No, Google Hasn’t Released Unannounced Penguin Updates
Confusion Over Penguin Refreshes
In a recent Google Webmaster Hangout with Google’s John Mueller, one person asked John about these updates. John replied in a manner that may be interpreted as Penguin is updated on a more regular cycle but not always announced. You can listen to what he said starting at about 4 minutes in the video:
Google: Penguin Algorithm Is Not Refreshed Regularly
When I asked, Google said John was referring to general “link analysis” refreshes but not the Penguin algorithm. In fact, Google confirmed that there have been no Penguin updates since the last confirmed one 4.5 months ago. Google also told us that they do not do regular updates to the Penguin algorithm, like they do with the Panda algorithm.
Panda Algorithm Is Refreshed Monthly
As you know, the Panda Update algorithm is mostly on a monthly basis now and we should be getting a Panda refresh within the next couple days (the last, Panda 24, happened about a month ago). Google has not yet confirmed a Panda update for this month but some are seeing signs of a possible Panda update hitting.
History Of Penguin Updates
Here’s the list so far, showing when each Penguin update came out, the percentage of English-languages queries it was said to impact (other languages are also impacted, but we’re using English as a consistent baseline):
- Penguin 1: April 24, 2012 (3.1%)
- Penguin 2: May 26, 2012 (less than 0.1%)
- Penguin 3: Oct. 5, 2012 (0.3%)