So it’s that time of year again. Another Penguin algorithm update is looming from the search engineer team at Google. This one will be very big, much like the very first Penguin update according to Google webspam leader Matt Cutts.
According to Cutts, every Penguin update since the first launch back in April of 2012 has been merely “refreshes” of the original update. This upcoming Penguin according to Cutts will be the official 2.0 update which has many SEOs and Webmasters scared out of their mind. And with good reason. These updates typically end the life of many small businesses and once-profitable websites.
When Is It Happening?
According to a Tweet by Matt Cutts on May 10th, this new Google Penguin update will be happening in the next couple of weeks. In other words, we’re looking at an update being rolled sometime around May 24th or so. Google is so vague with this kind of stuff so it’s really hard to give a definitive date here. All we can really do is go off Matt Cutts tweet.
What To Watch Out For
The Penguin update is all about trying to identify spam link building tactics. Google continues to get better and be more innovative at finding out who’s gaming the system and who’s not. My guess is that since launching the Google Disavow tool, Google has been able to gain unprecedented amount of intelligence on what users consider spam. My theory is that they have compiled this data, made sense of it all, and are planning to roll out one big chunk of updates that reflect the spam they have found.
What To Do Between Now and Then
1. Don’t Over Panic
It’s key that you don’t over panic. Unless of course you’ve been straight up spamming this entire time, then I guess you probably should be panicking. But if you’re like pretty much everyone else, it’s important that you don’t go crazy trying to prepare for Penguin 2.0, because you could really hurt your site’s organic traffic without needing to.
2. Only Get Branded Anchor Text Links
From here on, stop getting links that contain anchor text of keywords you are targeting. Start over-compensating with more links that contain your brand or your domain name as the anchor text.
3. Start Building Up Your Authorship Rank
Get your Google+ profile cranking and make sure it’s synced up with your site via authorship markup. Google wants to start evaluating the popularity of a webpage based on who its author is, so getting that side of things going is a great safety measure.
4. Focus On Social
Start focusing on social not just because of its rankings signals with Google, but because of the organic traffic it can generate for you. Depending too much on Google search is just too risky these days. You need to be diversified in your organic traffic sources.
What To Do If You’re Hit Negatively by Penguin
When the update does come, and if you are hit negatively by it I highly recommend you continue more vigorously the 4 steps outlined above. This is not the first Penguin update by Google and you can be damn sure it won’t be the last. Start building a longer-term strategy today that will help you improve in rankings regardless of the updates that are made. If you feel you aren’t prepared to face these types of updates in the future, you may want to consider hiring an SEO agency or SEO Company India to help you get better prepared.
This article was written by Nicole. She has been writing about SEO for years, and enjoys helping people understand and get prepared for Google updates and other changes.