Google Penguin 4.0 And What You Need To Know
This week Gary Illyes, a webmaster analyst that works with Google, released some information via twitter on the new Google Penguin update. He mentioned that we could expect to see the new Penguin update be released this year. And this is great news for SEO practitioners and digital marketers that are doing things the “right way”. But for the black-hat folks out there, this news will most likely send a chill up their spine.
A person prepares to search the internet using the Google search engine, on May 14, 2014, in Lille. In a surprise ruling on May 13, the EU’s top court said individuals have the right to ask US Internet giant Google to delete personal data produced by its ubiquitous search engine.
What Is The Google Penguin Update?
The Penguin Update was designed to battle spam link tactics and monitor the quality of links to a website. The update was originally released back in April of 2012 and it immediately caused major ripples in the digital industry. Sites who weren’t playing by the rules were suddenly missing from search results, many of them receiving manual actions.
Later updates were released over the past few years, and every time Penguin is released there are significant changes to the way the search results look. But for the most part it’s a positive update for websites that are doing marketing the proper way and a major detractor for those trying to cheat the system.
What’s Different With Penguin 4.0?
Penguin 4.0 is rumored to be a real-time update to the algorithm. This means that the Penguin portion of the algorithm will always be “on” and updating. This is huge news for the digital marketing community since there’s still a prevalence of spammy tactics taking place. In fact, even though Google claims that black-hat tactics do not work, there’s lots of evidence that the contrary is true. But in Google’s defense, they are making it much more difficult for black-hat marketers to succeed.
With Penguin going real-time the algorithm will now catch spam link profiles more quickly and help keep sites from ranking well in SEO that really have no business ranking in the Google search results.
Will There Be Future Penguin Updates?
Because the update is becoming a real-time part of the algorithm, there probably won’t be publicly announced updates like Penguin, Peguin 2.0, and Penguin 3.0, but rather they will be making constant updates to the algorithm, much like Google is currently doing with their Panda update. This means that the algorithm will become smarter and at a quicker pace than before since Google will be able to roll out changes as needed as opposed to scheduling one massive update.
What Do You Need To Do?
If you haven’t been keeping an eye on your link profile, then you’ve already been doing something wrong. But it’s not too late to fix that problem. You’ll want to move quickly to get your link profile in order and use the tools at your disposal to clean it up.
One of the best ways to optimize your link profile is to have an educated SEO consultant analyze it and make recommendations on what should be removed or disavowed from the profile. Google provides a way to alert them of links you don’t trust that are coming to your site with their Disavow Tool.
Websites are also able to contact the source of the links through their webmaster and can ask them to remove or classify links as nofollow. Some webmasters will be accommodating, but in my experience the vast majority of them do not respond quickly or at all.
And you need to get to work immediately on this. Google is notorious for not giving any actual warning when their updates are rolling out. They’ll provide vague time frames, as Gary Illyes did this week, but that’s usually the extent of their generosity on the matter.
If you have any questions on the matter, feel free to reach out to me or ask in the comments section and I’ll be happy to answer what I can.