Google Penguin 2.1. What is it and How to Recover?
As you might know that last Friday Google announced the release of Penguin 2.1 search spam update on its search algorithm.
Penguin 2.1 launching today. Affects ~1% of searches to a noticeable degree. More info on Penguin: http://t.co/4YSh4sfZQj
— Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) October 4, 2013
Google’s head of search spam also mentioned that it impacted about 1% of search queries. This brings us to the next question of what is Penguin 2.1
What is Penguin 2.1:
Penguin 2.1 update is just an add-on update to the initial Penguin 2.0 Google update that was released in May 2013. It penalizes everything spammy that the original Penguin 2.0 updated missed. And this is the reason that the fundamentals of the Google Penguin update has not changed.
Its very important to note that Penguin 2.1 (or Penguin 2.0) looks at the website from a backlinks point of view and not the on-site content. Spam on-site SEO content has always been penalized by the Panda update which Google runs on a regular basis.
Based on our experience and analyzing different websites affected by the Penguin 2.1 we have found that it mainly targets the following links and activities.
- Low quality non-relevant links
- Spammy links
- Paid links that are not mentioned as nofollow
- Guest blog site-wide links.
- Spammy or black hat SEO techniques
- Article syndication links
- Forum or blog posting abuse (such as planting links within forum signatures, or creating really low quality blog posts on 3rd party sites, like Blogger, for the sole sake of acquiring backlinks)
- Large number of exact match keywords used within external links
- Large number of backlinks coming from one website (usually referred to as site wide links)
- Widget links
- Aggressive link exchanges
Please also note that this is just a software update and not a manual action. However, if you have lost traffic and the rankings of your site has decreased for various keywords after this update then the chances of getting manual penalty are high.
So, how does one recover from Penguin 2.1?
The steps to recover from Penguin 2.1 Google update are [pwal id=”50385997″ description=””] very similar to Penguin 2.0. Following are the steps that one should follow although they are not as easy:
- Compile a list of backlinks pointing to your site.
- Weed out the good links from it and have a list of links that you consider spammy and non-relevant. When making this list make sure to look at the above list that Google considers bad for Penguin 2.1
- Contact the website owners of each of the spammy or non-relevant websites and request them to remove the backlink. There would be some website owners who may not remove or would ask for money to remove them. Leave such links off.
- Finally, submit a Google disavow request through Google Webmaster Tools.
- Run a good SEO campaign from now on.
How to be Penguin-proof in future?
Focus on content more than backlinks. Good and high quality content would automatically get you the backlinks that you need to get your site ranked higher on Google. Consider social media marketing and on-site blogging to be very important and focus on it. Develop share-worthy content for your site.
Here are some examples of what you should be doing:
- Use YouTube for your business.
- Use Google+ (authorship and publisher tags)
- Develop and maintain a Google+ page for your business or website.
- PRWeb press releases (Do not post keyworded links in it)
- SB Wire press releases (Do not post keyworded links in it)
- Develop and Maintain LinkedIn profile pages (Personal and Company Pages)
- Develop and Maintain Pinterest page
- Develop and Maintain Facebook pages (Individual and Company Pages)
- Twitter profile pages
- On-site blog management and Marketing.
- Use stumbleupon, digg, reddit, delicious etc.
- Develop and share inforgraphics (orginal and creative)