Google Rolls Out Panda 4.0 May 20, 2014

Google 4.0 rolloutMatt Cutts from Google has announced the release of a new version of their Google Panda algorithm, version 4.0. This announcement was made through a post on Google+ as well as from Google’s Matt Cutts on Twitter. According to the announcement, there will be a slow rollout of the update that will go on for about a week or so before all the changes have been effected. Google Panda penalizes sites with poor or shallow content from getting high rankings on its search engine.

Ever since 2012 when Google started their regular monthly updates there have been no major announcements on any improvement or changes to the Panda algorithm. The fact that they have done it this time must mean that this is a bigger update.

The Panda 4.0 has to be a major update to the last algorithm as opposed to just a data refresh as was the case with the monthly rolling updates. This marks a significant adjustment to how Panda identifies and gives scores to sites and their content.

Sources in Google suggest that this is a kinder Panda algorithm. This update also gives a suggestion of the direction that Google will be taking with the future adjustments. Those sites damned by the previous algorithm may have the chance to rise from the ashes. While it may be advantageous to some, this may not necessarily be the case for all. Other sites may experience penalties from this new version. The effect this adjustment has on such sites may be visible in few days to come. Sites that experience major changes to their traffic numbers may be as a result of the latest update.

Below are the previous confirmed Panda updates. We have taken the liberty of naming them according to the order in which they have happened with the major changes also called out with their AKA names:

Panda Update 1, AKA
Panda 1.0, 02/24/2011
Panda Update 2, AKA
Panda 2.0, 04/11/2011
Panda Update 3, 05/10/2011
Panda Update 4, 06/16/2011
Panda Update 5, 07/23/2011
Panda Update 6, 08/12/2011
Panda Update 7, 09/28/2011
Panda Update 8 AKA
Panda 3.0, 10/19/2011
Panda Update 9, 11/18/2011
Panda Update 10, 01/18/2012
Panda Update 11, 02/27/2012
Panda Update 12, 03/23/2012
Panda Update 13, 04/19/2012
Panda Update 14, 04/27/2012
Panda Update 15, 06/9/2012
Panda Update 16, 06/25/2012
Panda Update 17, 07/24/2012
Panda Update 18, 08/20/2012
Panda Update 19, 09/18/2012
Panda Update 20 , 09/27/2012
Panda Update 21, 11/5/2012
Panda Update 22, 11/21/2012
Panda Update 23, 12/21/2012
Panda Update 24, 01/22/2013
Panda Update 25, 03/15/2013
Panda Update 26 AKA
Panda 4.0, May 20, 2014
Panda Update 27 AKA
Panda 4.1, Sept. 25, 2014

As you can see most of the updates were back in 2012 with last year having very few updates. While there may have been unannounced releases, this list only includes those that have been confirmed by Google.  To see how your site can get to page 1 of Google, contact us today or call Jeff at 678-520-9925

Google Panda Update 4.1: What to Expect

Google Panda 4.1 UpdateWith the many changes to Google’s algorithms, it can be hard for website owners to keep track of all the changes. The new release of Google Panda 4.1 is aimed to help smaller websites as discussed at Search Engine Roundtable. Google began rolling out the changes at the end of September 2014, and will have an impact on 3 to 5% of search queries. Since the release of Google Panda in 2011, there have been 26 confirmed updates and refreshes, and now this is the 27th update.  Panda 4.0 was rolled out earlier this year.

What to Expect from Google Panda Update 4.1

The new version of Panda will continue the same tradition of the previous version of Panda but will be more effective at targeting low-quality content. Google added new signals to their algorithm that will point out low quality, but they have not made these signals known to the public. This update proves beneficial to those websites with content that already proves to be high-quality, but puts websites full of low-quality content in danger.

Pierre Far explained that the Google Panda update should help small to medium sized businesses that already take the time to prioritize the content on their website. He believes they will be rewarded with the highest rankings of search queries because of the Panda update. Many business owners, however, fear that the update could have a negative impact on them instead. If any of Google’s new signals target high-quality content as low-quality content, business owners could notice a significant drop in their rankings even if they are doing everything right.

It is believed that content-based sites and download portals are the types of sites that will receive the highest rankings. The reasoning for this is because they are often updated with high-quality information, and they are getting an extra boost in favoritism when it comes to Panda’s new signal codes. The types of websites that might suffer the most include lyric, gaming, and medical sites. This is because these sites often have thin, repeated, or aggregated content. This is what Google often translates as low-quality work. Gaming sites don’t feature as much content as content-based websites; lyrics websites don’t feature as much content as other websites, and medical websites are often full of copied content from other sites.

Has Panda 4.1 Effected Your Website?

If your website has already been negatively impacted by Panda 4.1, there are ways in which you can recover from it. It’s important to look at the existing content on your website. Compare your current content to the content on your competitor’s website who are ranking higher than you are. Take note of their strategies, but don’t copy them. Come up with your own effective solution for getting better rankings. It’s also necessary for you to delete any duplicate and thin content displayed on your website. Plagiarism and content syndication needs to be completely removed. If your content is just basic rewrites of previous articles, remove them and replace them with 100-percent original articles.

The new Panda 4.1 update doesn’t have to hurt you. It can have a positive impact on your website if you take the time to add high-quality content to your site. By assessing your current site and content, you can develop effective strategies to make the changes to begin to see higher rankings. It’s important to refine your current content strategy and post content on your site that is unique, high-quality, and valuable to your readers. Not only will these changes help you now, but they’ll also help you in the future for whenever Google decides to roll out another Panda update.

Need help with your organic search results, contact Jeff at 678-520-9925 or use our Contact Us for or email jeff at