What Does The Penguin 4.0 Update Mean For Websites?

Google recently launched the latest update of Google Penguin 4.0. The week of the launch we noticed a bit of wobble, but that soon stabilised. However, some website owners experienced a dramatic fall.

So why are some websites affected by Penguin when others are not?

The reason for that is simple. Penguin is part of Google’s algorithm that identifies bad links that have been placed around the internet in order to boost search engine rankings for the recipient website.

The problem is that many inbound links have been purchased rather than earned on merit. Attempts to manipulate search results is something Google want to stamp out, and whilst some SEO companies persist with unruly black-hat link building tactics, it is their clients that ultimately suffer.

Now Google has incorporated Penguin as part of their core algorithm, an unnatural number of low-quality links will be penalised immediately. On the upside, sites that are penalised and rectified straight away will also be re-ranked immediately without suffering hammer blows. It would take around two years for brands to recover previously, now it can be pretty much immediately.

What are best practices for Penguin?

It’s been said a million times before, but the only way to rank in search engines is to publish premium content that engages readers. High-quality content will naturally receive inbound links whereby websites will benefit from higher ranking positions together with better trust and authority scores.

The focus of your content marketing strategy should therefore be based around building a brand rather than links. When consumers trust your brand and feel confident about buying products for your online store, they are more inclined to stay loyal. Changing brands carries a risk, and many people are resistant to change because it is a human condition to fear the unknown.

google-penguin-4-0-update-600x310If your content marketing strategy is focused around building inbound links, you will not feel the benefits for very long. Search engines measure trends and can determine the likelihood of a website receiving an average number of links within any given timescale.

Black hat SEO agencies that offer link building services tend to buy four or more links for their clients a month. If a brand was not getting any links, then suddenly starts being tapped four times a month, it’s a red flag to search engines.

The Google algorithm is more sophisticated now than it was three years ago. And since Penguin was released in 2013, thousands of websites have suffered because of poor content strategies. Now, digital marketing agencies will not be given the time to get away with manipulating search rankings and swindling their clients out of money for producing good results.

Google has always been intent on encouraging online businesses to publish premium content. Now they have figured out how to prevent SEO practitioners from cheating the system, end-users should expect to find more quality sites in their search results.

Online businesses on the other hand have no option other than to produce premium quality content in order to rank in search engines. If you want to know more about Websites or Online Marketing check out our service pages.

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