Google's New Over-Optimization Penalty: Is Your Website at Risk?

CARLSBAD, Calif., May 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — SEO Inc., a industry leading San Diego SEO company with over 19 years of history, is releasing industry insight on the Google Penguin update, otherwise known as the Web spam Update or Over-Optimization Penalty.

The Google Web spam Update or Penguin update went live on Tuesday, April 24. According to Google, it is an update intended to decrease rankings for sites that they believe are "violating their existing quality guidelines."

Google has stated that it only affects 3.1% of queries in English. However, many industry speculators believe it could have an impact on as much of 5% of websites.

"We are happy with the concept of the Penguin update. But it is still too early to fully endorse it without more data on the winners and losers. That being said, according to Google the algorithm can now catch web spam that was previously slipping through the cracks and we of course strongly agree that quality sites should have better rankings," said Chantal Guillani, Director of SEO Consulting & Social at SEO Inc.

This is an important update for search engine optimization companies. Google recently released a vague blog on this topic. In the post they mentioned the following items.

  • Earlier in the year there was a reduction in rankings for sites that don't make much content available above the fold.
  • Sites that stuff content with keywords will be negatively affected by this change.
  • Sites that add text links in irrelevant content will be negatively affected by this change.
  • Sites that spin content will be negatively affected by this change.

"These practices have always been black hat, which is why SEO Inc. does not engage in them. The only real change is that Google is now taking a more aggressive approach to penalizing these 'over-optimized' websites," commented Lincoln.

There have already been some big gains and massive losses in this algorithm change. Some sites have seen traffic increases up to 30% while others have lost over 70% of their traffic.

"The spammy websites are getting hit very hard at this point. If they were keyword stuffing or spinning content, they really had it coming anyway. With them out of the picture this makes room for the quality sites higher in the search results. These sites should see great traffic increases. Sites hurt by the update will need to make significant changes to get back that traffic," said Guillani.

Learn more about the Google Over-Optimization Penalty (Penguin Update) to find out if your website is at risk.

About Search Engine Optimization Inc.:

Search Engine Optimization Inc. is an integrated internet marketing and social media company that specializes in achieving high rankings for their clients on the Internet's major search engines.