Working in online retail marketing for over ten years we have to stay ahead of any changes in search mechanics. Consequently, we’ve been recently approached by a website questioning how they’d lost a large volume of natural traffic and their ranking overnight.
We were able to advise the company on the reasons why and let them understand exactly how to rectify the problem. We therefore wanted to share our insights with you on the latest updates to Google algorithms.
If you’d like to find out more about how we can help with your site rankings and increase online orders, or reverse any drops in natural rankings and traffic, then get in touch so we can give you an audit of current online marketing activity.
Background on Google Panda
The Panda algorithm was first introduced by Google in February 2011, with the intention of penalising sites with low quality, thin content, and in their place, ranking sites with high quality useful content. Panda is a manual algorithm, so instead of updating continually, Google make tweaks to the algorithm and roll them out at intervals.
The nature of the Panda algorithm means that if even a portion of content is deemed low quality, it can pull rankings for all pages in your site down
By checking our internal records of all Google algorithm updates and cross referencing with the site’s analytics, we identified that the site had fallen victim to the Panda 3.4 update on March 23rd.
We analysed “before and after” Google traffic levels around the penalty date to determine content that had gained and lost traffic.
We found that whilst some generic, boilerplate content had been impacted severely (such as category pages), unique content such as blogs and articles had benefitted.
- We were able to rewrite unique, quality content for dozens of category pages.
- We blocked low quality content from being indexed in the short term, whilst consequentially having low impact on traffic levels.
- We carried out a site review and made recommendations to make the site and page templates more optimal.
- Google’s Panda 3.8 update occurred on 25th June
- Upon the update, natural traffic increased 112% following the algorithm update
- The site regained over 70 first page rankings and improved visibility for 210 keywords
Have you been hit by a Google algorithm update and need assistance to turn your fortunes around? We can help, so please get in touch with Mark Curtis on (0113) 2262202.