The early months of October have been rife with speculation about when Google might roll out its next update. As well as what exactly that update might be. There was talk of a Penguin refresh; a much anticipated (potentially overdue) update to Google’s most brutal algorithm. The community was also full of whispers of a rollout of Panda 4.1.
Google’s very own Gary Illyes stated at Search Marketing Expo East that Google was working on a substantial update to Penguin. Illyes went on to say that the update aims to make both webmasters and the end user happy. Citing this as the reason that an update has taken so long to come to the forefront.
Similarly, the harshness of Penguin was defended. It’s clear that Google wants its punishments to deter the behaviours and practices it disagrees with. This is opposed to just a slap on the wrist. When Illyes was announcing the algorithm rewrite, he suggests it could have been rolled out in early October.
However, it was then announced by Google that Panda 4.1 had in fact been involved in a very slow rollout since September 25th.
The SEO community has since seen changes in its organic traffic results as the update tries to further discern between higher and lower quality content. As well as distinguishing differences between ‘quality’ and ‘useful’.
Who will be affected?
As a result of this, SME websites who have vast amounts of quality content can expect to see increases in search visibility if their sites have optimisation.
As Panda tries to ‘reward’ those sites with better content, there’s a chance it could be affecting your own search traffic.
Good or bad, any major changes in your traffic may well be a result of one of – or perhaps both of – these updates. The Penguin update in particular will make everyone’s lives a little bit better. Sites hit by the update will have a chance to redeem themselves.