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Undoubtedly, by now you’ve heard that another Google algorithm updated was released, and it goes by the cute name “Penguin”. Who would have thought that an adorable, flightless penguin could have a damaging impact on some companies search engine rankings? Like many, you’re probably wondering what is Penguin exactly, how could it affect my website, and what can I do to counter its impact?

google penguinGoogle Penguin was officially released “into the wild” on April 24, 2012, after Google decided to start downranking websites that deliberately manipulated the search engines to gain higher positions on the search engine results (SERPs) page. Since that time there have been six updates, the most recent on October 21, 2014.  Those websites negatively affected were using techniques to achieve higher rankings, such as creating excessive backlinks, creating doorway pages, using too many ads, or too little above-the-fold content, amongst other factors.

It’s important to keep in mind that the overall objective of Penguin, and all Google algorithm updates, is to give priority and higher rankings to legitimate, high quality websites that have content that closely relates to the topic at hand. The principal goal is to make Google a more accurate search engine so that users are given relevant results they’re looking for.

Now that you understand the importance of this update, here are some great Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tips to help you prove to Google that you’re a legitimate, authentic company that has accurate, relevant information to share with your target audience. Consistently applying these tips should help increase your website’s ranking on the SERPs.

1. Be creative: Create unique and high quality content with keywords and share the heck out of it

Creating and sharing meaningful content, which contains targeted keywords, is the essence of humanizing the digital world, and this will undoubtedly contribute to the success of your online marketing initiatives. It’s a common misconception that blogging is the only way to share content; however, there are actually many great ways to distribute and syndicate your content. These include: sharing videos on YouTube, infographics, podcasts, PDFs, news releases and simply sharing information through any social media sites.

2. Be organized: Increase user experience on your company’s website

Architecture and navigation is also important when it comes to increasing your website’s rankings, as it influences how long they will browse your site. A user-friendly navigation system with well-organized and easy to find information helps the site’s visitors not only find what they are searching for, but it also encourages them to look in other areas.

3.  Be social: Create an online community and strengthen your company’s brand

In some cases, Google gives big brands an advantage of better SEO rankings because of the company’s consistency in syndicating relevant marketing messages throughout a diversity of online channels. You can make Google think you’re larger than you actually are by consistently being active on all your social media accounts. Most SEO companies will advise you to regularly update your Facebook, Twitter and Google+ profiles. However, adding LinkedIn and Pinterest to your social media mix will also help by giving your brand more social media “real estate”. The more digital space you take up around your brand, the bigger your company will appear.

If you’ve been negatively affected by Penguin don’t despair. By following these and other tips and techniques your website will soon start to recover from Penguin. If you’d like to turn this over to a professional SEO company, find one that is reputable and understands the importance of content marketing and the latest search engine updates.

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