SEO Blog

Google Penguin Update – SEO Will Never be the Same

What a couple weeks in the world of SEO and especially link building. Sure everyone’s heard about the massive Google Penguin updates, don’t have too much time to give my full insights (I don’t get paid to blog after all!), but here’s a copy of an email I sent out to all my clients this past week:

Dear Mr/Mrs Client,

Not sure if you’ve heard, but there was a MASSIVE change to Google’s organic ranking algorithm that was rolled out last week. It has dramatically changed the SEO/link building landscape for the forseeable future and many sites were impacted by these changes.

Thankfully, your site came through with flying colours.. but this doesn’t mean we don’t have to be proactive and adapt to the changes.

I’ve spent a considerable amount of time reading/researching/talking to other colleagues in the industry and comparing notes across the different clients/personal websites we run to share some insider tips on what happened, why it happened, (and most importantly) WHAT WE ARE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT MOVING FORWARD.

Just to fill you in, the update was called the “Google Penguin update” and I’ve attached 5 of the best articles I’ve read that explain the updates in more detail and also include tips on how to be successful in the new SEO/link building world:

http://searchengineland.com/penguin-update-recovery-tips-advice-119650

http://searchengineland.com/impacted-by-googles-panda-update-google-asks-you-to-consider-this-76050

http://searchengineland.com/yet-more-tips-for-diagnosing-fixing-panda-problems-92082

http://www.webpronews.com/google-penguin-update-12-tips-directly-from-google-2012-04

http://www.micrositemasters.com/blog/penguin-analysis-seo-isnt-dead-but-you-need-to-act-smarter-and-5-easy-ways-to-do-so/

To summarize:

The Penguin update was all about trying to eliminate web spam and questionable link building/link scheme tactics in an effort to “clean up the web”. In my honest opinion it was extremely harsh as many legitimate webmasters were pulled in and have suffered as a result. Google was really trying to eliminate all artificial link building tactics, penalize sites for over optimization (stuffing keywords for example), and derank sites that engaged in heavy anchor text link building as well as all the “affiliate-marketing”/Made-for-AdSense thin websites that would often appear for “how-to” “tips-on” type queries. I would expect some further updates to the algorithm over the next few weeks as Google continues to make minor adjustments to compensate.

Google is trying to make the point clear, that if you want to succeed online you have to have a great, user friendly site with GREAT content. The old SEO phrase “content is king” is now even more true than ever before. It’s all about having a SOCIALLY ENGAGING website to be a major player on the search engines.

Google is now paying more attention than ever before to site engagement metrics, including:

– Time on site
– Number of pages visited
– Bounce rates
– Click through rates

Things to Keep in Mind/Next Steps

– Think about how you can add more relevant content to your site (I suggest adding a blog for ALL my clients immediately and reviewing all on-page content as well)

– Think about making web design improvements or changes to your site where possible

– Don’t be fearful! Embrace the new changes Google is rolling out. Be rest assured you have hired one of the top link builders and SEO professionals out there who will help guide you these changes

I have a lot more insights in terms of what specific link building strategies work and how to execute on them, as well as why certain sites got penalized while others improved dramatically, but unfortunately I keep those insights to myself 🙂

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