Google has rolled out its latest algorithm updates with Panda 4.1 and Penguin 3.0 on the scene to police search results. But how do these impact your SEO (search engine optimisation)?

The good news for businesses is that the changes have not dramatically altered the science behind why websites rank where they do: it’s still all about content and carrying out ethical SEO activity.

The bad news is that the rules governing the search world are now tougher.

Panda 4.1 was released on 25 September, and slowly rolled out through October.

Although Google has not officially released specifics about what this iteration entails, it is believed to further target:

  • Pages with little or no content
  • Duplicate content
  • Websites with a high volume of spelling and grammatical errors
  • Basic on-page SEO such as meta titles

Penguin 3.0 was rolled out on 17 October and is the first Penguin update for more than a year. Like the Panda update, it has been rolled out slowly.

Links from external websites is one way Google measures how valuable and informative a particular website is.  Penguin penalises websites with irregular and irrelevant links.

Again, there should be nothing drastic here for businesses to worry about. The update means that Google has made its algorithm smarter to catch websites attempting to manipulate the system using tactics such as buying links.

Online PR activity will attract natural and organic links. Draft and issue press releases to media outlets and other influencers such as bloggers with a healthy online presence. It will hopefully come with a link back to your website if they choose to share your story.