Google’s Next Penguin Update to Happen Within “Weeks”

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Google’s Webmaster Trends Analyst, Gary Illyes, stated on Twitter today the next Penguin update is due to roll out within weeks. At the very latest, it should launch by the end of this quarter.

This is the closest thing to a launch date we’ve heard out of the Google camp with respect to the next Penguin update. While reluctant to give an exact time frame, Illyes has at least given an estimate to hold over questioning webmasters and SEOs.

It has been over a year since Google officially rolled out an update to its link spam algorithm. Penguin 3.0 was rolled out in October 2014, which was technically just a “refresh” that affected less than 1% of US English search queries.

What’s different between an algorithm ‘refresh’ and an algorithm ‘update’ is that an update does not add any additional signals to the algorithm. A refresh serves to demote sites that have newly discovered spam signals that weren’t present at the time of the previous update. A refresh also serves to help sites that have corrected their spam issues since the last update.

Prior to that, Penguin 2.1 occurred on October 2013, which was said to be an improvement on Penguin 2.0 launched in May 2013. Penguin 2.0 was confirmed by Google to contain new spam-fighting technology, which was the last time we heard the search giant confirm adding new signals to the algorithm.

What will Google have in store for us this time? Details are sparse, and if history is anything to go by we likely won’t have our questions answered until the update finally rolls out.

Featured Image Credit: GongTo / Shutterstock.com

Matt Southern

Matt Southern

Lead News Writer
Matt Southern is the lead news writer at Search Engine Journal. His passion for helping people in all aspects of online marketing flows through in the expert industry coverage he provides.
Matt Southern
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  • http://www.posterguy.in Akshay Chugh

    Will it affect websites which are receiving spam traffic as well? Because my website is getting a lot and I can’t help it. I just apply a simple filter in GA to filter the results but cannot stop them from coming to my website. Or they simply just show on GA? Confused!

    • http://www.simplycompelling.com/blog/ Simply Compelling

      It depends on how and why that spam traffic is taking place. If you are getting unwanted referrals and have disavowed any spam backlinks with the google disavow tool, you should be fine. If your links are spammed all over the web, then penguin is aimed at cracking down on those sort of black hat practices. It sounds like you are getting ghost visits from bots like semalt and buttonsforwebsite, if that is the case, I’m guessing you’ll be fine as those aren’t real visits and there aren’t any backlinks.

      • http://www.posterguy.in Akshay Chugh

        I’am getting unwanted referrals, that’s the main problem. I think I should be fine with the next update. Thanks for the help. Great post (:

      • http://www.imobdevtech.com/ Jonny Smith

        Yes Akshay, I have same issue and I think my website will also positive effect in next update. Good job!!

      • http://www.moxiedot.com Kelsey Jones

        I hate referral spam too! one of the worst things out there IMO. We had Shane Jones do an article on it that might help: https://www.searchenginejournal.com/referrer-spam-get-rid/135855/

  • http://hbogameofthronesseason6.com/ Rajesh Jhamb

    Time to Disavow backlinks (low quality one)

    • CarolinaClover.com

      Yes!

  • http://www.bmcinternetmarketing.nl/ BMCInternetMarketing

    Well Let’s hope they finally reward White Head SEO!

    Because black hat has been rewarded quite some time. Also I think Google should go further than just penaltylize a domain in case of black hat behaviour instead they should punish on a company level.

    There are markets where competitors do not care if a domain gets punished or banned by Google because they have multiple domains lined up waiting to replace the old ones they trashed….

    • CarolinaClover.com

      Our thoughts exactly!

  • Jason

    This is supposed to be a live update too. Meaning now you can recover from penguin within weeks. This is all good news for people fearful of waiting a whole year to recover. Ive been through one penguin with one of my main eCommerce sites. i waited it out and rankings came back. This will also be good news for anyone worried about negative SEO. It will make negative SEO obsolete in my opinion and is likely one of the major reasons google is doing a live penguin rollout

  • Divyanshu Verma

    Hi Matt
    I know many people out there are waiting for penguin update, especially those where website were hit by last Penguin and they worked on fixes and now want to see rise in traffic.
    But can you please let us know the source where Gary mentioned about the next roll out in this quarter.
    Sorry but the link you provided in the beginning of this post “Gary Illyes, stated on Twitter” is not working i guess and when i did little more research and cross checked the sources what i found is Gary saying “@mrjamiedodd dunno. I’ll ask the guys”

    Well am not really sure, but little confusion here. we would like to know the more sources for this news if any!!

    I try to figure out this and update if i found anything else related to this.

  • Siri Innovations

    Thank you for sharing this update. Every time this update was changing we hope by this update the traffic will increase.

  • http://www.thesagenext.com/cloud/quickbooks-hosting.html Alice Wright

    This news of google penguin update will never be feared those who use white hat seo technique. So lets comes it and get some good result.

  • https://www.getfoundfast.com/ kenny marks

    Well Hopefully it comes through this time. I’m guessing it won’t though.

  • Michael Monaghan

    As usual, wait until after the hit. Anything prior is just conjecture.

  • CarolinaClover.com

    I had to check the date on this post because I couldn’t believe that Penguin is back in 2016. I sure hope the Goo Algo takes it easier on website owners doing it by the book and goes after the seedy linkers of nasty content we’ve had to disavow in Webmaster this time around!

  • http://www.seoexpertpage.com/ AL Gomez

    Google penguin update is never be alarming to those who follow Google linkbuilding guideliness. Goodluck!!

  • http://www.sonyz6xperia.com/ Sony Xperia z6

    thanks for such news and was really looking for next penguin update. Keep updating us.

  • http://www.pmmodi.in Ravinder Dande

    That mean we wil have more accurate result on google.

  • Subbareddy

    Google Penguin Update

    So….the wait will come to an end soon!!

    The much awaited Penguin update is due to roll out within weeks!! The news is officially confirmed by Google Webmaster Trends Analyst, Gary Illyes through a Tweet. At the very latest, the update should roll out by the end of this quarter.

    While Illyes couldn’t proclaim the exact date of roll out, webmasters now have an idea about the release to prepare themselves well. Penguin algorithm is one of the biggest algorithms of Google which is the reason why everybody is keen to know the changes coming up in the update this time.

    Launched in October 2014, Penguin 3.0 (the last update) was technically just a “refresh” and caused a downfall to less than 1% of US English search queries. Penguin updates are directed to give a fall in the search ranking of those websites found violating the Google’s Webmaster Guidelines by using black-hat SEO techniques.

    Speculations are still high about what Google will have in store for us this time, hope the results after the roll out doesn’t harm the websites much!!! So get ready for this update and start finding ways to deal with the upcoming Penguine update.