Google continues its ongoing efforts to improve the quality of the search results it returns. Google’s head of web spam, Matt Cutts tweeted the release of Panda 4.0 earlier this month and the web went crazy. Panda is designed to lower the ranking of what it determines are lower-quality content sites. But like previous versions, this update sometimes unfairly penalizes high-quality sites.
Panda penalizes spam and copied content. Its algorithm looks for certain words and phrases and webmaster attempts to fool the algorithm, as well as content spinning. Content recognized as general rather than specific is considered of low quality. Inbound links also are examined for quality.
So, what is quality content? Generally speaking, high quality means content at the level of published books or in popular magazines.
But what does that mean?
Panda has been known to be less than perfect and this is why a Panda false positive is possible. How the updated Panda algorithm was developed and validated, and how it performed in its testing phase before release has not been not publicly divulged. This makes upgrading a web site that has been negatively affected by this release more of an art than a science.
Complicating things with this Panda 4.0 release is that at virtually the same time Google released its Payday Loan 2.0 spam algorithm. Webmasters are exercising all of their skills to tease out which algorithm forced a site downgrade and what specific page content was the cause.
Do you have concerns about how Panda will effect your business’ website?