Latest News on Panda: After some sites have been seeing ranking fluctuations, speculation is starting to arise about a potential new Panda update from Google. We’re intrigued as to what a new panda update could mean for small businesses and content marketers.
What is the Panda update?
The original Panda update happened in February 2011, having an affect on around 12% of searches. It was then updated on a monthly basis, until March 2013 when Google added Panda’s functionality to their core algorithm.
Panda was originally designed to:
- Identify what factors define a ‘good’ page and a ‘bad’ page in terms of both usefulness and user experience
- Determine what this looks like across a website and decide which sites are ‘good’ and ‘bad’
- Prevent sites that have poor quality content from ranking high within the Google search results
It seems that the update will be less of a quality penalization (which we have previously seen) and more of a quality assessment, where Google is re-assessing what it sees as good and bad ranking factors and encouraging sites to up the quality of the content on their site, it is expected that Google will:
What does this mean for businesses marketing activities?
- Attribute more ranking power to detailed content
- Attribute more ranking power to universally relevant content
The new update highlights the need for truly valuable content, that is useful, relevant and engaging for the target audience. Now is the time to really focus on and invest in creating content that is on the next level.
There are two top level actions you can be making as a marketing manager in your business:
- When creating new content, focus on making sure that it is relevant, valuable and engaging to your target audience, but most importantly, highly detailed!
- Revisit old content to improve its value to the target audience using the same guidelines mentioned above.
To find out more about the Google Panda update, how to create great marketing content and the future of online content marketing, visit the full article on Impression Digital’s Blog.
The Panda update will affect a wide range of business types, it’s not just content aggregators that are going to be affected by the update; consider how the update may impact your business and industry. Are you selling a service? Ensure that your services are well represented throughout your site with well written service descriptions and structured supporting content. Are you selling a product? Think about your product pages, are they well written? Product descriptions should be unique to your site and have strong levels of information, if they don’t, then you may see drops in rankings.
After speaking with a contact at Google, we’ve learned that they’ve recognized, that digital marketers in general don’t have longer term content plans, only one hit wonder ideas that don’t actually build on a wider digital marketing strategy. Google want online marketing to be an even more integrated part of a company's marketing function, where online marketers and SEO’s produce proficient marketing strategies, with content that is highly detailed and relevant to their sites audiences and target market.
We believe that Google’s strong focus on content is going to continue well into the future. If the search giant is going to retain their very large market share, then they need to continue to provide the highest quality search results. We strongly recommend that any business invests in an effective online marketing strategy, regardless of algorithm updates.
Examples of great content:
Its far easier to talk about “great content” than it is to actually execute it. But what exactly does “great content” really mean? Great online content underpins digital marketing success. Whether you’re online strategy revolves around gaining links, improving rankings or even building brand awareness and online presence… a strong online content strategy can be fundamental in helping you achieve these and more. Below is an example of what ‘great content’ looks like.
Akita, an IT support company based in Kent, England has recently launched a great content piece. The Akita Cloud Business Guide is a helpful hub, which is an extension to the Akita website. It contains guides for email, accounting, project management, storage and security cloud solutions that businesses can use to make processes more efficient.
But what makes the Akita Cloud Business Guide a good piece of content creation? They’ve got content on the guide that is written by companies that are experts in the various cloud computing fields, such as Big Red Cloud. This means that the content on the hub has been endorsed by professionals and is therefore highly relevant and accurate.
There are comments sections below each of the cloud articles, meaning that the readers and users of the hub are able to ask questions and give feedback, allowing Akita to interact with their audience.
Cloud solutions is a quickly growing topic of interest in the world of business and IT at the minute, so Akita have been clever in selecting this as the topic for a piece of content. The images are all relevant to cloud computing and the text is includes highly detailed information around topics such as the costs, speeds, technologies, support and the conveniences of cloud solutions, the content is also relevant to the Akita website and Akita as a business.
Theoretically speaking, this content ticks all the boxes regarding content that the Panda update is trying to encourage and Akita should have seen some ranking improvements due to this content.