Google Penguin and Panda - Algorithm explanation

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These slides were presented during SMX Paris in June 2013 by an ex-Googler from the Search Quality team, Sebastien Monnier, now a SEO at Woptimo International. He gives a few insights on how Google engineers think penalties.

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Google Penguin and Panda - Algorithm explanation

  1. 1. 11SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERPenguin and Panda:What did they do?
  2. 2. 22SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERSébastien MonnierCEO, Woptimo
  3. 3. 3••••
  4. 4. 44SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERAGENDA1. Google Penalties : Where we are now2. Google‘s Data3. How to create a good algorithm4. What about this new Penguin?
  5. 5. 66SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERAUTOMATIC PENALTIESAutomatic penalties are based on data and try to fix breaches in Google’salgorithm.Examples :Fight against automatic gibberish text (charabia)- Check every n-grams on a page. If less than n% of the n-grams can befound anywhere else on the web. Apply a high probability of spam- If a page has more than 10 highly competitive keywords separated bycomma Classify it as keyword stuffed page
  6. 6. 77SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERMANUAL PENALTIESManual penalties are specific fixes for one or several websites. They aremostly applied by Search Quality team. Based on specific guidelines for issues usually too difficult to tackle withalgorithms Ability to semi-automate them with simple rulesExample:This website is ranking for this query. However, it has 15 links with the sameanchor from blog articles that do not seem legitimate This website should not get benefits from these links and future linkswith this anchor should be discounted until the webmaster removes badlinking.
  7. 7. 88SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERPANDASuggestion for a Panda recipe:Number of bounces back to serp in less than 30 sec+Number of visits that end up clicking on ads or useless websites-Number of people searching for your brand-Number of social shares=Panda adjustment notation
  8. 8. 99SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERPENGUINMain Penguin algorithm is about linksExample:If 10 sites linking to you with the same anchor have already beenneutralized, the 5 others links with this anchor may be neutralized aswell + decrease in ranking on this keyword.These 5 websites may also be automatically neutralized if there are manysuspicious links. This hurts a lot link-wheel, spam comments and other BH techniques
  9. 9. 1010SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERGoogle’s data
  10. 10. 1111SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERSIGNALS GOOGLE IS USING OR MAY USEWhat are Google’s source of information:• Your website: HTML code, images, videos…• Other website: Backlinks, mention…• Specific website: Social signals, interaction…• The Serps: click-trough rate, bounce back to serp, number of search for agiven query…• User’s behavior: based on• Google Toolbar ??• Chrome ??• ISP data ??• Web browser emulation ??…• Quality Rater’s feedback
  11. 11. 1212SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERWhat is Google’s approach for new algorithms?
  12. 12. 1313SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERWHAT GOOGLE CARES ABOUT• SPEED: Never slow down a query• Serp quality: Are the provided changes actually making things better• Collateral damage: Do I hurt something else?• Cost: Is this algorithm too expensive?• Communication: Will spammers change their behavior in a good way?It seems that communication is now more important than collateral damage
  13. 13. 1414SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERCREATING A GOOD ALGORITHM…• Isolate a quality issue• Divide between good and bad user experience• Check data associated to good experience and to bad experience• Find a good mix of data and set up a threshold• Launch an A/B serp testing• If quality is increasing, launch it…
  14. 14. 1515SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERWhat about this new Penguin
  15. 15. 1616SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERWHAT WE KNOW• Penguin 4 goes much deeper into the websites• It also hit adult websites• It is global Penguin can’t be too specific (ex : fight against advertorials…) Mostly about bad linking
  16. 16. 1717SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERNEW APPROACHManual battle against bad links is expensive and not that efficient…Google may want to change its approach regarding backlinks.What could by this new approach? Discount any backlinks that is not white-listedBy default, 1 new backlink is suspicious unless considered otherwise.All backlinks that have just a small amount of suspicion should beneutralized.
  17. 17. 1818SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERDANGERDanger of this method: Serp quality can decrease…As linkspammers can be very good sites too.Webmasters need to be educated and the serp should still be relevant.How to solve this problem? Google Penguin !!!
  18. 18. 1919SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERSTEP BY STEP GUIDE TO PENGUINStep By Step :1st – communicate (a lot) about bad links2nd – go gradually. Do not penalize all the backlinks in 1 shot3rd – hold the changes and assess the post-penguin Serp quality4th – If everything’s ok, release the beast5th – Reiterate with other backlinks / sites
  19. 19. 2020SMX PARIS – 6 ET 7 JUIN 2013 @SMONNIERThank youFollow me @smonnierSEO – LINK MARKETING – GOOGLE ANALYTICS – ADWORDS – ERGONOMIE WEB –CRÉATION DE SITES – R&D

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