Getting your website a good ranking on Google is a big challenge in itself. Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the first thing that comes to mind when one thinks about Google rankings. Lately, Google has updated its algorithm many times and this has created a lot of confusion among various webmasters. One of the most confusing and frequently-asked questions is- What is Google Panda?
What is Google Panda?
Google has a very complicated set of algorithms that keeps an eye on the rankings of the numerous websites out there. These algorithms have given a headache to all website owners at some point in time and thus, it is absolutely necessary to know them well. There are many parts of an algorithm that can influence the website rankings. Google Panda, Google Hummingbird, and Google Penguin are three such parts. So, to answer the question “What is Google Panda”, it is that part of Google’s algorithm that is specifically concerned with the quality of content on a website. On the other hand, Google Hummingbird handles the conversational type of search queries while Google Penguin takes care of the quality of links.
Google Panda was first released in the year 2011 with the aim of bringing down the low-quality websites in terms of content and making the high-quality websites go up higher on the ranking charts. This update was named so because of the name of a Google engineer Navneet Panda. He was responsible for developing the technology that made this update possible. Till April 2011, many updates were rolled out to give the best shape to Panda and as a result, about 12 percent of the search results saw a drastic change. Many social media and news websites observed a sudden rise in their rankings while many advertisement-filled websites saw a huge dip in their ranks. There was a lot of controversy surrounding this new update in Google’s algorithm. Many websites with completely copied content got the better of it but eventually, this was a safe gamble from Google’s side.
How does Panda actually work?
Just like any other search engine, Google wants to provide the best services to its users and it does this job by releasing regular updates to its algorithm. This keeps the lazy webmasters on their toes and stops them from being too evil. Google Panda aims at punishing the websites that has a history of bad user experience while improving the ranks of websites with above par user experience. It is a type of heuristic algorithm. In layman’s words, Panda works by looking at a large number of data and then finding some specific solution to every question asked.
The best thing about Panda is that it eliminated the time-taking and unimportant calculations and hence giving out the most accurate results. Google simply created a survey that would rate websites as ‘Low Quality’ and ‘High Quality’. The ones that were labeled low quality dipped down in terms of ranking and vice versa. The content of a website must be able to match the query sent out by Google, otherwise the website will get penalized. The overall Panda score of a website is calculated on the basis of every individual page. So, if the number of negative pages is high on your website, you are likely to get a low Panda score.
Tips to deal in the best way with Panda
Okay, Google Panda sure sounds like a huge deal even today. It created a new sense of horror among many webmasters but if you actually think about it, Panda is not your enemy. If you have worked in building your website and the content that you have in it is of the best quality, you have nothing to fear. Google is simply concerned about encouraging good quality content and that is all you must try to achieve. Here are some tips to help you deal with Google Panda in the best way possible-
- Take some time off and check out every single post that has been published on your website. You need to make sure that you have nothing but the best quality content out there. Weed out all the auto-generated content. In order to improve your rankings, you must also stop the low-quality content from crawling and indexing. The content must be completely unique and should not have been copied from somewhere else.
- Once you have taken out all the bad content, make sure that all the new posts that go online from hereon are supremely high in quality. Your focus must be on generating unique content that shares your opinion about the topic and not something copied from some other website. This is absolutely necessary if you want to keep your website from getting blacklisted.
- The Panda update gives a lot of thought into two factors- trust and authority. Everything from the links in a particular article to your tweets can be held accountable without your knowledge. Whatever information you provide on your website, it must be trustworthy. The content must be such that people want to share it with their friends which, in turn, will give your website a good authority.
- Filling up your website with heaps of advertisements is not actually advisable if you want to stay on the good side of Panda. The number of ads per page must not hinder the user’s purpose. Ads are not such a bad thing as long as you guarantee a good visual experience for your users and your website has a good loading speed.
- Whenever you see a sudden and drastic change in the number of views in your posts, it is an indication that Panda is here for you. In such a case, you can use Google Analytics to check out the search parameters and find out if it indeed is Panda. Keep track of all Panda updates and if your rankings have suffered severely, do not shy away from asking Google to restore them right away!