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Well, it’s happened. Search Engine Academy, along with everyone else, learned that the Google Penguin update 2.0 went live on May 22. According to Google’s Matt Cutts, this rollout affects about 2.3% of English U.S. queries. That being said, Penguin has been implemented world-wide. Here’s what else he has to say about the latest update:

“It’s gonna have a pretty big impact on web spam.” It’s a brand new generation of algorithms. The previous iteration of Penguin would essentinally only look at the home page of a site. The newer generation of Penguin goes much deeper and has a really big impact in certain small areas.”

Google Penguin has been updated three times since the initial implementation on April 24, 2012. So, what is this latest iteration targeting? Here’s a quick overview of the types of spam and webmaster practices that will be impacted:

  • Black hat web spam – shady and scammy linking practices, such as keyword stuffing
  • Advertorials – advertising and paid links that try to disguise the fact that these are paid links
  • Rating and devaluing upstream linking – the algorithm has been refined to analyze links that have been bought
  • Detecting hacked web sites –  notify webmasters of possible hacking and malware placed on sites, and being more specific about the problem
  • Authority – sites that have developed into authoritative information resources will be recognized as such
  • Google Panda – identifying sites that may be borderline shady or gray under Google Panda requirements and boosting sites that previously had been “Panda slapped,” but have since cleaned up their act
  • Clustered results from same domains – if you go deep into SERPs – several pages back – you will see multiple results from the same domain further down in search results
  • More, better detailed information for webmasters to pinpoint problems within their web pages has also been included this update.

Check your Google Analytics to see if there’s a drop in your traffic and look at Google Webmaster or other tools to see if your keyword rankings have been affected. If you think you’ve been targeted, identify the specific problem – inbound back links, poor quality content, a high ad-to-content-ratio or malware – and start planning on how you’ll fix these problem areas.

Have you been impacted? If so, was it good or bad? Let us know in comments!

Until next time…keep it between the ditches!

All the best,