In the early hours of September 25th, Google slowly started rolling out a brand new Panda update (Panda 4.1) marking the 27th Panda release to date.

Panda verus Blue Magnet

What is Panda and why should I care?

Google Panda is a filter that has been designed by Google to penalise website from ranking well for the following reasons: Thin content (not enough useful content on the page) and poor performing content (even if you have a lot of content, if users don’t like it then Google won’t either). If your website has a lot of thin content page then you might have seen a drop in rankings and decrease in organic traffic after September 25th.

The Problem

Just days after the latest Panda update, we were informed of a website that had seen a significant drop in Google rankings overnight. Being aware of the recent Panda release, this was naturally the first area that our analysts investigated. Having quickly identified the issues, our specialists immediately took action to fix the problem.

Having quickly identified the issues, our analysts took the following actions to remedy the problem:

  • Crawled the entire website to identify any problem pages with thin or duplicate content.
  • Analysed data on Google Analytics to discover poor performing pages with little or no engagement.
  • Optimised or repurposed irrelevant, stale and thin content.
  • Deleted meaningless or irrelevant pages that were unnecessarily bloating the website.
  • Prevented Google from indexing pages that aren’t essential to the website.
  • Applied structured data mark-up to relevant pages to help Google to better understand the nature of the content.

Another major reason why the website was affected by Panda was due to a little glitch that is often very common on WordPress sites which results in a number of empty pages being generated on individual URL’s, giving the appearance of a very large website, with loads of pages containing little or no content. Our analysts addressed this problem by preventing Google from indexing these pages.

The Outcome

After having completed these steps, the website was re-submitted to request a fresh crawl and re-indexing by Google. Within 3 days after resubmitting the website to Google, the website’s organic traffic and Google rankings not only recovered, but was far higher than it had ever been.

Panda Chop

Blue Magnet One. Panda Zero.

This just shows how much Google values user engagement. If websites are current and relevant, and users are kept happy, then Google will be happy too!

Should you expect that your website has been hit by a Google Panda penalty, please contact us at info@bluemagnet.co.za for immediate assistance.