Google Panda… It upset a lot of marketers last year although many of us were already towing the line following the somewhat more vicious Penguin update of 2013. Sigh… bad memories… So what is Panda and what about writing content in a post Panda world? Let me explain.
What is Google Panda?
Google’s latest Panda update 4.1 happened in September 2014. The focus of Panda 4.1 was on content and it addressed the online need to rank content based on quality and value. Whilst webmasters panicked over Penguin due to its SEO and link changes, many content writers panicked over Panda.
What Is Panda Happy Content?
Panda happy content is basically fresh, original and natural content which fits with your website and pleases the reader. For example, previously many writers (myself included) believed that it was necessary to add keywords (keyword stuffing) within an article to enhance SEO. We also believed that using certain words, even when they were irrelevant to the site, would enhance its rankings. We also included links, perhaps to affiliate sites or product pages which dominated the page instead of good quality content. Panda also tightened up on plagiarised content and content which had been spun. Word spinning is a trick used by some content writers in which they take another writer’s article and use a word spinning tool to regenerate it without breaking Google rules. Panda is smart enough to recognise word spinning which is great news for writers who always wrote their content from scratch.
What Can’t You Do?
- Don’t copy or spin another person’s content
- Ensure your articles and content are relevant to your site
- Include keywords but don’t overstuff
- Minimise links to other sites
- Don’t use deceptive titles on articles
- Don’t publish loads of weak articles
What Can You Do?
- Hire good quality content writers
- Write less but make it good
- Use H1 and H2 tags, italics and bold to emphasise content
- Include keywords in a meaningful and natural way
- Credit the source of any quotes you use with a link
Every year Google makes between 500-600 algorithm changes and Panda is just one of them. To me Panda is just common sense and has really helped to sort the writers from the spinners.
What do you think about Panda? Tweet me at @charli_says