In April 2012, Google released some new updates relating specially to Ranking and search engine optimization(SEO). These updates are known as Google penguin. Since the updates are quite new, many people do not yet understand what they are about and they have been asking what is Google Penguin and how will it affect me.
In the past, people have been using different methods to get high rankings in Google. This resulted in saturation with optimized content that provides low quality search results. This also made it difficult for mid-sized and small businesses to compete with large companies that have highly paid optimizers. Google considers some of these methods unfair and they came up with the penguin to try and provide a level playing field for all members.
The penguin are to ensure that people write high quality content on their sites instead of writing content that is purely meant to pass on anchor links. Articles should not be over optimized or stuffed with keywords that may end up making them senseless. Blogs and websites are also not supposed to be thin or have hidden text. Those who do not follow these guidelines may be punished by having their rankings lowered.
The updates also target practices such as deliberately duplicating content across domains in order to win more traffic or manipulate search engine rankings. They will also affect spam sites that violate the quality guidelines Google has set. This algorithm will be able to detect web spam to remove it and also prevent spamming from search results.
Google penguin may affect you in various ways. Firstly, you shall now be expected to create sites that are user friendly rather than engaging in web spam tactics. You will also be expected to produce content that is of high quality. If your site is of high quality, it will receive better ranking.
One is also expected to avoid hidden links or hidden text in blogs. Good keyword density should also be used on the blog in order to write SEO rich posts. You could get penalized for over stuffing your blog with keywords as it is considered unethical. Using of top-level domains is also recommended to enable Google serve the best version of a document.
Your internal linking will also be expected to be consistent. This means you avoid black hat link building techniques as they affect the quality of the website. Black-hat optimization includes sneaky or cloaking redirects, loading pages with irrelevant keywords, sending automated questions to the search engine and domains, sub-domains and multiple pages with duplicate content. These updates mostly target web spam and this means that sites and links that differ from the context on the main page may be penalized.
It is now advisable to avoid publishing stubs as users do not like to come across empty pages. This means that you should not publish pages for which you do not have real content. Understanding the content management system may also be necessary. It is therefore important to ensure that you are familiar with how to display content on your site so that it does not appear in multiple formats.
It also means that any kind of spamming can be punished. This includes visitors who comment on your blog or website using spammed links. This means that you should now take full charge of what is happening around and in your blog or website and remove anyone who is trying to establish spam links on your site. The whole idea is to gain unique backlinks that bring you recognition as an expert in your trade.
There will be a lot of benefits for those who follow the set guidelines. However, there shall be a number of penalties for those who do not follow the guidelines. If your site is of high quality, has great content, has not gone overboard with search engine optimization and keyword density you shall be rewarded with high rankings. Sites with web spam are likely to experience a vertical drop from the search rankings and their organic traffic may also plummet.
For those who have wondered what is Google Penguin and how will it affect me, the answer is that these are updates introduced to try and level the search results playing field. Those who follow the set guidelines will be rewarded with the rankings they deserve. Those who do not follow the guidelines will be penalized in various ways. As a result, many websites and blogs may find their rankings rising or falling due to the new measures that have been implemented.
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