Google penguin update

As the nights start to draw in and with Christmas fast approaching, we witnessed a new Penguin update.

SEO

The biggest SEO update for this month saw another Penguin released on Friday 17th October. This was dubbed the Penguin 3.0 and was the first to be released in over a year.

The Penguin is an algorithm update which was first seen in early 2012 which aimed to target websites which attempted to manipulate Google’s search results using links which broke set guidelines.

–          Penguin 1.0 (or Penguin 1): April 24, 2012 (affected 3.1% of queries)

–          Penguin 1.2 (or Penguin 2): May 26, 2012 (affected around 0.1%)

–          Penguin 1.3 (or Penguin 3): Oct. 5, 2012 (affected 0.3%)

–          Penguin 2.0 (or Penguin 4): May 22, 2013 (affected 2.3%)

–          Penguin 2.1 (or Penguin 5): Oct. 4, 2013 (affected 1%)

There have been a number of variations of this update, all focusing on cleaning up poor quality link building methods.

The best ways to avoid getting a Penguin or Panda penalty is to create good quality content and earn links through shares. Don’t just build links with repetitive anchor text and churn out uninteresting guest blogging articles with links pointing back to the site that no one is likely to read, as this will get you into trouble. Put some effort into your content and be creative. Make videos, white papers, infographics and games as this will provide your users with something that they can share.

Google Page Rank remains frozen

PageRank is used by Google to determine the importance of a web page. It’s considered to be one of several factors used to determine which pages appear in search results.

Matt Cutts talks in a recent video about PageRank and that he thinks it has started to lose some of its value. Moreover, in his keynote speech at PubCon in Las Vegas a few weeks ago, Cutts revealed the reason why PageRank hasn’t been updated since February and why possibly it may not be updated at all this year.

Google launches Universal Analytics Upgrade Center

Google has now launched a Universal Analytics Upgrade Center. The centre will provide tools and guidelines to help you transfer your Google Analytics properties to Universal Analytics. This is the first of four phases in Google’s plan to upgrade all Google Analytics properties to the new version.

Google is indexing apps

Google has started rolling out its app indexing service in the US which means that the UK is about to follow.

App indexing allows webmasters to connect pages from their website to specific content within their Android app. This function will therefore enable Android smartphone users who have the appropriate app installed to access it immediately from relevant mobile search results on Google.

Social media

An article on Search Engine Journal revealed that social media networking site Twitter has given businesses advice on how to drive sales during the festive period. According to a Twitter study, 54% of users said promotions on Twitter were what motivated them to make a purchase.

The company has recently released consumer insights and recommendations for how to use the social network most effectively.