As a blogger, you know the importance of your site being found when people search for interests that you write about. One thing that affects if people find you or not is how you are ranked by website search engines. With over 60% of the search engine market, Google is the predominant way people search for sites. When they make a change to how their search engine algorithms work, it has the potential to impact your site’s rankings and discoverability.
“Penguin” is a Google algorithm that was first released in 2012. The aim of the Penguin update was to decrease search rankings of sites that violated Google’s webmaster guidelines and ultimately remove “search engine spam” from results.
An update to Penguin, 2.0, was rolled out in 2013 followed by another update, 3.0, in 2014. While there hasn’t been a confirmed date yet for the next update of the algorithm, it is expected to still happen this year, and possibly this quarter. Whenever a new algorithm update is released, it can mean quite a few changes for how sites are ranked.
The biggest anticipated change about the Penguin update is that it will run in real time. This means that instead of having to wait for another update to the algorithm, for example if your site has been penalised by a change, you could now recover at anytime.
So how can you prepare for the next update? Check out our recommendations below to make sure your blog or site is ready.
- Be sure and follow the guidelines set out by Google when working with brands on collaborations. These include using the nofollow tag when linking back to a sponsor’s site, disclosing the relationship of the collaboration in the post and creating fresh, compelling content.
- Monitor your page rankings frequently to see if any changes occur to traffic originating via Google. It’s also a good idea to check the search console to review your site’s performance and check for possible changes in Google’s search results.
- Support your mobile audience. Google recently released an algorithm change to increase page rankings for mobile compatible sites. If you’re not sure how your page performs on mobile devices, Google has a free tool for you to check and see how friendly your mobile design is.
- Last, be sure and check the Google Webmaster blog for the latest product announcements and updates.
Remember, there is still time to prepare, especially as the release date has not yet been announced, so if you do need to make any changes to your brand collaborations posts or site to make it mobile friendly, you can start making those changes now!