How to react to Google’s latest algorithm updates

In the last 8 days, Google has released two remarkable algorithm updates. The first update was the Panda 3.5 update on 19 April, the second update was the the so-called ‘Penguin’ update on 24 April.

If your rankings dropped, you have to adjust your pages depending on the update that caused the ranking drop for you.

1. What to do if your site was affected by the Penguin update

The Penguin update was meant to target spam. It is probably the ‘over optimization update’ that Google announced some time ago.

Check your website statistics to find out if your site was hit by the Penguin update. If you see a major drop in your traffic from Google after 24 April, the Penguin update might affect your site. So far, Google does not report Penguin spamming offenses through Google Webmaster Tools.

If your website was hit by the Penguin update, you have to remove any spam you might have on your site. Check everything on your site that might be interpreted as spam: keyword stuffing, redirects, cloaking, etc.

If you think that your website was flagged by mistake, you can inform Google through this form.

2. What to do if your site was affected by the Panda 3.5 update

Google’s Panda update targets low quality web pages. If your web pages don’t have much content, or if your pages are made for AdSense, changes are that Google doesn’t want to show them in the search results.

In that case, you have to improve the quality of your web pages. Google published the following questions that help Google to judge if a website is a quality site:

  • Would you trust the information presented in this article?
  • Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow in nature?
  • Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?
  • Would you be comfortable giving your credit card information to this site?
  • Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?
  • Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?
  • Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
  • Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
  • How much quality control is done on content?
  • Does the article describe both sides of a story?
  • Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
  • Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?
  • Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
  • For a health related query, would you trust information from this site?
  • Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?
  • Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
  • Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?
  • Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?
  • Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
  • Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopedia or book?
  • Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?
  • Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?
  • Would users complain when they see pages from this site?

Find the most important and most valuable URLs on your website and make sure that these are well optimized. Remove low quality URLs from the index and try to get backlinks from high quality sites to your most important pages.

How to become independent from Google’s updates

In general, Google’s recent updates only affected people who tried to game Google’s algorithm. If you create high quality websites that you don’t have to worry about Google’s updates.

That’s the reason why we’ve always recommended white-hat SEO methods. If you use the tools in SEOprofiler to promote your web pages, you are on the safe side.

SEOprofiler only uses SEO methods that are beneficial to web searchers, businesses and search engines. These methods lead to lasting results.

If you haven’t done it yet, create a free SEOprofiler account now:

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Johannes Selbach

Johannes Selbach is the CEO of SEOprofiler. He blogs about search engine optimization and website marketing topics at "http://blog.seoprofiler.com".

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