How Does Penguin Affect Your Business?

According to RustyBrick CEO and SEO expert, Barry Scwartz, 94% of websites hit did not recover from the Penguin updates of 2012. If you’re in the same boat then you may need to consider taking some serious action in improving your website to adapt to the new Penguin algorithm.

Has your business been affected by the Penguin update? What exactly is Penguin and how can you kick start your recovery? Read on to find out more on best practice SEO.

Basics: What is the Penguin Update?

Penguin is Google’s link based algorithm which acts as a filter for web spam. Whilst Panda was focused on rewarding quality content and penalising poor quality web pages, Penguin is much more spam driven.

So who’s in trouble? These are just a few indicators which set off alarm bells with Penguin:

  • Sites that are over optimised (on site and off site)
  • Web pages with keyword stuffing
  • Websites with an unnatural link profile
  • Over optimisation on keyword anchor text

The above are seen as ways to manipulate rankings in your favour so if you want to avoid being penalised, it’s important to consider SEO practices which can adapt to the recent algorithm changes.

How Has the Penguin Update Affected Other Businesses?

From an online poll conducted in June 2012, 65% of the 1,000 responses received, claimed that they had been negatively impacted by the Penguin algorithm. A later poll created by Barry Schwartz shows us that 94% of the 65% affected, have still not recovered [as of Jan 2, 2013].

The same people were also asked whether they had recovered. Needless to say, there were very few responses – only 6% revealed that they had fully recovered and 13% said they had partially recovered. See the full report here.

How Can You Adapt to the Penguin Update?

The first thing you need to do is identify where the problem lies. If you have been penalised by Penguin, it’s likely that you have keyword stuffing or over optimisation for your site – remember, this can be on site or off site SEO. This is the part where you have to separate the wheat from the chaff and find out exactly what’s been bringing your SEO down.  Gather a list of your website’s inbound links using tools such as Majestic SEO or Open Site Explorer and determine which of these links are poisoning your website with over optimisation.

Anything keyword anchors with over 2% ratio should be looked at carefully and reduced. To recover from the update, it’s important to replace all bad quality links with good quality links. Remember, Penguin is focused on targeting web spam so over optimised sites will be penalised.

In addition to this, check your keywords list for keyword stuffing. Are you over optimising your site on certain phrases? The only way to recover from Penguin is to have a considered contingency plan to tackle keyword reorganisation for your site.

Has this been useful? For more insights on SEO and the latest Google updates, please visit our blog over at WebMarketing Group.


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