Google Penguin 4.0 And It’s effect on SEO

Internet titan Google Inc. released in September an update of their algorithm codenamed Penguin 4.0 which first launch was in April 2012. The company’s popular search function works with algorithms that rely on over 200 unique signals to find what a user searches online. The signals include stuff like keywords that are present on websites, site PageRank and the freshness of its content. It also takes the user’s region into consideration.

Penguin was introduced in 2012 to penalize the websites that practice black-hat search engine optimization techniques by decreasing their rankings. Black-hat SEO is when a webpage manipulates the links that point to the webpage which, when legit are big contributing factors to the website’s page ranking.


Google wants websites to be compelling and amazing, made especially for human audience instead solely for its search engines. Hence, it created guidelines for webmasters on how to design websites. The Internet firm ensures that the guidelines are implemented with its over 200 signals that determine page rank.

Penguin was updated periodically until this year. The Internet company has rolled out Penguin update in all languages. Two of its significant changes are being real-time and granular.

Penguin’s data is now refreshed in real time to make changes and refresh visibly faster. It means that the list of websites affected by Penguin is updated in real time. That means, whenever any of those sites is making enhancements, Penguin will detect faster after reindexing and recrawling the page.

For example, the Penguin filter would catch spammy websites which remain penalized even if they already have made changes and improvements. However, Penguin could only detect their improvements on its next run which could take time, like several months or more.

The last Penguin update 3.0 was on Oct. 17, 2014. If your site was hit by that, you waited almost two years for the penalty to be lifted. This is not the case anymore with this year’s Penguin 4.0.

Being granular lets Penguin adjust the site’s ranking based on spam signals instead of affecting the ranking of the entire site. Penalties are now applied to the violating webpage, rather than the entire domain.

With this year’s Penguin 4.0, Google will no longer confirm any succeeding Penguin update, since the update is a constant process. Hence, there is no sense to confirm. Here is the list of Penguin updates made by Google and the percentage they impacted on queries.

•    April 24, 2012 – Penguin 1.0 (impacted ~3.1 percent of queries)
•    May 26, 2012 –  Penguin 1.1 on (less than 0.1 percent)
•    Oct. 5, 2012 – Penguin 1.2 (~0.3 percent)
•    May 22, 2013 – Penguin 2.0 (2.3 percent)
•    Oct. 4, 2013  – Penguin 2.1  (around 1 percent)
•    Oct. 17, 2014 – Penguin 3.0 (around 1 percent)
•    Sept. 23, 2016 – Penguin 4.0 and real-time on

Google did not say a word on when the rolling out of Penguin 4.0 was or will still be completed. If it regularly visits your website, then you should likely see the changes. Otherwise, it may take longer.  To learn more about how you can avoid being hit with a penalty from google penguin 4.0, reach out so top internet marketing companies such as Scarlet SEO.

Read More Google Penguin 4.0 And It’s effect on SEO

Keeping Up With the Times Employing Updated SEO Strategies

Times are changing and SEO strategies should be updated.There are a lot of “guru opinions” on how to climb the SERPs (search engine results pages). Upon closer inspection, however, most of the SEO techniques and strategies that these “gurus” suggest are outdated and are barely considered as present-day “ranking factors” for SERPs, especially Google.What’s worse, a lot of website owners, especially those for startups, get dragged into these outdated SEO campaigns and end up spending thousands without any gains. To help mediate this problem, the Chelmsford SEO company compiled a list of strategies that actually works during the current times.Note that these strategies are backed by data and corroborated by web metrics research firms.

 Building Backlinks

Backlinks is still an essential ranking factor for search engines, especially Google. In fact, according to Ahrefs and Backlinko, there is a strong correlation between links pointing to a target page and that page’s SERP rankings.However, be warned. Google has long since started its own campaign to penalize those who buy backlinks and backlink sellers themselves. Those that Mountain View finds guilty either lose their rankings or get de-indexed from its search engine.Moreover, stronger link authority will generate better signals for ranking. For instance, a backlink from, which has high domain rating, will outweigh the backlinks from multiple domains with significantly lower domain ratings.Furthermore, according to Ahref’s data, using anchor texts for backlinks is much better than using naked URLs. In addition, Ahref found that pages that land the top spot on Google’s SERPs have an average of 13 percent exact match links – exact keywords used as anchor texts – and 24 percent partial match links – LSI keywords used as anchor texts.seo-24

 But be careful. Too much anchor texts can have the opposite effect. Aside from getting categorized as a spam page by Google, a 2010 study titled The Web Shatters Focus, Rewires Brains, a decline in comprehension is shown in response to the increase in the number of hyperlinks (anchor texts) within a page. Hence, an interesting and in-depth content can get ignored.

 Dwell Time: Make People Stay Longer

Dwell time has caused a buzz after getting mentioned by Bing’s senior project manager Duane Forrester. As the name suggests, dwell time is the amount of time that passes from when the user clicks on a link and to the moment that he/she goes back to the search results.There are number of strategies that can be adopted to make the user stay within site longer prior to his/her return to the search results. There’s the internal links – links leading to other pages within the site – and then there’s multimedia – image galleries and videos. However, the most basic and by far, the most effective, is a well-written, in-depth content.

 An informative and well-laid out content is not only appreciated by users but by Google as well. Note that the according to Ahref’s research, which coincides with Chelmsford SEO company’s own gathered data, pages with detailed, in-depth content rank higher than those with “slim” content in them. Moreover, Google tags in-depth content as “in-depth,” which gives them more visibility.

 Keywords and Why They Need Less Focus

The Chelmsford SEO company finds that keyword density on a page has little to no connection with SERP rankings of the target page itself. This is validated by a recent Ahref study that concludes the same.Back in the early days of the internet, spamming keywords within junk content worked. Not anymore. Bear in mind that Google’s AI is getting smarter. It can recognize which pages are spams and which ones actually hold useful information. Again, it’s much better to focus on a well-written content rather than keyword density. Google is all about user experience and as an entity that’s trying to climb the SERP rankings, your site should do the same.

Moreover, well-written content is more likely to be shared via social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Granted that the post is informative and actually contains specifics, Reddit can also be put to use. There’s nothing to fear if the write-up is filled with facts.

Read More Keeping Up With the Times Employing Updated SEO Strategies