On April 25th, Google’s Penguin Update struck thousands of webmasters and changed organic ranking criteria for the foreseeable future. In the months since, many affected sites have undergone significant revisions to their content and taken steps to improve their link profiles. While these efforts have helped many webmasters and their pages rebound from their diminished rankings, the long-term effects of Penguin are now proving to be a threat for any pages which haven’t moved away from low-quality content and poor links.
The Penguin Update was not intended to be temporary. In fact, it will continue to be an integral part of Google’s algorithm going forward. Although some webmasters have recovered, it now becomes important to adhere to high-quality content and link building strategies in the future, as well.
Quality should not be overlooked when developing content and building a link profile. For any webmasters or online marketers, the following factors will be crucial in remaining free of Penguin-related penalties:
- Relevance & Originality Google has always had a preference for original, relevant content. Now, that preference has become a necessity in order to maintain rankings. Content should never be duplicated or too keyword dense.
- Avoid Paid Links Paid links were never seen as a “white hat” link building method by SEOs, but Google is now penalizing them and has even de-indexed several sites which sell links to users. Building relevant, natural links is now a key component to success in the SERPs.
- Utilize Blogging & Social Media Guest blogging and social media are effective ways to build authority in the rankings. Both should be utilized as a part of every brand’s ongoing digital marketing initiatives.
Today, organic rankings are still as important as ever to Internet marketers and their clients. However, Penguin’s impact on Google’s SERPs will be noticed for the foreseeable future and quality is now the most crucial element of any campaign.