Filter Empowered to Fight Spam
In mid-2012, Google introduced the Penguin update to uncover websites that were not following the search engine’s strict guidelines regarding link spamming. Those sites that were benefiting until then by buying links or by leveraging link networks whose sole purpose was to boost page rankings suffered the most from this update. Now, Google has come out with a brand new update to its Penguin filter that is being called Penguin 3.0 by webmasters and this update is aimed at fighting spam even more effectively, say sources from Google.
Slow worldwide roll out for 3.0
The effects of the new and improved Penguin 3.0 may not be apparent to all instantly since the version was rolled- out slowly. In the words of Pierre Far from Google, the process was spread over a ‘few weeks’ until completion. Given that Penguin is a worldwide filter and that it focuses on the links rather than the content of the sites, it is also possible that certain geographical locations find that their sites do not show any marked improvement in terms of better click through rate right away.
Only a refresh, no new signals
Google also indicated that the present update is just a refresh and no new signals have been included to the algorithm this time. A refresh could mean that the algorithm has just been rerun once again to incorporate the actions of sites that responded adequately to previous Penguin hits and corrected their bad links. In effect, webmasters who eliminated bad links could witness a marked surge in ranking while sites that failed to pick up on problems even after Penguin hits could face further demotion in terms of ranking. Irrespective of the degree of change that the update involves, Google has ensured that webmasters will start taking serious note of their link quality and amp up the efforts to curb spammy links in their sites.
A year long wait between updates
The recent update in October comes after slightly more than a year has passed since the last one in early October 2012. Experts and publishers are wondering why this long delay has taken place and the queries are piling up especially since Google denies that any significant changes have been carried out. Expectations that Google would bring out a refresh much earlier in the year and start paving the way for a brand new algorithm have been doing the rounds for quite a while now, only to be proven wrong with this update.
‘Designed to be precise’
Matt Cutts, who heads the spam team at Google has some interesting perspectives to share about Penguin 3.0, as it has been termed in the marketplace. Cutts describes the update as a success although there have been reports of ‘weird’ results from several people. A case in point is the official Viagra website that failed to get a listing although hacked websites did. Cutts explained these away by saying that these issues existed even before the updated Penguin was released. However, he also acknowledged that ‘no algorithm is perfect’ and while Penguin has been designed for precision in terms of targeting only those sites that have the greatest likelihood of spamming, a few false positives may still get through. The objective is to keep these false positives as minimal as possible, he explains.
The recent updates to Panda have also added to the complexity of the whole situation leaving webmasters and publishers in a bit of a tizzy. If you find yourself in a similar position, call Bryant Consultants today. We will help you make sense of Google’s search algorithms and improve your page rankings without falling out of grace with Google.