Google Penguin 4.0 Algorithm Update is Live in Real Time


Dmytro Spilka

According to MozCast algorithm weather report, the last couple of weeks were quite stormy.

MozCast Google Algorithm Updates

People saw huge drops and gains in rankings. However, the algo updates were not officially confirmed by Google until today (23rd September).

It has been almost 2 years since the latest Penguin update in October 2014. Finally, Google has now rolled out the new Penguin algorithm update, which SEOs and Online Marketers have named to be “Penguin 4.0”. The update has been confirmed on the official Google Webmaster Central Blog.

What is Penguin?

Penguin algorithm was first launched in April 2012, and is one of more than 200 signals that Google uses to determine ranking positions. The primary goal of Penguin is to fight spammy websites that try to manipulate search results by buying links, practising low-quality link building strategies (e.g. excessive blog comments) and participating in link exchange programs.

Historical Penguin Updates:

Penguin 1.0 – April 24, 2012
Penguin 1.1 – May 26, 2012
Penguin 1.2 – October 5, 2012
Penguin 2.0 – May 22, 2013
Penguin 2.1 – Oct. 4, 2013
Penguin 3.0 – October 17, 2014
Penguin 4.0 – September 23, 2016

Penguin 4.0 is now real-time.

The latest Penguin update becomes real-time. This means that if you have been hit by Penguin and have cleaned all the “mess”, you won’t have to wait for ages for Google to reconsider your rankings. Penguin will now refresh its data as soon as Google recrawls and reindexes the page.

An exact quote from Google’s Blog:

“With this change, Penguin’s data is refreshed in real time, so changes will be visible much faster, typically taking effect shortly after we recrawl and reindex a page.”

As the new update will now work in real time, Google will no longer comment on future Penguin updates and refreshes.

Penguin is now more “granular”.

In the past, if the site was acting spammy, Penguin would impact the whole website as opposed to individual pages. As we understand from Google’s statement, the new Penguin update is likely to affect certain parts and pages of the site that are sending spam signals, as opposed to the whole website.

An exact quote from Google’s Blog:

“Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site.”

Let’s all hope this goes well 🙂

Dmytro Spilka

Head Wizard

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