Google’s man in charge of stopping SEO spamming, Matt Cutts, confirmed that the changes in many people’s web rankings were not the result of a new Penguin update. In addition, he confirmed that there was a major penguin update coming out in the next two or three weeks. The odd thing is he said it was going to be penguin 2.0 which will be released. By my count it should actually be penguin 4.0. Last October’s major update was known as penguin 3.0, so there is quite a bit of confusion in many SEO circles.
Whatever Google decides to call next week’s update, that still leaves a lot of people wondering what happened to their search rankings late last week. Most people think it was just a smaller, incremental change (Penguin 1.9, or 3.9, or whatever) but there hasn’t been any confirmation that there was any change at all from Google.
The fact is, however, there were too many people noticing too much of a change in their rankings to believe that it was just the normal Google dance. Whatever you want to call it, Google did make some sort of change last week that got everyone moving around. The big question, however, is what will the upcoming ‘Penguin 2.0’ look like. If the changes last week were not even acknowledged by Google than one could expect that the upcoming adjustments will be quite a bit more impactful.
There is little doubt that millions of website owners around the world will be keeping a close eye on their rankings over the next several weeks to see if they will be affected by this upcoming change. There has not been any reliable rumors about what types of things this change will be impacting either, so that will make many people quite nervous as they wait and wonder how this will impact their earnings.
As with all updates to Google’s search algorithms, however, if you stick to only legitimate SEO practices you should have nothing to worry about. What are your thoughts about the update from last week? Were any of your sites impacted? How about the ‘Penguin 2.0’ change which is coming up, are you nervous?