On Oct 17, 2014, Google announced that it has rolled out the Penguin 3.0 update. Immediately the online marketing industry went into a tizzy trying to figure out how their websites measured up against this new update. The problem with updating software is that the programmers are aware of what has been modified in the latest version but the people at large are unaware of it. They immediately start making fervent guesses to get to the core of it. In the process, the rumor mills begin to churn and throw up tons of misinformation. In this blog, we will take an honest look at what effect the Penguin 3.0 update had on the internet marketing industry.
Was Penguin 3.0 actually Small?
The updates of Google’s giant killers like the Penguin and the Panda are always very celebrated and much hyped. As a result, when the updates do not stack up well against the expectations, they are considered to be small and below par! That is exactly what has happened with Penguin 3.0, if you listen to the experts. This update was all the more hyped because it came after about an year. Every internet marketer was waiting for major upheavals on search algorithms and related domains.
What happened was almost an anti-climax! Pundits reports that with the Penguin 3.0 update, only 1% of US English queries were affected, as opposed to 3.1% when Penguin 1.0 rolled out. According to Pierre Far, the Penguin 3.0 was about ‘data refresh’ and not about algorithmic changes. Also, Penguin 3.0 was slated to be a slow, worldwide rollout. There is, of course, a logical explanation to why major updates are always rolled out over a longer period. Glitches and bugs can be fixed along the way.
Here are some salient features of the Penguin 3.0 update:
Websites penalized by Penguin in the past were not revived through the update. Experts feel that Google is testing the waters with the update before taking any drastic step.
In a desperate attempt to get into the good books of Google, many websites cleaned up their back-links. In their gusto, many of them threw the baby out with the bath water! In other words, some valuable back-links got trashed in the process.
This was anything but a epoch-making event in the world of updates!
How you Lose to Penguin 3.0
The question that must always bubble under the surface after every Google update is: how do I end up losing this battle? The usual rules apply in the case of Penguin 3.0 update as well. Take a quick check on these points and find out how your website holds up in these departments:
Duplicity in the purchase or sale of web links is a strict no-no. How many times have you heard that before? This rule still stands tall.
Content farming and content churning, even if they have a semblance of quality, will take you to the loser’s corner! Articles, blogs or press releases cannot be your link-earning methods.
Use of underhand means to trade in web links or content is still a grave offense. Play the game by the rules or get evicted from the arena is Google’s motto.
The Future Game Plan
Let’s look to the future now. What happens to websites and the internet marketing industry in this Penguin 3.0 times? I have heard so many people say that Penguin 3.0 is like hitting the refresh button rather than a full-fledged update as it seemed to be. The industry is looking to more such refresh buttons to be hit in the near future. The clamor is to get these updates to fight and nullify negative SEO. Some feel that this aspect was pretty much left alone in this update.
We’ll keep you posted on this. I’m sure we have not heard the last from Penguin 3.0!