/”base” algorithm? It’s not too far fetched when you consider Panda, and how they were able to program it into the base algorithm.
Panda 4.0 was definitely a tumultuous period of time. Things were all over the place, on a daily basis. Definitely took a bit to calm down! But one of the things we noticed was that certain clients with whom we’d been working for almost a year, who had been hit by Penguin, recovered.
With these certain clients, we know for a fact that Panda was not an issue. They could afford to pay for good content. They created videos, etc. They were originally under a manual penalty, but that had been resolved. But Penguin had still been an issue. We continued link building for the greater portion of the past year, after we extinguished all the possible links we could remove.
Fascinatingly enough, Panda 4.0 comes out – their rankings shoot up. They go up big. Back to pre-penalty levels.
This leads me to just a few conclusions.
1. Penguin refresh DID happen same time as Panda 4.0
2. There is a softer version of Penguin built into the base algorithm.
It’s quite possible both options 1 and 2 are likely. After Panda, numerous website owners/black hat SEO’ers, commented on the fact it was quite difficult to rank new websites. It almost felt impossible!
One could speculate that it’s the softer version of Penguin (the same one which got our clients out of the penalty), that is now running, and acting as a barrier to these newer websites.
—This blog post is based almost entirely off our opinions, and some facts that everyone knows. Anyone’s guess is as good as mine.
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