If you haven’t heard of Google’s Panda, you might want to start paying attention – it has caused some publishers to seriously think about how to produce better material for websites. Panda is a filter that lets Google sift out the content of websites they suspect lacks important substance. Panda is called an “update” because the filter runs periodically.
In layman’s terms, each time Panda runs, all the content Google knows about is re-sifted. Improved content escapes the filter, and poor content gets caught again, and the page it is on never makes it to a search engine results page.
Panda 1.0 was released in February 2011 and targeted sites that copied content from other sites. The newest Panda update, version 3.3, is now effective. There are about 40 search updates coming from this newest version. In it, Google has gotten rid of something it has been using for years, saying, “We often use characteristics of links to help us figure out the topic of a linked page. We have changed the way in which we evaluate links; in particular, we are turning off a method of link analysis that we used for several years. We often rearchitect or turn off parts of our scoring in order to keep our system maintainable, clean and understandable.”
Another excellent update is the local search rankings – “to find results from a user’s city more reliably…we’re better able to detect when both queries and documents are local to the user,” says Google on their more extensive and detailed post (to find out all of the other updates that came with 3.3, click here.)
Sites that continue to have solid, informative content will not fall through the Panda filter!
At Smellycat Productions, it is our duty to keep you informed and on-top – and out of Panda’s greedy paws. We keep up with the updates and optimize our client’s websites accordingly. Do not hesitate to give us a call or e-mail us to ensure your site does not get eaten by Panda!