From Panda, Humming Bird to Penguin Algorithm, Google has been pounding and slapping websites left right and center. Here are the Cause – Effect – Solutions for the algorithm penalties in the name of those soft and silky creatures. Let us see the major algorithmic penalties from the recent ones dating back .
The Deadly Penguin 2.1 or Penguin (ver-5) Algorithmic Penalty
Period: Oct 1st week 2013. This is another refresh of the original Penguin 2 Update
Cause: Bad Backlinks- From article directories, paid links, low quality directories, PR sites, Social bookmarking, Sitewide links, Link farms
Effect: The sites hit by this update almost lost 80% of the organic traffic from Google leaving several website owners devastated with no clue on what to do next.
Solution: Backlink Audit- Download all the backlinks from Google webmaster tools and cleanup all the bad links (article links, paid links, low quality directories, PR sites, Social bookmarking, Sitewide links, Link farms). Contact website owners; request them to remove the links. Send remainders if you don’t get a reply. Wait for 15 days since your first request and then disavow all bad links through the disavow tool.
The Flipping Humming Bird Algorithmic Penalty
Period: August 4th Week 2013. This is an updated version of Caffeine with LSI content.
Cause: Lean content and long tailed keywords
Effect: Pages which ranked higher for long tailed keywords disappeared in the SERPs while pages with LSI content especially with question answer style content ranked good.
Solution: Remove all lean content and delete those pages with very little content. Build new pages with fresh long content with LSI and Question Answer style.
The Panda Refresh Algorithmic Penalty
Period: June 2nd Week 2013. This is yet another panda pounding on the sites missed out on the previous Panda update.
Cause: Duplicate content, Thin content, Scrapped Content, Low quality content, Copied Content
Effect: Pages with the above content where totally wiped out of the search results, no matter how much backlink juice they had. In some cases the domains were also penalized.
Solution: Create fresh and unique content frequently which keeps the visitors engaged. This can be achieved by blogging, FAQs, Guides, How to Presentations etc.
The Penguin 2.0 Algorithmic Penalty
Period: May 4th Week 2013. Although this penalty was rolled out a couple of months back, Google officially announced that they have rolled out Penguin 2.0 which is all about links as Penguin 2.1, but sites where mainly hit on their home page rankings.
Cause: Same as Penguin 2.1 Bad Backlinks but links pointing to the home page- From article directories, paid links, low quality directories, PR sites, Social bookmarking, Sitewide links, Link farms
Effect: Unlike Penguin 2.1 only the homepage and domains where affected. Millions of sites disappeared from the index of Google and their searches.
Solution: As of Penguin 2.1
The Phantom Algorithmic Penalty
Period: May 2nd Week 2013. No official announcement but a large number of sites where affected by this Unknown aka Phantom Update
Cause: Unknown- Speculated to be an Untold Penguin Update
Effect: Single page sites and sites with too many backlinks were hit hard.
The Panda Algorithmic Penalty
Period: March 3rd Week 2013. Jan 4th week 2013 This was the devastating algorithm update officially announced in the first week of Jan and subsequently by March.
Cause: Duplicate Content, Lean Content, Content Scrapping, Syndicated Content, Spun Content,thin Content
Effect: Almost all the article directories, content syndication & content scrapping sites were taken down. Sites like ezinearticles.com, amazines which dominated the SERPs for years disappeared overnight.
Solution: Same as panda refresh
SIM solutions to prevent & protect future penalties