The head of Google’s anti-spam team- Matt Cutts has revealed the company’s plans to continue testing the Penguin update and giving out ‘jolts’ in the next few months. Speaking at the SES San Francisco, Matt also said that the Panda algorithm will also be at play every month but on a much muted and minor level.
The Penguin can Still Whack Hard
Matt said that Penguin is in its experimental stage till now. This means that while Google works on the adjustments Penguin requires, webmasters can prepare themselves for huge ‘jolts’. As reported on SERoundtable Matt said,
“I was giving context on the fact that lots of people were asking me when the next Penguin update would happen, as if they expected Penguin updates to happen on a monthly basis and as if Penguin would only involve data refreshes.
If you remember, in the early days of Panda, it took several months for us to iterate on the algorithm, and the Panda impact tended to be somewhat larger (e.g. the April 2011 update incorporated new signals like sites that users block). Later on, the Panda updates had less impact over time as we stabilized the signals/algorithm and Panda moved closer to near-monthly updates.
Likewise, we’re still in the early stages of Penguin where the engineers are incorporating new signals and iterating to improve the algorithm. Because of that, expect that the next few Penguin updates will take longer, incorporate additional signals, and as a result will have more noticeable impact. It’s not the case that people should just expect data refreshes for Penguin quite yet.”
Matt calls Penguin as a tool for adjustment, rather than a penalty. And this adjustment works towards sites benefitting less from spamming activities as compared to earlier times. The last we heard was the Penguin 1.1 which shook a lot of feathers.
The Panda is Softer Now
As revealed by Matt, the monthly Panda updates rolled by Google are now smoother and minor not causing much of an impact. The last we heard was Panda 3.9 which came in July. The Panda update was aimed at penalizing sites with poor quality content. However, both Panda and Penguin have caused a huge stir every time a refresh was rolled out with sites dropping from view and publishers at their wits end about what to do.
So, how do you prepare to ready yourself for the ‘jolts’ of the Penguin? For some insights, see our views on shaking off the Penguin and recovering from the whack.