After much speculation by search marketers over the past few days, Google announced that it had released an update to the Panda algorithm. The update, called Panda 4.0, was teased by Matt Cutts at Search Marketing Expo in March 2014 and then formally announced via a tweet on 5/20.
At the conference, Matt Cutts said the update should have a direct impact on small businesses and help them do better in search results. At the same time as the Panda update, there was also a refresh to another algorithm, Payday Loans 2.0, which targets sites manipulating rankings for what have historically been spammy queries.
The original Panda algorithm was released in February 2011 to filter out low-quality websites with little or sub-par content. The algorithm also went after content farms that were trying to manipulate search rankings. Since the original release, there have been 25 updates to the Panda algorithm! Further updates and refreshes are inevitable as Google continually focuses on improving the customer’s search experience. Learn more about Penguin and Hummingbird and other recent updates to Google’s algorithm over the past couple of years.
Whenever an algorithm update is released, a respective fluxuation in search ranking occurs. Search Engine Optimization experts and webmasters will be looking at analytics and search rankings to see what sort of impact the algorithm change has had on their clients’ websites. With 2 updates happening at the same time (Payday Loans 2.0 and Panda 4.0), it is hard for webmasters to parse out the effects from each. More information needs to be gathered in the next few days to see the full effect of the algorithm changes.
Linkmedia 360 is diligently watching our clients’ analytics to see how the update has impacted their search rankings. Our commitment to align our efforts with search engine guidelines safeguards our clients from these algorithm updates which aim to penalize manipulative and spammy tactics. Our focus on building a solid SEO foundation, creating quality content and earning online mentions is a timeless strategy that will withstand algorithm update after update.