Matt Cutts, head of the web spam team at Google, announced through Twitter this week (10th May 2013) the the next generation of Penguin, Penguin 2.0, is to be released in the following weeks. Providing somewhat of a disclaimer and additional information on the update via Youtube, Cutts stated that the exact date of the launch remains undetermined and to take the information ‘with a pinch of salt’ at this time.
Many online marketers who have been following updates, have not been rolling out a welcome mat for the proposed plans. A company and their Google page rank could fall substantially almost overnight when the unknown algorithm is applied. This will have a negative effect on income levels for some businesses, putting many at the mercy of Google. Despite this, Penguin is giving some companies a boost in page rank as a result of the newly adapted filters. It is therefore important to stay up to date with Google updates to ensure the correct procedures are in place to avoid this.
Penguin 2.0 has been anticipated by many due to faults in the original algorithm, which was clear, even to the most inexperienced of users. Despite this, it is impossible for us to gain a clear understanding around how Penguin operates as the information is never released by Google and can only be speculated among web masters.
Initially, we can agree that black hat tactics are going to be confronted by stronger and more efficient procedures in attempts to tackle those that do not comply with web master guidelines. Those using guest blogs to build up a site should also take caution. It has been suggested that Google could be clamping down on blogs that do not have unique content and are written in an advertorial way in relation to the included link, especially key word links that hold high value.
Those that currently comply with Google web master guidelines and follow white hat procedures need not worry. It has been mildly suggested, mainly through different interpretations of Matt Cutt’s Youtube announcements, that Google are giving higher page ranks to sites that ‘users love, that want to tell their friends about, bookmark, come back to, visit over and over again’. The repetition he uses of the word bookmark throughout the clip gives a nod to the rise and growing importance in using social media to create credibility and that sought after high page rank. This encourages marketers to engage visitors instead of deceiving them. In the update, we also see that clusters of results derived from the same domain will be reduced until deeper within a Google search.
Although Google may be making some enemies throughout this algorithmic journey, this is a risk that all internet marketers are taking when relying on any kind of SEO for traffic. Google does not have a responsibility to us, we have a responsibility to ourselves and our clients to take the necessary steps to stay ahead in an ever-changing marketing climate in which our success is not solely decided by ourselves.