On April 24th, Google launched the Penguin update to their algorithm that reduced traffic to a significant number of sites. Here are some great resources for learning more about Google Penguin.
Key takeaways: Export link data from Open Site Explorer to identify overused anchor text links. Penguin seems to be a keyword specific algorithm rather than a sitewide algorithm. It doesn’t help to send a reinclusion request because it is an algorithm, not a penalty. Google deindexed free directories around the middle of May.
Key takeaway: Avoid being too aggressive with exact match anchor text links.
17 Ways SMBs Can Survive the Google Penguin Update Effect Search Engine Watch
Key takeaways: Diversify your inbound traffic to sources outside Google like social media. Business owners should spend 5 times as much time on other websites than on their own site.
Google Penguin Update Recovery Tips & Advice Search Engine Land
Key takeaways: Google confirms that the Penguin update is fully live. Penguin is an algorithmic change (not a manual penalty). Panda 3.5 was released on April 19th.
Key takeaways: Focus on creating remarkable content for potential customers. Make sure to verify your site Google Webmaster Tools to check for any warning messages. Avoid hidden text or links and keyword stuffing.
Key takeaway: Anchor text is much less of a linking factor than in the past. Make sure at least 50% of your links use keywords that are not the keyword you are trying to rank for.
Google Penguin Update: 5 Types of Link Issues Harming Some Affected Websites Search Engine Watch
Key takeaway: Some linking factors that may have triggered Penguin are comment spam with exact match anchor text links, article marketing/article directories, and guest posts on questionable sites. The common denominator appears to be unnatural links.
Key takeaway: Avoid linking to bad neighborhoods as it can negatively affect your site. Avoid excessive link exchanges/reciprocal links.
Penguin Pain and Forward Planning Distilled
Key Takeaways: Don’t make a lot of changes to your site in a panic-driven state. Make sure you have a mix of anchor text links from other sites including brand anchor text, exact match, and phrase match.
Have you had an experience with the Penguin update? Please leave your comments below.
Charles Sipe is the Director of Search at Sparkplug Digital. He enjoys working on link building, creating great content, bringing back the Seattle Sonics, and always learning new things about online marketing. Twitter: @charlessipe
Feel free to contact us with any questions at info(at)sparkplugdigital.com