Last week Matt Cutts, Head of Webspam at Google, announced the latest generation of the Panda Algorithm (4.0). We've not heard much about Panda in recent months as it was moved to a monthly / rolling update incremented by the month. But the announcement was of no real surprise as search marketers had noticed flux for a number of weeks previous to this.
Google is rolling out our Panda 4.0 update starting today.
— Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) May 20, 2014
The algorithm update to Panda comes just a short time after a "Payday Loan" algorithm was added to Google's growing collection (why no animal name guys?). Google told Search Engine Land, the PDL algo had:
Over the weekend we began rolling out a new algorithmic update. The update was neither Panda nor Penguin — it was the next generation of an algorithm that originally rolled out last summer for very spammy queries.
What These Updates Mean?
Ultimately, these updates are looking to complete the work formerly began by other updates and algorithms. If you were hit before and thought you "got off light" then you probably want to check your results, if you didn't get caught but expected to before and haven't changed your ways ... then expect issues. If you are playing ball and sticking to best practice and not grey/black hat seo then you won't have an issue here.
More importantly these updates mean that we can expect to see more updates in the coming months!
I expect to see an update to Penguin within a month (though at latest end of July). I am expecting to see a big updated to hummingbird sometime in August and likely another mid-size update to Panda before the year is out.
Wondering If You've Been Hit?
Its usually clear if you've had a penalty or been hit by an algo update. A while back I wrote about 2 great tools I use to check for penalties and correlation between ranking and updates - the google penalty checker tools are Panguin and Fruition.
Still not sure if you've been hit? pop over to RedStar.co.uk and contact me via the website.