The purpose of Penguin, a filter that sits on top of Google’s regular algorithm, is to reduce search engine rankings that violate Google’s ranking guidelines. The current update, introduced in October 2014, is Penguin 3.0, affecting less than one percent of search engine queries. While Google describes this update as a “refresh with no new signals added,” it’s still important to understand the guidelines if you want to get the most out of your SEO efforts.
The War on Link Spam Continues
The main purpose of Penguin is to catch and flag so-called link spam while cutting down on deceptive and/or manipulative practices incorporated into the design of a website to achieve an artificially inflated Google ranking. The Penguin 3.0 updates (really the 6th version) are designed to demote sites implementing bad practice “black hat SEO” linking techniques, including:
• Creating one page for the “bots” and another for human users, known as “cloaking”
• Purposely overusing “hot button keywords” and creating a link based on those words
• Excessive use of exact-match keywords in links
• Executing link schemes, such as buying and selling links and excessive link exchanges (“you link me, I’ll link you”)
• Excessive internal linking
Keep in mind that Penguin updates only impact links to a site, not the content of websites. The primary goal of the Penguin guidelines is to encourage website developers and designers to use multiple link-building techniques rather than simply relying on those methods solely designed to entice clicks. While Google won’t reveal exactly how much weight is given to each ranking factor, it’s no secret that there has been an increased focus on the quality and authenticity of links.
If you’re concerned about how your business is faring after the recent Penguin 3.0 changes, contact Saba SEO at (858) 277.1717. Our dedicated team of web designers, content writers, and marketing experts are fully prepared to make sure all of our clients thrive after every new update.