Who wouldn’t like Google updates?
If you have become too much dubbed into SEO, then you probably already know that these updates may be due to some serious nail biting.
This is usually something like this: Google announced that they had made an update to their algorithm and they provide some complete details. There is a few weeks of chaos and turmoil in the search rankings.
Then, as the dust begins to freeze, we SEO professionals end up reaching for one of two things: champagne or whiskey.
Fortunately, Penguin 4.0 was an update that improves the Google experience for both searchers and search marketing professionals alike. This is also the last “public” update Google will make for the Penguin algorithm.
But to understand it more, let us cover a little history?
What is a penguin anyway?
For people just stepping into the SEO space, a little background is in order.
Penguin is a typical Google algorithm. Google actually has several algorithms. Each is dedicated to achieving a specific goal in its overall plan to improve the web for searchers.
Penguin was specifically aimed at catching sites that bought or obtained spam links.
But some companies decide to focus on quantity rather than quality.
Spoiler Alert: It does not play so well with Google (or search engine users themselves).
Penguin penalizes sites that build low-quality or unsolicited links by devaluing those sites that those crummy links pointed to.
If you Google yourself a fine due to Penguin, you were in for a tough ride. Getting those punishments was a very difficult task, and took a lot of time.
Search matrix chart
In fact, site-owners needed to wait for the next “Penguin update” to rollout, so that their fines could be removed. Originally, any work you did to reverse a penalty would be intermittently controlled by Google.
But until the Penguin update rolls out, you won’t see that penalty overturned or start showing your site again in SERPs (search engine result page).
What did this mean for SEO?
Well, some things. But mostly, it taught SEO firms to be careful about what kind of link-building activities they are engaged in.
The explorers who discovered us already knew to pay attention to quality, but it really brought the hammer to the corner-cutters.
First and foremost, these updates were usually done slowly and deliberately. When it comes to the pricing / devaluation link, there is a lot of volatility to consider.
This is not a pleasant topic, but negative SEO attacks became a general point of discussion after the first release of Penguin.
There is also a reason for this. If crummy links can cause a site to exit the SERPs, then what is to prevent the competing SEOs from creating a bunch of spam links on your site?
Negative seo attack
Google wants to convince you that these attacks will not happen, but I expect you to challenge that notion. It is clearly in their best interests to claim these events to be very rare. To be fair, they are rare, but worth noting.
Do a little digging and you will find many cases where sites and businesses are at the end of negative SEO campaigns. You will also find that Google has gradually modified its statements from “it is impossible to happen” to “it is highly likely that it will not happen”.
Despite the negative SEO angle, the Penguin update has been disproportionately for the best. Nobody likes spam. No one likes irrelevant sites to fall into the top ranks due to search engine manipulation.
In addition, the subsequent introduction of the Google Discove tool has served to empower site owners to reduce the risk and damage of negative SEO attacks (or their own clumsy link-building).
What changed with Penguin 4.0?
Penguin 4.0 brought many changes, and the boys welcome them.
The most important of these changes has been described by Google itself.
That’s right, penguin data has now been analyzed in real time. So if you make a mistake and create some low-quality links, you will be able to see the result of this action quickly.
Also, and more importantly, if you remove those links and proceed responsibly, your site will recover quickly. No more waiting two years for Penguin to refresh to bring your site back to the SERPs!
Secondly, instead of bad links damaging the search visibility of the entire site, they now typically only affect the pages they are pointing to.