It’s possible you might have heard about Google’s three-headed animal update machine: Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird. Some people generally speak about it or you might have heard it in general conversation, but the nuances of it may still be rather unclear. In essence, these updates are the quintessential updates that help Google determine how your website ranks in the search engines. Each one of these updates has a particular focus that is predicated on high quality content and ethical marketing of your site. These items are imperative to understand and garner good website rankings for now and the future. Any violation of these updates results in a Google penalty, which is something that many sites have a difficult time overcoming.
Here is a brief overview of what these updates entail:
- Google Panda: Google Panda updates have a detailed emphasis on the quality of one’s content. Regardless of whether that content comes in the form of website content or sites that promote your site (and linking back to your site), the content must be of high quality. This sets out to alleviate content that may or may not have been copyright infringed or plagiarized.
- Google Penguin: Google Penguin’s algorithms and updates highly emphasize the requirement for high quality linking and link building. In the early days of search engine optimization, link farming and spamdexing were common. When a website goes against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, it spells bad news for those who want to spam the Internet. Google Penguin sets out to eliminate strategies of this kind. The thrust of this update is improving the content quality as a whole on the Internet.
- Google Hummingbird: This update is more arbitrary than the other two, but it is still nevertheless important to understand what the thrust of this update is all about. While general “practices” might not be affected by this, it is still important to know how this affects your site in regards to keyword combinations. Often billed as the semantic search, Hummingbird focuses on each word of the search query more generalized than specific. In other words, it seeks to be more human to try to figure out what your search query meant rather than the exact phrasing you typed.
Google continues to roll out updates to these items above, but the crux of these items help to solidify the basic knowledge of these updates. If you have any questions about how these affect your website or if you are in compliance with these updates, contact your web designer or local SEO specialist.