Last month, Google’s Matt Cutts revealed that the Penguin update (Penguin 4) will be rolled out later this year, with hopes that it may be a little earlier than they first planned – and word on the Google grapevine is that Penguin number 4 is going to be a big one.
During a live blogging session with Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Round Table for the SMX West Search Marketing Expo in San Jose, California, Google’s Head of Webspam Matt Cutts revealed that Penguin’s next update would be coming soon in 2013, with no real indication of when. But many rumours have sparked since, with SEO experts expecting algorithm updates imminently.
Cutts, the Head of Webspam at Google discussed various spam problems that they are continuing to tackle and these included doorway pages, auto generated content, keyword stuffing, poorly written content, hacking, paid links, blog comment spamming, cloaking and other problem areas that they spam team will be looking at in 2013.
Other than discussing these issues, there was no date released for the next Penguin update. But we do know that Penguin 4 is set to be a big update and could affect a lot of online businesses.
How to Prepare for the Next Penguin Update
Although we are yet to receive further information on when or how this will roll out, we do have some learnings about the nature of Penguin and how it works. Here are some tips on how to survive the next Penguin update.
- Choose relevant keywords – the best advice for surviving Penguin’s algo update is to avoid being spammy at all times. Choose relevant keywords to your business and your product offerings and avoid optimizing for services you do not offer.
- Remove over optimized keywords – keyword stuffing is a big problem for Penguin so make sure you analyse keyword density of each page. Keyword density can be reviewed using word clouds or density calculators (many free tools are available online).
- Sign up for online SEO tools – there are so many free SEO tools available online (either to use on site or for a free download to your browser / desktop).
- Sign up for SEO blogs – for the most up to date information on Google’s algorithm changes, the online blogging world should be your first post of call. Read blog sites such as SEO Round Table, SEOMoz, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal and of course Matt Cutt’s blog to find out the latest news updates on Penguin or Panda. Sign up for the RSS feeds of these blogs to ensure that you get email notification of every new blog post, including live blogging events such as the one covered by Barry Schwartz for the SMX West Search Marketing Expo.
- Optimize social media – up until recently, social media marketing has been an intangible investment of resource but we now know that social media presence on social networking sites can directly affect website rankings. Make sure you have a complete web presence by managing social pages such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube or Pinterest. The power of co-citation will let Penguin know that your website has presence elsewhere other than your website even without a live link.
About the author:
Amanda Revie writes for Ingenuity Digital, a multilingual SEO and web search specialists. You can follow them on twitter @ingenuitydigi.