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(And Other Google Algorithm Updates)
While the news of Google releasing a Panda update last weekend (January 9 – 10, 2016) is now a week old, Google announced today that it did indeed launch another core algorithm update, leaving some SEOs and webmasters scrambling to find the change.
— Gary Illyes (@methode) January 12, 2016
Quality Update to Google’s Core Ranking Algorithm
Panda was Google’s first major “quality” update—emphasizing the importance of creating unique, relevant, and remarkable content on the web.
Google Panda impacted roughly 12 percent of all organic search results in an effort to reduce webspam (you know, those sites that when Googling your company’s services you think, “How the hell are they ranking higher than me?”).
According to Shout Me Loud, Panda has been updated more than 15 times since its initial launch in February 2011, including four (now five) major updates.
Google Panda Update: January 2016
As for the latest Google Panda update, Google confirmed that Panda is now “baked in as one of Google’s core ranking algorithm,” as Search Engine Land puts it.
What exactly does that mean?
From now on, Google won’t confirm a “Panda update” or release “Panda 5.0,” “Panda 5.1,” etc.—they’ll just update their core ranking algorithm. This makes it harder for SEOs and webmasters to determine when the Panda ranking signals are tweaked and when they were released—but not impossible.
2nd Core Algorithm Update by Google in January 2016
If including Google Panda in their ranking algorithm wasn’t enough, it appears Google released a second core algorithm change this weekend (January 16 – 17, 2016).
While little is known about last weekend’s Google Panda update, even less is known about the most recent Google algorithm update.
Right now, we believe this is a phantom update left up to webmasters to decipher.
It’s important to note that the changes in SERPs over the week are not due to Panda or any other animal, according to Google rep Gary Illyes—inferring the impending Google Penguin update has yet to be released—and confirming another core algorithm change occurred.
As soon as we learn more we’ll let you know.
Was My Site Penalized by These Core Algorithm Updates?
Not sure if your website was penalized by these core algorithm updates? To answer this question, we recommend you spend some time in Google Analytics and Google Search Console to answer the following questions:
- Did my organic traffic from Google decrease compared to Bing or Yahoo?
- Did my search impressions drop significantly compared to previous periods?
- Did my rankings drop?
Google Penalty Recovery Services
Still not sure if your company’s website was penalized? Give us a call. We’ll help you determine if your site was negatively impacted by Google’s most recent core algorithm changes and what they mean for your business.
About The Author: Brandon works in Blue Corona's small business division, Rank First Local. Outside of SEO and analytics, Brandon’s interests include NBA and college basketball, tweeting, and playing with his dogs, Jax and Kona. Twitter: @doylestweet
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