Panda and Penguin: An Intro

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If you spend time around people who own websites, you might have heard that Google refreshed its Penguin algorithm last week. In previous months, the popular search-related buzzword was “Panda.” These two terms often leave people who aren’t involved with search engines wondering why everyone spends so much time talking about black and white animals.

If you’re not sure what all the fuss is about, this blog post is for you.

First, some background: The search results that appear when you do a search on any search engine are controlled by a complicated set of algorithms that prefer some factors over others. Panda and Penguin are two of the hundreds of algorithms that control the results you see on Google.

Coming onto the Google scene in early 2011, Panda was the first of these two algorithm updates. It originally had a huge impact on search results, affecting 12 percent of queries, according to Google. This update aimed to demote low-quality websites. The hardest hit sites had thin content, duplicate content and sites with more ads than content. With this update, Google made it clear that only quality sites should be found near the top of the search results.

Penguin was Google’s answer to over-optimization and Web spam, becoming part of Google’s formula in April of last year. Penguin looked mostly at sites’ backlinks to determine if the links were created organically, or if they were manipulated by the site owner or an employee of the site owner. Wise webmasters stopped stuffing the anchor texts they used with as many keywords as possible and moved toward earning links instead of building them.

At Fahrenheit Marketing, our talented SEO team members keep up with Google’s ever-changing updates to drive traffic to our clients’ sites. If you’re interested in hearing about how Fahrenheit Marketing can bring qualified leads to your site, contact us today.