After weeks of speculation, Google confirmed that it has launched an update to its search algorithm. Just recently, the tech giant confirmed an update on Google Penguin, marking the first time it updated its Penguin algorithm in over a year.
In a post on Google+, engineer Pierre Far confirmed Google’s latest move, saying that Penguin 3.0 is currently affecting less than 1% of English queries in the United States. The confirmation came less than ten days after a number SEO and online marketing experts got wind of a possible Penguin update at Pubcon Las Vegas on October 9. However, Far explained that Penguin 3.0 is actually not a full-fledged update, unlike what everybody was expecting.
Far said the latest update was just a “refresh.” Its main focus is to help websites that have cleaned up their act after receiving penalties during the previous Penguin update. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that sites with newly discovered spam will get out scot-free. Far also pointed out that one of the goals of Penguin 3.0 is to ensure that offenders will get lower search rankings.
Meanwhile, for those who are confused with the difference between a “refresh” and an “update,” here’s a quick explanation. When it comes to a refresh, Google doesn’t add any new signals to its search algorithm, which is what an update is for. Instead, during a refresh, the tech giant simply runs the algorithm again to demote spammy sites and help out those who have recovered from a Penguin penalty since the last refresh.
For those who aren’t affected by the refresh, don’t relax just yet. And for those who are dying to get back on track after recovering from a Penguin penalty, there is still hope so don’t despair. Far said Penguin 3.0 is, in fact, still rolling out. This basically means that the full power of the refresh has yet to be unleashed. “You may notice it settling down over the next few weeks,” Far said, adding that the refresh is a “slow worldwide rollout.”
But regardless of whether Penguin 3.0 is just a refresh or a full-blown update, the advice of SEO and online marketing experts remains the same. If you want to avoid being penalised and subsequently demoted in the search rankings, make sure you avoid doing spammy activities on your website. Also, check the sources of your online traffic and always make sure you regularly conduct an auditing of your website.
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