What Kind of Sites are Being Affected by the Google Panda Update?
The recent Google Panda Update has hit many sites hard, and the buzz about the effects of this Google Panda Update has been on the news for months now.
What is the Google Panda Update?
The Google Panda Update is an update to its algorithms released by Google, the world's largest search engine. The Google Panda Update is designed to demote sites that scrape or imitate content from other sites around the internet, a reminder of just how forceful Google can be when it comes to dealing with duplicate content. While this has boosted the ranking of some of the sites like YouTube or Vimeo, it has had a negative effect on many sites.
What Sites have Been Affected by the Google Panda Update?
The sites that appear to have been hit hardest are those that are known as "content farms". Content farms are defined by Wikipedia as a site that hires large number of freelance and professional writers to create content that is designed to provide maximum retrieval of the produced text by search engines, thanks to the fact that it is written to satisfy the regulations of the Google algorithms.
There are many websites that use content that is simply spam, but that contain high amounts of keywords and keyword phrases. The Google Panda Update is designed to demote those sites and drop their rankings through the floor. Now, instead of focusing exclusively on the keywords used on these sites, the Google Panda Update is causing the search engine to look through the content to find text that is actually relevant and accurate.
The main sites that have been hit by this update have been:
Sites such as Demand Media, Suite 101, Answers.com, and many other sites that use a large amount of text with keywords that is simply content to improve rankings of individual websites.
A number of technology sites that provide similar reviews on the same product have also taken a serious hit, with one of the major tech review sites in the UK not even making it onto the first two pages of a Google search results list.
Many sites that offer discount coupons or special shopping offers have also been hit hard, thanks to the fact that many of the pages on the websites appear to contain duplicate and spam content.
Many websites that display sales in various locations have also taken a hit.
What sites does the Google Panda Update target?
The Google Panda Update has been know to target sites that have:
A high amount of duplicate content, or content that is considered to be duplicate.
A low amount of original content, or content that is unique to the website.
Many advertisements that appear to be inappropriate or irrelevant to the topic of the website.
Many pages that have little original content.
Page title tag and content that don't match the search queries for which the page has high performance.
Over-optimizing web pages, or using text that has too many keywords, regardless of whether they appear
to be natural or not.
Pages that have low visit times
Pages that have high bounce rates
Poor rate of returning visitors
Few links leading to the page
Boilerplate or identical content on every page
Few links leading to the page from social media sites
If your site has any of the above characteristics, then you may want to take action to correct the website to ensure that your site isn't discarded or demoted by the Google Panda Update.
What can I do to change my site?
In order to reduce the effect that this Google Panda Update will have on your website, it is vital that you make some changes to your website. The following changes may be simple, but they are essential to ensure that your website doesn't take a hit from the Google Panda Update:
- Get rid of excess advertisements on your website. Pages that have too much advertising are usually demoted by the update, so get rid of any advertising that is excessive or irrelevant.
- Make sure that your pages contain no duplicate content from any other website. Ensure that all of the content posted on your page is completed unique.
- Find if any of your website's individual pages are getting more results from a keyword that is not the actual keyword of that page. Google is chastising pages that get these results, so make the needed changes to correct this problem.
- Always ensure that the headlines of your pages actually match the text and the content of those pages. The pages that have this discrepancy are those that are being hit hard by this latest update, so take the time to correct your web page.
- Make sure that any content that you post on your website is actually useful and authoritative. The more value your content provides those who read it, the higher your Google ranking will be with the Google Panda Update.
- Try adding a few more words to each page, as search engines will improve the ranking of pages that have a high word content.
- Make sure that your website is highly visible in social media sites. Get people to post comments on their social media sites, and make sure to share your website with as many people as possible to ensure that it doesn't get demoted.
- Try to build as many links to your page as possible, using every method you can. Don't only focus on social media, but work on getting other websites, forums, and article directories to link back to your website.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brian Garvin & Jeff West are the authors of Local Monopoly Marketing and founders of Rank911. They help their clients double their customer base within 60-90 days. You can also read more about them at their Rank911 Blog.