Thanks for joining us again on another installment of the Google Wild Kingdom, where we look at the strange animals responsible for updating the Google search algorithm. In SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, the goal is to coordinate with Google’s sorting equation to get your content ranking high in the search queries. There’s a lot of technical analysis that goes into this but what makes it much more challenging is keeping up with the updates. Google makes adjustments to the algorithms guidelines every few weeks or months and these updates are named for animals. (Don’t ask us, we don’t get it either. It’s cute though, right?)
The next animal on our tour is…
Penguin updates are similar to the Panda changes in that the goal is to reward high quality and popular sites with higher search rankings and to demote or penalize sites that are of a lower quality or relevance. Where Panda focuses on the content on the site, Penguin is more concerned with spammy link-building and other known “black hat” SEO practices.
Penguin puts the slap-down on sites that engage in any of the following no-no’s:
- Mindless keyword stuffing
- Unrelated and irrelevant pages or content
- Link schemes or trickery
- Link spamming or over-optimized anchor text
- Using cloaked or hidden text
- Duplicate or scraped content
- Guest blogging strictly for links
- Comment spam
- Other nefarious schemes involving links pointing to your site
Those penguins, man. They’ll getcha.
If you end up pouting alone in the sandbox with a Penguin penalty from poor linking practices, it’s time to clean up your links. Make sure you have a variety of anchor texts coming into your site and that the links are coming from relevant and reputable sources. A bunch of porn sites linking to a site that sells homemade basket crafts is a big red flag for the Penguin army and oh, will they swarm.
Cut ties with shady links as fast as possible and if necessary, disavow them by asking Google to ignore that particular stain on your structure. When things are starting to look all cleaned up, you have to send a reconsideration request to the big G. It’s kind of like a “let’s get back together” dinner date where Google plays the offended lover and holds your fate in its hand. Brace yourself. If you’ve done your job to clean up the shadiness, things should be fine.
Just don’t offend Google’s penguins again; A penguin never forgets!
Or is that a different animal?
We just do (incredible) marketing.