Google algorithms are constantly changing in order to keep up with modern trends and modern security needs. However, many websites can find they are not properly prepared for these updates, leaving their sites in trouble with Google’s ranking system. With Panda’s update, here are the things you should be aware of in order to keep your site ranking well in the search engines:
1. The New Update
This update will not necessarily be an entire overhaul, which is something many websites can breathe a sigh of relief over. This update is less about changing the overall algorithm and more about simply improving search engine accuracy and relevance. The update is to fine-tune search engine results in order to give consumers the most accurate and current information available.
While it is difficult to speculate exactly how webpages will be affected by this update, many believe that webpages will actually see an improvement, for the more fine-tuned results are, the better chance there is someone will happen upon your webpage. Additionally, the update is intended to make relevant results appear faster. However, as with each update, it is important website owners are aware that their sites an be affected negatively. As such, consider contacting an SEO consultant.
Website owners can prepare in advance for the update. For those who keep a close eye on Google’s algorithm changes and strategies, your websites will not need too much to prepare for this update. However, if you have not taken the time to optimize your site for Panda in the first place, it is crucial you prepare your site as soon as possible.
Some of the major changes to make are to remove duplicate content, remove the overuse of keywords, and the spinning of articles. Duplicate content hurts SEO, as it makes your site seem unreliable. Google’s algorithm has trouble deciding which page to show in the search results. Overusing keywords appear as spam in Google’s filter, hurting your website’s ranking. Lastly, spinning articles is in essence plagiarism, which Google heavily frowns upon, and your site will suffer.
4. Site Navigation
Try to avoid over crowding your site with ads, pop ups, or other irrelevant information. Your site’s main focus should be the content, and other things can get in the way of the user’s experience. If a site is difficult to navigate, which Google will check with their bots, your search engine ranking could go down.
While it is important to SEO to have links in your content (links that direct users to both more content on your site as well as to other high ranking sites), clean up any backlinks that are spammy, especially any purchased backlinks. These links will hurt your Google ranking. In fact, they probably already have hurt your ranking, but with the update, your site will suffer even more. Be sure that your SEO agency is following best practices with your link building.
You will also need to make sure that you are building new links to your site at a consistent rate over time. Some good ways to do this are to do regular press releases. Even though these should be nofollow links, they are good for establishing your brand. Using a guest posting service can also be an effective way to build your brand over time. Just make sure that you are posting on relevant sites with your target audience in mind, and always provide value for the readers.
There are also many benefits that a social media campaign can have on your backlink profile. These too will be mostly nofollow links but again, are great for spreading your brand, messaging and overall content. The more you get shared, the higher the chances that you naturally gain traffic and links.
Though Panda’s update may not be as large and invasive as other updates, it is still important to make sure your site is ready.