Are You Affected by Penguin 2.0?

You Vs The Google Penguin – Round 2!

Google’s cute and cuddly algorithm mascots are back in action, this time with the second full iteration of Penguin making the rounds, devastating web traffic for sites that took too many shortcuts to achieve their rankings.

Whether this sounds familiar or you are just concerned about future rankings, it’s important to understand WHAT Penguin 2.0 was designed to do, and more importantly WHY it is currently affecting your site.

google penguin


What Changed?

As usual, we don’t know exactly what changed, but we do know that Penguin 2.0 affected more than 2.3% of all English-language sites, and some people saw huge decreases in traffic.

Here are some of the things that probably changed and why they matter:


  • Thinning of Clusters – If you ranked for multiple spots on Page 1, that’s been changed. Google wants diversity on Page 1 where possible.
  • Problem Phrases – Big spam targets like “pay day loans”, “hair loss treatment”, “make money online”, etc. were all targeted for spam techniques. Yes, that means us.
  • Link Value – Low quality links are being singled out more and more. BUT, there is a catch. A site with only high quality links are now being seen as unnatural as well. A normal site gets some bad links….just not 10,000 of them.
  • Link Velocity – Pick up 5,000 links in three days and you’ll get sandboxed. Google has always ignored excess links – now more than ever.
  • Anchor Text – Even more than before, keyword matches in anchor text are being seen as spam. Don’t use exact matches in anchor text any more where possible.
  • Relevancy – When you get a link, it needs to be related to your site and your industry. Those sites with lots of unrelated links are seeing dings.


This is a small list and none of it is mind blowing compared to past Penguin updates (this is the fourth after all), but it is all much tighter and stricter than we’ve seen in recent years.


How to Avoid Penguin 2.0 Problems

Here’s what most of you are looking for – the magic rulebook for not getting dinged by Penguin 2.0 or any of the other future algorithm updates Google has planned.

As you know if you spend any time on this site at all, I’m not a fan of blackhat or even grayhat tactics, so if you’re looking for stuff to “cheat” the new algorithm, I’m not your guy. My theory is this: if you cheat, you’ll get caught. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but someday Google will catch up and you’ll lose your ranking (and your revenue).

It makes more sense to build a GOOD foundation today that won’t go anywhere and is more or less algorithm-proof. Here’s how you do it:


  • Create Amazing Content – This is the first and in many cases only thing you should be doing. Determine who your audience is, target their needs, and create amazing content they will be interested in. Do all of that, and your site will perform better.
  • Create Lynchpin Content – Articles are great, but they are limited in their link building power. You need lynchpins like eBooks, podcasts, and webinars that will drive HUGE chunks of backlinks from natural sources.
  • Get Social – Don’t cheat with social media! This is a huge area that Google is going to tighten down on in the future. Paying for Likes will get your site dinged – I guarantee it. But you can build an audience and share with them. 100 natural likes or tweets on an article is HUGE.
  • Stop SEO and Start Marketing – Marketing is all about creating trust, building authority and promoting content to the right audience. If you focus first on content, not link building, you’ll do well.

idiotic smileimage owned by LazyCrazy

The bottom line is this – Google is not interested in punishing people for every little issue. They want to reward those who offer value to their readers and solve problems, ending search. Do this and your site will thrive.

Fancy working alongside myself and a whole host of Internet Business Entrepreneurs who make money for fun? Check this out…

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11 Responses to Are You Affected by Penguin 2.0?

  1. Keira says:

    Hi there, the whole thing is going sound here and
    ofcourse every one is sharing facts, that’s genuinely good, keep up writing.

    Also visit my web blog :: google keyword question tool, Keira,

  2. Ferguson says:

    So it sounds like Google is planning to wrap up SEO chapter near future and will project bright light upon social media!! That's truly amazing. I think social media network is the trusted and natural way to get real traffic and reponses as well. I've already shifted my website marketing works over social media and it's satifying to see good response after good marketing. Thanks.

    • Gareth Morgan says:


      I don’t think Google will ever ‘wrap up’ SEO but I certainly think the direction we’re moving in is the right one. It’s far more fair to people who are genuinely creating great content.

  3. Gary says:

    I agree with you 100%. People in the SEO work are not taking social signals serious enough. Right now I think that is the number two factor after backlinks. You might as well get a head of the game while you still can. I do not like using Google+ at all. However, I am still using it for backlinks because I know how much Google loves that. Thanks for the tips. 

    • Gareth Morgan says:


      Thanks for your reply. It’s always nice to read well thought, constructive comments. Absolutely nothing wrong with backlinks, especially if they’re coming from a good source. it’s even ok to have a few crappy backlinks because that will make your site seem natural.

      • Gary says:

        Yeah, right you are. Diversity is key too. It is important to have as many different kinds of backlinks as possible. Even some high PR profile links from high authority websites are still good. Twitter, youtube and facebook come to mind. They are not even dofollow but they are always the first links I create. Nofollow can be just as important. 

        • Gareth Morgan says:

          I hear you, Gary. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google+ are four of my favourite places to get backlinks. I’m starting to use LindkeIn a bit more now as well.

          I’m interested in what it is you do. What’s your background, how long have you been in online business?

          • Gary says:

            I have been building websites since I was in highschool. I graduated in 2005. So I would guess 2003-2004 or so. My teacher liked my work so much that he got me a job at a digital print place that made brochures, business cards, etc. I was their web design side of the business. 

            Then not to long after that I started to learn how to make money from these websites. And I have been hooked ever since. 

            How about you? Other than what is on your About page, of course?

          • Gareth Morgan says:

            Man, that’s really cool! I wish I had gotten involved with building websites etc a lot earlier than I did. I’ve always loved using the internet but spent most of my time in movie chat rooms! It was only about 3 and a half years ago that I started thinking about trying to make money by leveraging the power of the internet. I was spending so much time online that it just made sense. Basically, my ‘About Me’ does describe my journey. I’ve been with learning and earning with The Six Figure Mentors since they began back in August 2010. 

            My mission is to position myself as an expert in my field, who people come to for help. And make money from it, of course. I’m no saint! :-)   

  4. Gugulethu says:

    Absolutely true G. search engines just want to offer the best results for their users so if you provide value and help solve a specific problem then seach engines will reward you by ranking your pages high. Google just simply updates their stuff to make it better then people hype it up and scare people so that they can rip some money out of it, so be careful guys.

    Great Tips, Thnx!! Google is not interested in punishing people, Period!

    • Gareth Morgan says:

      Hey G,

      I really do believe that Google aren’t interested in punishing people for no reason! Sure, they make mistakes because they’re run by humans but there’s nothing more frustrating than searching for something and realising the top results are full of crap. People with these awful one page websites with over stuffed keywords and black hat backlinks don’t deserve to be making any money at all!

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