Google Penguin Update

Penguin update: Google Targets Over Optimization

What is the Penguin Update?

Google implemented “Another step to reward high-quality sites” with its April 24th, 2012 Penguin update; this important algorithm change targeted at black hat webspam is intended to promote high quality content and reduce overall webspam. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can be positive and constructive but in light of Penguin it is more important than ever to make sure these items are implemented correctly. Targets of the Penguin include:

  • Keyword Stuffing
  • Toxic(Low Quality) Links and Link Schemes
  • Over Optimization of Content
  • Spun Articles

While Penguins predecessor Panda affected 12% of queries, Penguin will only reach 3% of queries. But those 3% of queries are more highly spammed keyword queries. So we have already seen dramatic search result page differences on high volume/traffic related terms.

How Do I know if My Site Was Hit by the Penguin Update?

The easiest way to determine if your website was affected by the Penguin update is within your Google Analytics & Webmaster Tool accounts. If you see a dramatic (or minor) drop off in traffic that corresponds with the Penguin update dates below, there is a high probability that you have been hit. Also, if you received any messages in WMT’s that manual actions have been placed on your site; you have been hit with a penalty by Google.

Timeline of Events:


  • Penguin 2.1 (#5) – October 4, 2013
  • Penguin 2.0 (#4) – May 22, 2013


  • Penguin #3 – October 5, 2012
  • Penguin 1.1 (#2) – May 25, 2012
  • Penguin #1- April 24, 2012

Google’s Penguin Freezing Out Small Business Searches

WebiMax VP of Digital Strategy, Todd Bailey, discusses the Penguin Update on CNBC. May 14, 2012

Being at the top of a Google search results page is a highly sought piece of real estate for many businesses. After all, being listed near the top of the results page on Google can be the difference between gaining new customers and losing them to another company. A recent series of changes released by Google is affecting the way the search engine giant orders their rankings and small business owners have been hit particularly hard by this update…

Read the full article here

Next, review your SEO strategies from the past and present day. Have you or a vendor you hired been utilizing black hat or over-optimization techniques to gain rankings? Google, as well as many industry communities have continuously preached white hat techniques for SEO, including natural/organic link building through high quality content, public relations and pitches as well as designing sites with the user in mind, rather than the bots.

WebiMax’s Role

WebiMax is a leader in the United States, and internationally, in SEO and Internet marketing. Our team of 100+ employees works within the latest Google Webmaster Guidelines and Industry techniques to increase your brands authority across the Web. We practice what we preach with both on and off site organic campaigns that contain fresh and unique content to engage users. If you have seen extreme drops in your traffic or received a penalty by Google, please contact us immediately so we can get you on the road to recovery. Once penalized by Google, it takes large steps to get back within their good graces, so the sooner we begin the recovery process the better!

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