Penguin 4.0 Update. What this means for your SEO.

Almost two years in the waiting and Penguin 4.0 is finally here.

What is Google Penguin?

We’ll just quote Wikipedia on this one.

“Google Penguin is a codename for a Google algorithm update that was first announced on April 24, 2012. The update is aimed at decreasing search engine rankings of websites that violate Google’s Webmaster Guidelines by using now declared black-hat SEO techniques involved in increasing artificially the ranking of a webpage by manipulating the number of links pointing to the page.”

In other words, it’s an algorithm that helps users find your website when searching on Google. And it just had a major update. Find out what the Google algorithm update means for your website.


1. Google Penguin 4.0 goes Real-Time!

The biggest change by far are real-time updates. Previously, when your website was penalised by Google, you would have to wait until the next update for Google to “forgive you”, regardless of the changes you made. Now it is refreshed in real-time, which means that changes take into effect pretty much after Google re-crawls and re-indexes your website. This is great news for those that have made a mistake in the past and are quick to resolve it.

This is what Google have to say about this:

“Once a webmaster considerably improved their site and its presence on the internet, many of Google’s algorithms would take that into consideration very fast, but others, like Penguin, needed to be refreshed. With this change, Penguin’s data is refreshed in real time, so changes will be visible much faster, typically taking effect shortly after we recrawl and reindex a page.”

2. Backlinks.

You may have a lot of backlinks to your site, but not all of those links are actually good for it. In fact, some links can harm your website, so you should keep a close eye on this. With the rollout of Penguin 4.0, you now have the ability to “disavow” any unnatural links to your website and thus avoid being penalised by Google. Do that via your Webmaster Tools, it’s a 2-step process.


3. Individual pages.

This is actually good news for you. Where as previously, one bad page could get your whole website penalised, now with the real-time updates, any penalties will be delivered to a specific page rather than an entire domain. Sounds fair!

Whatever happens — the updates will take a while to roll out and some of the points above are still a bit of a speculation, but from quite trustworthy sources. 🙂