Everything is coming together now to create the perfect SEO storm. Penguin, Panda and Hummingbird have converged into core elements of the Google algorithm. Panda looks at off topic content farms, Penguin destroys sites with keyword heavy content and bad link profiles and Hummingbird has a new way of ranking content (there is more to it than that, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves). In this blog post, I’ll give you a little insight into what we have discovered.
Penguin: Bad Link Portfolio and Too Much Keyword Density
If you have a poor link portfolio, you will gradually lose rankings over time. Having a bad link portfolio means that you have sites linking to you in one or more of the following ways.
- With too much anchor text
- With poor authority
- That are off topic
- That have been dinged as being part of link network
These links will continue to hurt you over time. As time goes on, they will actually hurt you more and more, in most cases.
Outside of linking, sites that have too much keyword density in their content, will also slowly lose rankings over time.
Panda: Off Topic Content and Usability Metrics Kill You
If your website does not have a clear theme, Panda will come to get you. All of the content needs to be closely aligned or you run the risk of losing rankings. For example, if you run an Internet marketing company, but your website also has a large section on bicycles, that may cause Panda to devalue your website. Outside of this, if your site has poor usability metrics that means your content is low quality. This will cause your rankings to suffer. Look at things like:
- Bounce rate
- Time on site
- Conversion rate
- Page views
Hummingbird: Poor Social Signals, Thin Content and Mobile Ready
Post Hummingbird, you need to have social signals (people sharing and interacting with you website through social media buttons or sites) and fresh content. The fresh content shows Google the site is alive and it also gives users something to interact with on social.
This content cannot be thin ( just repetitive content with no substance) content, or content that does not cover a wide variety of topics on the subject. Google now looks for specific subject points in content. If it sees those, it values the content highly. Furthermore, everything must be mobile ready, as this is now a ranking factor.
Summing it Up
Online marketing is better than it has ever been. We can now focus on great marketing, opposed to tricking the search engines. Keep in mind, if you are dinged by Panda or Penguin, those penalties tend to stick around for some time. You have to wait until the algorithm runs next to recover. Make sure your website is 100% ready for the new era of SEO.