Google Panda is an update to the algorithm of search results of Google which was released on February 2011 at first. This update is targeted to the lower rankings of low-quality websites or thin sites and increase the rank of the higher-quality sites near the top of the search results. The name Panda originated from the Google Engineer Navneet Panda who developed this technology which enabled Google to develop and implement this algorithm. A report was reported by CNET regarding the rankings of social networking sites and news websites and a decrease in the ranks of sites that contained a lot of advertisements. This update affected the rankings of around 12% of total search results. After the Panda update implementation, many websites became occupied with complaints of copyright infringes and scrappers having higher rankings that site with original contents which also included Google’s webmaster forum. Google asked for data points in order to assist detecting scrapers publically. There has been several update on Google Panda since the original implementation while it was rolled out globally in April 2011. Google Provided an advisory forum on its blog in order to help the affected publishers and gave some way for self-evaluation of the quality of such websites. Google gave a lists of 23 points on its blog that contained the answer to the question “What counts as a high-quality site?” which is expected to assist the webmasters get into Google’s mindset.
Google Panda affects the ranking of a specific section or an entire site instead of individual pages on the site. According to Google, it only removes some pages from low-quality pages or replicates the contents to hold the traffic on another high-quality page and suggests that such page must be deleted and blocked from being indexed or rewritten by the search engine. Google Panda’s updates were implemented about once a month for the first two years then Google said in March 2013 that the future updates will be integrated into the algorithm and thus will be less continuous and noticeable. On 18th July 2015, Google released a slow rollout of Panda v4.2.
The Google Penguin is a codename for a Google algorithm which was announced on 24th April 2015. The main motto of this update is to decrease the search engine rankings pf websites that do not meet the Google’s Webmaster Guidelines with the use of recently launches black-hat SEO techniques that are used in increasing the rank of a webpage artificially by manipulating the number of links related to that particular page. This method is generally defined as link schemes. Google has announced all the updates of the Penguin filter for public use as according to Google’s John Mueller.
According to the analysis of Google, Penguin affects about 3.1% of search questionnaires in English , about 3% in languages such as Chinese, German and Arabic and even high percentage in highly spammed languages. Google launched another Penguin update called Penguin 1.1 on May 25 2012. According to the head of webspam at Google, Matt Cutts, this update was hoped to be effective for more than 10% of English search queries. The main principle of this update was to dominate websites using manipulative methodologies to gain higher ranks. The objective per Google was to catch more spammers. Some websites lost search rankings on Google for particular keywords during the Penguin and Panda checking. Google particularly says that doorway pages that are only created to attract search engine traffic do not meet with their webmaster criteria. The so-called Page Layout Algorithm Update also called as the Top Heavy Update was released in January 2012 that targeted websites with the way many ads or way little content above the fold.
On October 5th, 2012, Penguin 3 was released that affected 0.3% of search queries. On May 22nd, 2013, Penguin 2.0 i.e. Penguin 4 was released that affected 2.3% of search queries. On October 4th, 2013, Penguin 5 i.e Penguin 2.1 was released which affected about 1% of search queries and is also the recent version of the Google Penguin Algorithm update. However, Penguin 3.0 might have been was released on 18th October 2014 but on 21st October Google’s Pierre Farr said that this was just an algorithm refresh but no any new signals were added in this version. Thus the strategy of this update is to show higher quality websites on the top rankings of the Google search results.