What You Need To Know About Penguin 2.0

If there’s one thing that gets everyone’s blood boiling, it’s the amount of spam results search engines bring up. It can be a real time suck having to weed through numerous links, before finding a credible source on the topic you’re searching for.

Luckily Google‘s anticipated update to its search algorithm rolled out last week. With Penguin 2.0, Google expects this update to tackle web spam and show you search results that meet their quality guidelines.

What is the Penguin Update?

The first of the Penguin updates came out in April 2012 and started Google’s efforts to decrease the page rank of websites using so-called black-hat SEO techniques. Which include keyword stuffing, duplication of content, link schemes and cloaking.

According to Google’s head of search spam Matt Cutts,

“Penguin is a web spam change that’s dedicated to try to find black hat web spam, and try to target and address that. So this one is a little more comprehensive than Penguin 1.0. And we expect it to go a little deeper and have a little bit more of an impact than the original version of Penguin.”

What this means is that Google is really pushing forward with its efforts to help people find relevant content. And punish those who are engaged in unethical SEO practices.

Why Penguin Matters?

While most of the focus has been on identifying black hat web spam, and fishing out worthless websites. It’s worth remembering that Google is not merely on a witch hunt. Depending on how you look at it, Google actually wants to reward high-quality sites.

So if you want to start ranking highly on Google – your focus needs to be on publishing content that is:

  • Well researched
  • Highly valuable to readers
  • Authoritative
  • Credible
  • Well structured

For more information on what Google means by “high quality” check out this post over at the Google Webmaster’s Blog: More guidance on building high-quality sites

What You Need To Do?

Since the update rolled out last week, people have been reporting a dip in their rankings. In a post over at Search Engine Journal, Jayson DeMers talks about some of the emails he’s received from nervous clients concerning Google’s latest algorithm update.

His post “Penguin 2.0: Your Roadmap to Recovery” outlines four suggestions on how to cope with the latest changes.

Along with following DeMers’ advice, here are some extra tips to make your website more trustworthy in Google’s eyes:

  • Publish a minimum of 300 words per page
  • Update your website regularly
  • Vigorously proofread your content
  • Publish unique content
  • Make your website a UI powerhouse
  • Get rid of duplicate content
  • Write naturally for the humans

Remember it’s still early days with Penguin 2.0 and it’s unclear what the overall impact will be on search results. Matt Cutts released a video talking about what to expect in terms of SEO for Google.

The video summarizes 10 key areas the latest Penguin update addresses, for more information check out: What should we expect in the next few months in terms of SEO for Google?

What about you? Have you noticed a change in your page rankings? Let us know in the comments section below.

Image by Aztlek

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