With Google’s recent confirmation that it would soon be rolling out its latest Panda algorithm update, we decided to create this short guide detailing everything you need to know about the update, and outline the steps that can be taken in order to prevent your website from taking a hit.
What is Google Panda?
Panda is a Google algorithm update that aims to improve the search rankings for websites that produce high quality content, and reduce the rank of low quality sites with poor, thin content. The first panda algorithm was rolled out in February 2011 and has evolved with regular refreshes since. Google has recently announced its latest version (4.2), which is rumoured to be its largest update in a while and could cause some major shifts in search results.
If we look at the two search results, the result from POCruises.com appears first in Google and offers visitors valuable information and satisfies their search queries. The other web page appears on page 12 of Google and comes from an affiliate website. This offers no value to most visitors and acts primarily to get visitors to click through to another webpage. This type of website is likely to see their rankings drop in favour of unique webpages, that offer visitors answers to their search queries.
How Could Panda Affect Your Website?
If your website has recurring examples of duplicate, thin content, offering little to no value toyourvisitors, then this is exactly what will trigger the Panda algorithm to place a penalty on your website. This could push your site further down the search results page, potentially resulting in a significant loss in traffic.
While the update may appear daunting at first, the likely outcome is that it will have an overall positive effect on your search visibility, as long as certain criteria are met. If you have been, and continue to, produce high quality content, relevant to your site visitors then the update shouldn’t have a negative impact on your site.