Google officially declared a rank algorithm update on 24th April, 2012 which is widely recognized as Google Penguin Update. Though I have not discovered any kind of official reference about the name “Penguin” however anyway, the title is not seems too bad. The algorithm change has affected approx 3% of the English searched results as declared in their own blog. However this is basically a more intelligent version of their prior update known as Panda and the result of each of these update has changed approx 15% of the search outcomes. At present that’s a dramatic change.
Based on my research and analysis over the time, I have noticed that the update mainly affected following 5 class of SEO strategies –
1. Continuous apply of exact targeted keywords to generate inbound links.
2. So many links from the very same websites or same labeled sites.
3. Practice of developing sub-standard quality or off-the-topic links mainly via the stereotype blog feedback (also comes with username spam), forum publish signature etc. specifically only to get a link for your website.
4. Creating less relevant contextual links or content material spam as explained in their official post (I was really not aware about such type of typical spam procedure).
5. Links from a website with minimum to no unique and useful content and specifically build for link developing or more distinctively 3-way link building objectives.
We have heard couple of questions from our clients on this like –
Should we not use article marketing or press release distribution anymore as Google appears to penalize primarily these content aggregators?
Should we only use the contextual link building procedure?
Should we remove all previous links that we have made from all article and press release sites etc. and etc?
Okay, allow me first to state that I have no plan to promote any of our existing services through that post. I would be happy to guide about the real key link building strategies after that update. The mantra is “Diversify, Diversify and Diversify”.
Domain Diversification – Lots of links coming from the similar categorized sites always appear suspicious to the search engines. That was applicable even before the affect of that update – the difference is that now Google is smart enough to detect them easily. For instance, if there are say 3000 links pointing to your websites and more than 50% links are coming from the article directories that’s unnatural and your website likely to be penalized. Your website require to have links from all possible resources like social media websites, blogs, business listing sites, directories, press release sites, article sites to name a few. You must not use or prioritise only one method by ignoring all remaining link building techniques.
Next thing is that diversification among the same category link building source. For example - are you submitting your articles to the same list of article directory sites again and again? This is the most common mistake, well, don’t make it happen anymore and instead use a list of good quality aggregators strategically.
Keyword Diversification –Exact targeted keywords as anchor text was beneficial to get on top about some months ago but these days that can be the key reason of penalty. That always sounds unnatural and you know Google always loves natural links ;-). So tweak your keywords using synonyms, phrase, singular-plural forms, preposition/articles in between or by changing the keyword order. Also consider to have some links using the landing page URL i.e. without any anchor text.
Content Diversification – Write content for users; create value etc. that what Google says. Well, what you really should do is that use quality unique articles to develop contextual links. Though it’s natural that the same article can be traversed among several content aggregators but it is safer to use an article version once only. Content spinner can be great to save your time; however I must suggest checking each spun version manually to confirm those are up to the mark.
Link Type Diversification – Now you also need to build non SEO friendly links for the sake of SEO! Yes, you should not have all “dofollow” links, that not looks real. The natural look link structure should have incoming links from the images, nofollow text links etc. from the relevant source.
URL Diversification – You must not build links particularly for the Homepage or only for some of the priority inner pages always. Your site lists other pages that might not be useful for SEO, but for visitors. So some balance should be maintained so that it all looks natural.
Hope that article will help to conceptualize what you require to do next.