Why Google Panda Is More A Ranking Factor Than Algorithm Update

google-panda-generic-featured With Google Panda Update 2.2 upon us, it's worth revisiting what exactly Panda is and isn't. Panda is a new ranking factor. Panda is not an entirely new overall ranking algorithm that's employed by Google. The difference is important for anyone hit by Panda and hoping to recover from it. Google's Ranking Algorithm & Updates Let's start with search engine optimization 101. After search engines collect pages from across the web, they need to sort through them in demand to searches that are done. Which are the best? To decide this, they employ a ranking algorithm. It's like a recipe for coo [...]


Official: Google Panda Update 2.2 Is Live

Google has given us confirmation that they have run an update to the Panda filter recently. We have been expecting the Panda 2.2 update based on news coming out of the SMX Advanced conference. Matt Cutts told SMX attendees that Panda 2.2 has been approved, hasn’t been rolled out yet, but that should happen soon. The update hit sometime late last week. I believe Google manually pushed out the Panda 2.2 update around June 16th. As some of you know, I track the SEO discussion forums very closely and have two posts at the Search Engine Roundtable discussing Webmaster chatter around th [...]


Coming Soon: Google Panda Update 2.2

panda-face-top-news One of the bigger pieces of news -- certainly for webmasters and SEOs -- from our SMX Advanced conference this week is that Google will soon be releasing version 2.2 of the Panda algorithm update. Google's Matt Cutts confirmed that during Tuesday's keynote question-and-answer session with Danny Sullivan. Cutts said that the update has been approved, hasn't been rolled out yet, but that should happen soon. Improved Scraper Detection The next update will target a common webmaster complaint related to the original Panda/Farmer update: sites that scrape and re-publish content and are out-rank [...]


It’s Panda Update 2.1, Not Panda 3.0, Google Says

sad-panda-featured There have been rumblings that Google has unveiled another huge algorithm change being dubbed "Panda 3.0" in some quarters. Officially, Google says it's not so. Only a minor update, "far smaller" than Panda 2, has happened. Changes have been spotted by some sharp-eyed SEOs over the past few days, and Google agrees that there were some tweaks made. But as I said, the company says this impacts far fewer rankings than in the past. Let's recap: Panda 1.0: Launched on February 24, this targeted "shallow" or "thin" content and impacted about 12% of the rankings in the United States. See our [...]


Hit By Panda Update? Google Has 23 Questions To Ask Yourself To Improve

sad-panda-featured Amit Singhal, Google's head of search, published a blog post on the Google Webmaster Central blog named More guidance on building high-quality sites. Amit's goal with this post is to have those webmasters impacted by this Panda Update, which rolled out internationally about a month ago, with some direction and guidance to help explain what sites Google likes and which they dislike. Amit said that he cannot document publicly the "actual ranking signals" but will share questions you should ask yourself and consider when trying to understand why a site was impacted by this update. Those q [...]


Panda 2.0: Google Rolls Out Panda Update Internationally & Incorporates Searcher Blocking Data

panda-international-featured Late February, Google launched a substantial algorithm change (known as "Farmer" or "Panda") aimed at identifying low-quality pages and sites. These are pages (often seen on so-called "content farms") with text that is relevant for a query, but may not provide the best user experience. (Google calls it a "high quality sites algorithm".) Today, Google has rolled this change out to all English language queries and made a few minor updates (with an estimated impact to 2% of U.S. queries). Live for All English Queries The original algorithm update impacted only U.S. queries. As of today, this c [...]


Lessons Learned at SMX West: Google’s Panda Update, White Hat Cloaking & Link Building

An amazing amount of great information came out of SMX West this week. Below is a summary of some of what I found to be the most actionable and useful. Google's Own Words About the Farmer/Panda Update Google's Matt Cutts said that while the change isn't 100% perfect, searcher feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. He noted that the change is completely algorithmic with no manual exceptions. Blocking "Low Quality" Content Matt reiterated that enough low quality content on a site could reduce rankings for that site as a whole. Improving the quality of the pages or removing the pages alto [...]


The Farmer/Panda Update: New Information From Google and The Latest from SMX West

[caption id="attachment_67584" align="alignright" width="240" caption="Image from Sony200boy on Flickr"][/caption] Today at SMX West, the subject of the day was content farms. One session included the founder of (sometimes-called content farm) Associated Content, Luke Beatty, and focused on the good that can be learned from content farms, as well as what sites who have been hit by Google’s Farmer aka Panda update can do to regain their rankings. This discussion coincides with an updated posting from Google in the webmaster discussion forum thread they opened for site owners on the sub [...]


Your Site’s Traffic Has Plummeted Since Google’s Panda Update. Now What?

Google's latest algorithm change has impacted nearly 12% of queries. That means that a lot of sites, big and small, are looking at their web analytics reports this week and seeing devastating traffic graphs down and to the right. It can be difficult to think strategically and objectively in such a a situation and your first reactions may be panic and anger. Understandable, but if you want to restore your site's traffic, you need actionable steps for evaluation and change. Even if it is truly the case that you were unfairly hit as a result of collateral damage, you want to spend your limited [...]


Google Speaks More About The Farmer Update, AKA Panda Update

In an interview with Wired magazine's Steven Levy (who's keynoting at our SMX West conference next week), Googlers Amit Singhal and Matt Cutts speak more about the recent Farmer algorithm update. One of the interesting things they say is that last year's launch of the "Caffeine" indexing infrastructure played a role in upping the visibility of "shallow content." [Amit Singhal speaking] Our index grew so quickly, and we were just crawling at a much faster speed. When that happened, we basically got a lot of good fresh content, and some not so good. The problem had shifted from random gibber [...]


Google: We’ve Made No “Significant” Changes To The Farmer Update

Earlier, we wrote about a Wired article that looked at how the Cult Of Mac web site had regained traffic lost after Google's recent Farmer Update algorithm change. A fix just for Cult Of Mac? A fix to the algorithm? Neither, Google has told Search Engine Land. No Manual Changes Google has told us that it made no manual change to help improve how the Cult Of Mac site is doing, nor is it making any types of manual changes along these lines. There's no "whitelist" that people are being put on, nor is there some type of "blacklist" that the Farmer Update went after. Instead, Google rolled out [...]


Google Forecloses On Content Farms With “Panda” Algorithm Update

In January, Google promised that it would take action against content farms that were gaining top listings with "shallow" or "low-quality" content. Now the company is delivering, announcing a change to its ranking algorithm designed take out such material. New Change Impacts 12% Of US Results The new algorithm -- Google's "recipe" for how to rank web pages -- starting going live yesterday, the company told me in an interview today. Google changes its algorithm on a regular basis, but most changes are so subtle that few notice. This is different. Google says the change impacts 12% (11.8% i [...]


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