What is Google Penguin Update & How to Recover from this Update
Having more than 60% of search engine market share, Google seems to be the most imperative platform in the digital world. Since Google has been a favorite search engine for millions of online searchers, every year it comes with different updates to provide better user experience.
Most of the time, when the updates are launched, many witness a fall in their website ranking. But, it does not mean that updates are released for creating only negative impacts. If we look at the other side, it seems that these changes are improving the quality of the searches by removing those websites that do not meet the criteria set by Google.
Till now, this giant search engine has launched numerous updates with different versions, including Panda, Penguin, Humming Bird, MobileGeddon, etc; all these are meant for producing quality result through diverse smart approaches.
An Abridgment of Penguin Update
Google Penguin is the one of most effective and imperative updates that brought around 3.1% change in english-centric search query. It was programmed to tackle with the website that are using keyword stuffing and spamming approach.
In April 2012, Penguin made a first entry to penalize those sites that follow different spamming techniques in order to gain top position in search result. With the first entry, it brought 3.0% tweak in the query. After then, in 2013, two versions of this update that are 2.0 and 2.1 in May and October respectively were launched. These algorithms feature improved functionality and catered total change of 3.3% in the search query. And the last as well as the latest version of this algorithm is Penguin 3.0, which was released in October 2014. It brought around 1.0% tweak.
This algorithm was programmed to target those websites that are deemed to be spammed with irrelevant backlink, keyword stuffing and other techniques.
How to Recover from Adverse Effect of Update?
Identify Whether Your Site is Hit or Not
Before going to plan a new strategy to recover from adverse effects of updated algorithm, it is very imperative to find out that which update has brought down ranking of web pages in the search result. For this, it is better to analyze search-oriented web traffic after the 2-3 days, when a particular update is launched. If there is a steep fall in the ranking, then this means that the website is hit by that specific algorithm.
In case of finding, whether your website is hit by Penguin, you can check your ranking after different date of releases, including 22nd April 2012, 22nd May 2013, 4th October 2013 and 17th October 2014. If you witness a huge fall in ranking, then this means that your website has been hit by Penguin.
You can also take the help of penalty checker tool like Fruitation.net. This tool with the help of superb interface provides web traffic corresponding to different updates by Google in the form of graphical view. In this way, you can find whether your website rank experienced maximum drop during penguin update or not. If the answer is yes, then there is a maximum probability for respective site to be hit by Penguin.
Explore Reasons for Why Your Site is Targeted
There can be a slew of factors that lead the web page to be targeted by Penguin update; if you find the factor which specifically affects the rank, then all your efforts to regain same or previous place in search result will automatically half. Let’s have a glimpse over the array of factors:
1. Anchor text over optimization
In other words, it can be called as overuse of anchor text. This looks spammy to this algorithm and hence, it decreases the rank of the website.
2. Low quality backlinks
Poor quality backlinks can also be cause for your website to be hit by the update.
3. Improper Link
Irrelevant backlink or the link that is associated with the different subjects (that do not match your website) can also become a reason behind getting targeted.
4. High Keyword Density
Huge keyword density and use of same keyword multiple times in a single content can also define your website under spam category.
5. Bad Quality Of Outbound link
Implementing the bad quality outbound link can also land your website to lower rank.
6. Link pyramid
Building link pyramid is an effective link building strategy. But sometimes, while developing link pyramid, many link builders compromise with the quality of backlink that entices the algorithm to pull down the position.
7. Hidden links & texts
This is unethical SEO practice that causes spam and result in depleting rank.
8. Implementing Duplicate Content In Sub-Domain
It is also a black hat SEO practice that creates redundancy.
9. Website with Affiliating Content
The website that is overly doing affiliate marketing and does not possess any valuable content can be hit by the update.
10. Relying automated queries to Google
Any site that sends the automated queries to Google without their permission will be considered in the penality list.
11. Infected Website
The web page that seems to be infected by virus or which is distributing malware is considered as a violater of Google’s quality criteria.
12. Over Optimized With SEO techniques
Sometimes SEO professionals deploy over optimization technique in the web content that also reflect business in a bad light.
13. Deploying any other black hat SEO
Using any type of black hat or unethical SEO technique will also become pretext for Penguin to attack the site.
Prepare A List of All Backlinks
Your first step towards recovery from update is to create a list of all the backlinks that are associated with the concerned site. There are various backlink analysis tools that can not only help you find out the backlink, but also generate the list of the the links.
It is recommended that you should consider at least three or four tools to create a list of relevant backlinks of considered website.
Evaluate Quality of the Backlinks & Other Links
Now you have to assess the quality of all the links, whether it is backlink, outbound link or inbound link. Here quality means the features of website or web page of which the link is mentioned on your website or from where the link is redirecting to your website. The bad quality websites are those that are:
1. Non-indexed at search engine
2. Possess irrelevant and non -trusting content
3. Have low ranking
4. Feature black hat SEO attribute
5. Deployed with low-quality content
6. Backed by malicious code
If any of the above flaws, a web page possesses, then without having any second thought, you have to just shift their links in the blacklist. In our previous blog Top 10 Backlink Analysis Tools To check your competitor back-link, we outline the list of best back-link analysis tools for webmaster.
Remove & Disavow Links in Blacklist
After having all the links in the blacklist sheet, now remove those links. For disavowing backlinks, you can take the help of Google Disavow Tool as this will assist you to clear away all backlinks and save valuable time. It is easy to use as you just need to follow the simple instructions that are given on the Google support website .
Most Important Things that you should Remember
There are various thing that should be remembered in terms of keeping the website secure against different updates, such as
Do Not Overly Optimize Anchor Text
Avoid indulging in the activity of distributing the anchor text as this will make your website as a target of Penguin. Moreover, you should take care that density of anchor text is not higher, just like keyword stuffing. It is better if you adopt the following status:
1. Make sure that around 13% of anchor text should include keyword
2. About 12% of anchor text in backlink should exactly match the name of website (to which backlink is redirecting)
3. Around 25% should be used to include the URL of your own website
4. About 15% can be implemented with random texts
5. Only 17% anchored texts should comprise the brand name
6. Keyword and and other words should be implemented in left over anchored text.
Explore Keyword density & Avoid Stuffing Them
Evaluate the keyword density of your website with the help of different tools like Livekeywordanalysis , SEO Chat Keyword Density Analysis, SEOCentro and many others. And then, limit the frequency of keyword to maximum 1.5%. If it seems difficult for you, then you can consider using Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) approach.
Keep distance from keyword stuffing or any approach that is associated with this kind of technique, such as placing hidden test or link and automated SEO tool.
Develop Content by Keeping Focus on the Readers
For every website owner, it is important to create the content that is user-centric, not a search-engine-oriented because the user-oriented content will definitely be helpful in terms of improving the rank of any web page. Thus, be considerate about respective readers’ interest. Additionally, take care of grammar and language usage in your content; it should be easy-to-understand for your audience.
Create Relevant Backlink
Most of the bloggers and link builders have habit of creating quick backlink by posting their blog post on any platform, even it does not feature any aspect related to their blog post; this is not good. Indeed, this approach will prove to be dangerous for business reputation and may curb the spectrum of the potential audience of the business. In our previous blog “5 Steps to Build Quality Link that Boost Business Online” we have mentioned tips and tricks for creating quality backlinks.
Use Social Media
At present, social media has become the most vibrant platform where millions of people from different demographics daily share their views, post, images and video. Even Google official has stated a clue that their search engine will give the content a nod for higher rank, which has got maximum “+1”, like or share.
Never Support SEO Automation
Google disregards such websites first that seem to be sending any irrelevant automated query as this hinders the functionality of the search engine. Google has even declared the same in their terms & condition. So, if any website owner or a webmaster, who is using any software or tool in their website that transmits SEO query automatically should disable this.
It is not easy to reinstate the same rank in minimum time when a website gets hit. Thus, it is better to be careful and keep yourself far from bad SEO practices. Moreover, never lose patience while optimizing the website because achieving the best result with qualitative approach is need of the hour. Secondly, the success can not be gained through shortcuts.