If you are unfamiliar with Google’s 2012 Penguin algorithm, you simply need to know that it’s intended to fight webspam in search results. A measure taken to prevent black hat techniques like keyword stuffing or link-buying.
As of just a few days ago, the internet community all had it’s ears turning to Google’s latest, and last, update to it’s Penguin algorithm which supposedly allows results to be filtered in real-time.
Let’s get the scoop from the smart marketer’s over in SearchEngineLand…
Penguin goes real-time
Penguin is a filter designed to capture sites that are spamming Google’s search results in ways that Google’s regular spamming systems might not detect. Introduced in 2012, it has operated on a periodic basis.
In other words, the Penguin filter would run and catch sites deemed spammy. Those sites would remain penalized even if they improved and changed until the next time the filter ran, which could take months.
The last Penguin update, Penguin 3.0, happened on October 17, 2014. Any sites hit by it have waited nearly two years for the chance to be free.
Those long delays are now to be a thing of the past, according to Google. With this latest release, Penguin becomes real-time. As Google recrawls and reindexes pages — which happens constantly — those pages will be assessed by the Penguin filter. Pages will be caught and/or freed by Penguin as part of this regular process.
As Google said in its post:
With this change, Penguin’s data is refreshed in real time, so changes will be visible much faster, typically taking effect shortly after we recrawl and reindex a page.
Penguin becomes more page-specific, not sitewide only
Google also said this new Penguin algorithm is “more granular.” From its post:
Penguin is now more granular. Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site.
Previously, Penguin was a sitewide penalty. So, does being “more granular” mean that it’s now page-specific? Yes and no, it seems. We asked Google for more clarity about this, and we were told:
It means it affects finer granularity than sites. It does not mean it only affects pages.
Our best interpretation of this statement is that Penguin might impact specific pages on a site, or it might impact sections or wide swaths of a site, while other pages are fine.
At this time, the Penguin algorithm is not entirely yet live and is still being rolled out. With any new tech implement (and Google’s trend for moving like a turtle) it usually takes a few days to weeks to work out all the kinks, but keep a close eye in the coming weeks.
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Till next time.
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