It’s been a week since Google’s Pierre Far announced the release of “a slow rollout of an improved Panda algorithm” so by now you might be feeling the bite if your site was relegated to the naughty list.
Since many of our readers are not SEO people but instead are panicking business owners, CMO’s, and marketing specialists concerned over recent traffic drops, here’s a one-sentence (fragment) refresher: Panda is the one that goes after low-quality, thin, and duplicate content.
Like most Google algorithm announcements, this one raises more questions than it answers but most savvy webmasters and those who make their living in the SEO space are used to that by now. For instance Far states that they’ve included a few more signals to tip off the Panda to low-quality content, and that he expects it to somehow help small and medium-sized businesses, providing more diversity in the Page 1 SERP’s.
Anyone else hear something funny? When has the big G ever taken steps to help the little guy (who generally doesn’t have a big fat AdWords budget, which earns him the status of persona non grata)? Many who practice SEO for clients (like us) have marveled at how bigger brands with weak content continue to outshine smaller sites that have fantastic, informative, and helpful content, despite each algorithm update. We’ve also taken note of how quickly bigger brands seem to recover from manual penalties, when they are actually handed down. Meanwhile, Pop’s Pickle Shop languishes through multiple reclamation and disavow attempts only to be sent away by the Wizard to go fetch another broom or something.
Here’s one wild thought: maybe Panda 4.1 really will propel smaller sites’ pages with great content to the top of the SERP’s. Think of the disruption! Suddenly large brands (with large wallets) find themselves displaced from their positions of organic dominance. How would they need to respond? By buying more ads of course…well, just an unfounded theory here. There’s always the chance that this truly is a move to democratize organic search results – scientifically we can’t rule that out.
What’s it all mean for you…
Get thee to Google Analytics and review your traffic, then hustle to your keyword tracking method of choice, and look for rapid changes over the previous week. If you’re one of our clients (much love, btw), we’ve already been checking for you. If you’re not a current client and discover that you’re in need of some help, hit us up today. Algorithmic hits are the worst, but must be addressed nonetheless unless a business just decides to close up shop. We’ll assume that’s not a viable option for most, so if you find your site in a bad predicament know that WebiMax has helped many businesses that came to us with either manual and algorithmic penalties.
And if you find that your site has benefited from the Panda update, we’d love to hear from you and learn about your experience!