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Some Recent Insights to the Latest Panda Updates

Posted on: March 13th, 2012 by John

The latest Panda updates started somewhere in mid January and have been updated frequently ever since. I am pretty sure they will be adjusting and refreshing the algo all year long. Don’t be surprised if this will be commonplace for Google every single year. So if you want to stick around long term, I think it is important to understand what Google wants. As confusing and frustrating as they are, they still own a huge share of the search market, and until that changes, this is the world we live in. Adapt or go back to working that shitty job

After analyzing and researching quite a bit for the last month, here are some commonalities I am seeing with websites that are getting hit with the dreaded Panda updates.

SEO Networks and Paid Links

Google is really coming down hard on blog networks. If you are buying links from these types of networks, don’t be surprised if you get a love letter from Google or suddenly lose rankings. Almost every site that I have seen loose rankings, have backlinks from these types of networks or sites.

Here is an example of some sites I am talking about :

Go to Google and search those domains. Can’t find them right? Well guess what. If you have a link on that site, once Google deindexes it, you lose all value from that link. So if it was a previously trusted high PR link with your main keyword anchored on there, you will probably lose rank. I am also not so sure Google passes some negative value over to your site.

Also, if you have links pointing to your website from blogs that have completely irrelevant content and are used for the sole purpose of gaming Google’s algo, don’t be surprised if you see lose in your rankings.

For example:

The simple, classic Boiled Egg, is indeed one of the finest and easiest edible delights known on earth, with just 70 calories, and full of nature’s most perfect form of protein. Dog Training Tricks work best.

While there are many ways of preparing Boiled Eggs, we suggest below the directions for making eggs which are the easiest to peel and which will not have the dark green discolored coating on the yolk (see step 2 for tips to help avoid the green discoloration).

If Google manually reviews this site, guess what? Bye bye. Do you really want to have links on sites like this? Not saying you can’t get away with it, but why even have to worry about it.

Anchor Text Diversity

Google seems to be scrutinizing websites that have unnatural looking anchor text portfolios. If you are building heavily for one or two terms, don’t be surprised if you get wacked on those terms.

Here is an example of an unnatural looking anchor text profile:

Dog training – 258
Dog training Fences – 1
Dog training with big balls – 3
train your dog well – 1
How to train a dog – 2
Train your Dog – 158 – 9
Doggy hammers – 2
Dog poopy – 1
Poopy the dog – 17

Guess what keywords lose the most rankings?

Just be conscious of your anchor text diversity. Do some linking with generic keywords, brand keywords, and your website as the anchor.

On Page Optimization

I am not going to get real in depth about best practices for your on page. But I do want to point out some things that I commonly see on sites that get hit.

Some Common things I see on Pandalized websites:

– Using basic themes or the same theme as many others
– Content is written for the search engines and not the end user
– Keyword saturation is excessive. You don’t have to repeat the main keyword over and over. Once or twice is fine.
– Content is further down the page or well below the fold
– Too many adsense or affiliate links above the fold
– Site speed is slllloooooooooowwww.

Now, I am sure there are other factors that play into these refreshes, but these are the ones that stick out most to me. The key here is to give Google what they want. Build a high quality website with diverse link and anchor text portfolios and you will be fine


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