Hey there, SEO warriors! Search Engine Academy, like so many others, has found out a Google Penguin update is coming sometime soon. Twitter deets:

Notice Of Google Penguin Update Via Twitter From Matt Cutts


Search Engine Land and Search Engine Watch first reported the Penguin update last week.

Let’s refresh our brains as to what the Google Penguin algorithm feature is all about. When Penguin was released on April 24, 2012, it was mainly designed to penalize sites with spammy linking schemes that consisted of taking a high-traffic keyword, creating thousands and thousands of links with the phrase in the anchor text, then parking those links on hundreds of sites. In other words, keyword stuffing in anchor text link on really scummy, spammy link farms with little domain diversity.

OK, you’re level set on what Penguin is about, and now we know it’s a-coming. Is there anything you can do to get ready? Glad you asked, because yes, there are a few things you can start checking to see if you’re possibly in line to nailed. Let’s go over them quickly, so you can get your butt to work, if need be.

Do a link profile analysis on your sites and your client’s websites. Take whatever tool makes you happy – Open Site Explorer, Xenu, SEO SpyGlass – whichever, and get the inbound back links for each of your sites. Google Webmaster Tools is also a great resource to review them. Dump the results in a spreadsheet, and sort them such that you can see two main things:

  • Anchor Text Diversity
  • Link Domain Diversity

What do we mean by these? First, make sure your anchor text is predominantly the company, business name and/or branding. Exact keyword phrases should be de-emphasized, and the majority of your anchor text should reflect the company or business name and branding.  Note the percentages and if you need to contact sites to get new, branded anchor text for your links, right now this very minute is the time to start. Seriously.

As far as link domain diversity is concerned, look at the domains. Do you have a lot of links from the same domain, or just a few domains? Do any of them look suspicious or spammy? Does anything really weird or off-kilter stand out to you? If so, make a note of those domains. If you find any, you need to contact the site immediately and get the links removed. If you can’t get a response, you may want to consider the Google Link Disavow tool.

Got it? OK, if need be, get cracking. Good luck! As soon as I hear more, I’ll post another article about it. As RuPaul says, “Good luck, and don’t frog it up!”

Keep it between the ditches and be safe!

All the best to you,