Google Just Unleashed Its Penguin 2.0 Update

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Earlier this year in April, our good friend Pratik talked about the, then upcoming penguin update. It’s official, Google just released version 2 of Penguin.

The first update literally shook the internet. Webmasters had to re-invent themselves and embrace content marketing. Google is wise and is fully committed to their mission of making the search engines friendly and useful for the user.

Honestly, we’ve had ample time to prepare for this update, as Matt Cutts alluded to it many times. For those who are worried, allow me to soothe you a little bit by saying that it will only affect about 2.5% of the internet.

This update will be more intensive than version 1 of Penguin and is specifically targeting black hat spam. Spammers and black hat SEOs should be worried. If you’ve been focusing on quality content, the user, and haven’t participated in black hat techniques, you ‘need not fear’. 🙂

Cutts official statement:

We started rolling out the next generation of the Penguin webspam algorithm this afternoon (May 22, 2013), and the rollout is now complete. About 2.3% of English-US queries are affected to the degree that a regular user might notice. The change has also finished rolling out for other languages world-wide. The scope of Penguin varies by language, e.g. languages with more webspam will see more impact.

This is the fourth Penguin-related launch Google has done, but because this is an updated algorithm (not just a data refresh), we’ve been referring to this change as Penguin 2.0 internally. For more information on what SEOs should expect in the coming months, see the video that we recently released.

Let us know in your comments below what you think of this update and if you’ve seen the results of it yet.  We’d love examples!

Adam Morgan

Adam Morgan

Adam Morgan is a PPC expert, entrepreneur, blogger, and amiable guy. In his spare time, you can find him updating his own blog.
Adam Morgan
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  • Alan Smith

    It is i can see lots of variations in ranking

    • Sahil

      Not much impact if a site has devised a quality content strategy and is following it consistently, also their content should be focused on users and not search engines. Penguin has been good for the web. It is cleaning up the spam, more importantly making people avoid it.

  • umair

    I just checked my ranking. some sites are down and some sites are up. So, visited some websites and found your blog post.
    I think Google launched 2.0 update.

  • Himanshu

    Thanks Adam for the update and It’s good to see Google also confirming it.

  • Rishav

    I have seen fluctuation in ranking of keywords but mostly sites are still ranking well.

  • Queenie Lim

    I can see the changes already happening in Google Singapore.
    I am just afraid PPC will just cost more in future which will ultimately be too expensive to bid for a breakeven.

  • Sharaj

    One of my Youtube Video Moved Position #3 from #6! That means Social Media Pages are Still Rocks! But it’s getting more and more harder to bring a new website to page #1, even for low competitive keywords.

  • shital jethva

    i have seen drastic changes in our websites serp rankings

  • Mohnesh Kohli

    It updated 9 hours ago and what I observed more importance given to information site or blogs as compare to commercial sites. Social media account are ranking well now. more importance is give to domain authority

  • Steven Macdonald

    There is a lot less panic this time around compared to Penguin 1.0.

    There’s a lot of chatter on the black hat forums, as is to be expected but webmaster forums and SEOchat forums seem pretty quiet. We’ll most likely hear more stories later in the week.

  • keyword removed

    My sites got effected with the latest penguin 2.0 update. but one thing is clear with this update, Sites with planned link velocity and with regular content or page updates are ranked high. Authority Sites are ranking high for specific industries.

    Next 2 days we will have lot of discussion on this so..need to wait for some more time…:)

  • mitch

    Lol google is only good at tax avoiding.. and posting videos of nerdy middle aged people mocking small buisness becaouse they are bitter and sad indivduals but all i can do is luagh because this doesnt effect me in the slighest…

    If i was google i would stop coming across as this lets destroy everyone company and start focussing on their public image more of trying to help small buisness thrive… oh wait that probably wont ever happen because the people who run google are evidently bitter people who must have been bullied when they where younger and now want to get their own back or something.

    What annoys me though is that google mocks the seo community for trying to improve their business…….. and there whole system is dumb

    You website could have the answers to everything….. a way to cure every known disease. but say if google does not like your link profile nobody will ever know.

    Also just because a website has spam links pointing to it doesnt mean it is a rubbish website…. oh wait google doesnt have the technology to do this so rely on link profiles and what not.

  • Jimmy

    Hope this updates will make the web more cleaners and more useful for everyone.
    The age of producing high value content is now more powerful than the past few years.

    Thank Matt for making the change!

  • Manish Vats

    Right, We just watch video of Matt Cutts.

  • Kostas Kal

    Penguin is evil with black hat seo! I realized that old and over linked domains has problems, new sites are still ok.

  • Jarret

    I’m not sure why, but I actually noticed a huge drop in search traffic on May 4th. I couldn’t find any particular keywords that had fluctuated much, but my overall search volume was down about 50% (My site’s overall page views fluctuate from 300,000 monthly to 1/2 that lately). What’s interesting is that you could have set your watch to my search traffic for the last two years–despite the site doubling in size or more, the search traffic’s been exactly the same month after month until recently.

    Since then, it’s actually slowly gone back up, but not to where it had been previously for several months. I haven’t noticed anything over the past few days when this iteration of Penguin is supposed to have gone live.

  • Ajit Nayak

    hmmmmm… due to this Penguin 2.0 update, I lost most of my keywords from top pages. Surprised!! Can’t understand wats the issue. I am using all white hat techniques, but why I dropped??

    And can anyone please tell me details, whats NEW in Penguin 2.0 ??

  • Moe

    I do see a change, but it will get better in next few days.


  • Michelle

    The only thing Google seems to be good at nowadays is illegally avoiding paying their taxes. This latest Penguin update has done nothing but push spam sites even higher in the rankings and favored big brands. Needless to say, all my searches are now done through Bing, Yahoo and Ecosia 🙂

    As for my sites, they are all authority sites and, after months of adding quality content as suggested by Matt Cutts, nothing has changed. No fall no rise in Google search. But….I’m doing amazingly well from Bing and Yahoo 🙂

    And as for Penguin, it looks like it’s time to pay for backlinks. I never have done before, but those sites that have are still ranking high, so obviously Cutts is lying about them being penalized.

  • Junaid

    I have some different results, All of my keywords ranking in first 3 positions have been dropped down to second page for Google global. On the other hand they are still ranking first position for local search engine datacenter. It seems to be little hard to decide what to do.

    I was doing social bookmarking on high PR websites and guest blooging on high PR websites but still saw drop in ranking. I think we should onward only do guest blogging to improve the positions despite of doing any other link building like forums, social bookmarking, directories etc.

    Personally some times I feel Google Inc. is unable to decide what they should put forward for the search engine users, since I am feeling since they are doing panda, penguin kind algorithm changes there are no more qulaity results. There is one major reason behind it, they did not removed Last Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him video from Youtube.

    One thing is sure that Google Inc. will be no more top search engine in coming days.

  • Abeerah

    Yeah I can see lots of changes in SERP for one website, for which I mostly concentrate on content in link building, I mean mostly links was from guest post and used non-anchor text terminology but still unsuccessful, perhaps penguin still counts this websites previous links which was based on direct anchors and on low quality sites
    But I’m confused why Google not give priority to latest links which was of high quality content and on theme based websites 🙁
    Should I disavow those direct anchor text links?and then file reconsider request, Ahhhh, Again lots of efforts required

  • Simon Carver

    Hi, My client’s site got penalty from this update. I do not know the exact cause, I was creating backlinks from relevant and non-relevant Blogs only, but last week I did some bookmarking with blog-commenting.

    Now my client wants to know why we got the penalty!! Please give me some ideas on how to recover from this penalty? I am looking for the answer!!

    Please share the rules of the update!!

  • Jatin Sharma

    According to me it’s not that bad one like Panda update had impact on most websmasters it’s quite decent update.
    Exact match keywords and low authority link building, porn and sports websites had effected but nothing much changes every tactics are working as before but we just need to focus on quality link building instead of collecting bunch of low quality links from less authority websites, instead of anchor text go for the direct links to the resources available on your domain might helpful 🙂

    Post any effective way to collect links if you got some beautiful ways to do this

  • Lakhwinder

    Till now there is no change in my search rankings. Its may be my natural work or this update has less effect than Penguin 1.0

  • Alex

    This has got to stop. Google cannot continue to play God with the internet. People are working hard to ge their pages ranked using White Hat and they’re getting screwed. Something has to give. These updates throw entire business models out the window, and if you don’t have a business model you have confidence in that will work, you don’t have a business. The internet is becoming a Big Boys playground, where those with the money and influence will get ranked, while the little guy gets stepped on. I always viewed the internet as the Great Equalizer, where even a small entrepreneur could compete with the big outfits by simply putting up a better site. Now who knows what a better site is.

  • Allyson Steffey

    Recently, I have read one article on How to recover from Penguin 2.0. Here are some factors to consider when building links in the new, Penguin 2.0 environment.
    1) Link Value – Try to get links from trusted website.
    2) Link Velocity – Don’t try to get no. of links in short period of time. Velocity should be consistent.
    3) Anchor Text Link – Don’t try to get links on Exact-Match Anchor Text. Try to get links on long tail phrases.
    4) Link Diversity – Try to generate links from variety of authority website. Natural references will definitely help to get ranking back.
    5) Link Relevancy – Try to avoid links from completely irrelevant sites can hurt a site’s rankings. Link relevancy plays big role in link quality.
    6) Avoid Spam – Don’t try to use spam activity to generate links.
    Hope, it will help you to get your ranking back.

    • Bob

      Nice rules to Penguin 2.0.
      But try to do a little research to the sites at the top SERP, post Penguin 2.0, and you’ll find that they are the true violator of all those 6 rules!
      Penguin 2.0 just love fresh contents, no matter it was using low quality backlink.
      Perhaps it is time for us to wear our black hat

  • Simon Carver

    Thanks for giving me the answer, Yes I used more anchor text links rather than non anchor text.
    Would please tell the ratio of anchor link and non-anchor link? I am waiting for the help. Also let me know how I can keep the link building process more natural?

    Thanks in advance

  • Subrat

    Can we recover our drop down keywords from penguin 2 update?