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Panda - Google's Quality Content Enforcer

Google Panda Algorithm Explained

Panda was designed to penalize a lack of content, poor quality content or duplicated content

The Google algorithm has changed so much since 2000 that it is now unrecognizable. We introduced the latest algorithms in a recent blog post and now will delve deeper into what they mean for your online marketing strategy.

Experts estimate there’s been over a hundred major changes in Google since 2010, with some, such as Panda, receiving dozens of tweaks. Many aren’t well understood at the time they first appear: It can take weeks to figure them out.

By that time, it can often be too late as it can only take a couple of days for news and PR sites to feel the effects of an 85% reduction in traffic.

What’s more, the pace of the updates is clearly increasing: There were just a few landmark updates between 2005 and 2010, but each year since has seen dramatic changes. Google now works constantly to improve it's algorithm to bring the reader the most relevant content.

What does it all mean to you — what can you do about it?

"Sites with high-quality content focused on their users’ needs will rank better in search"

Google’s goal is to provide the best search results possible. Its expectations for “the best” constantly change, but that doesn’t mean the search world is in chaos. Just like at your own company, Google’s engineering embodies its business philosophy.

If you know the motivation for a change and you can adjust to it, you can boost your search visibility.

Panda is now one of the cornerstones of Google's algorihthms “the user-focused content update.” If your digital marketing is aligned with its goals, it can be rocket fuel for your bottom line.

Feeding the Panda: Quality Content Makes a Difference

Panda has been around since 2011, growing more visible and important all along. While there are many interrelated aspects to Panda, its central idea is simple: Sites with high-quality content focused on their users’ needs will rank better in search.

But what exactly is “quality content?”

Here are three helpful points to illustrate some of things Panda penalizes:

Lack of Content

Sites that have few pages overall or don’t have much text on their pages tend to be less helpful to visitors. Content should be robust and useful. Ideally, new content should be added frequently.

Poor Quality Content

If content isn’t informative, timely, and relevant, it won’t help you climb in search. Each page of your site should work to connect users with resources that really matter to them.

Duplicate Content

Although there’s a lot of controversy around this point, it seems clear that sites which copy and paste from other sources on the  web are at a disadvantage - Even if yours is the original piece, you should take evasive action and discourage anyone from employing this tactic otherwise everybody loses!

How Scientific Businesses Succeed With Panda

To tame Panda, scientific and industrial enterprises should start by leveraging knowledge about their core customers. After all, content can’t “serve your users” if you don’t define them. Look at your key users and buyer personas. Who uses the product? How will it benefit them? What industry are they from? What is their level of education? Personality type etc.

From there, go beyond the “what” of your products and services to the how and why—helping prospective customers make the best decisions for them, and offering value to core customers.

Your Web strategy should include:

  • Informative, Free Content: Offering some value for free is important not only for search engines, but for customers. Your company’s blog is a great place to identify and respond to the key questions your customers are seeking answers to.
  • A Variety of Formats: Don't forget that the way we consume content is changing, even for B2B, scientists and academics, we see that static product brochures are brought to life when converted into video format. Heavy whitepapers are condensed into short, punchy summaries. As content is becoming  increasingly visual - The medium you choose can be vital to enhancing your message.
  • Continuous Contact: Ongoing updates will please the Panda and give your audience a reason to engage. Your brand should develop a social media strategy that amplifies your voice and enhances the ROI from your content.

Panda may seem complex, but with the right approach, it benefits you and your users for the long haul. If you are putting together an online strategy Contact us for a chat about the kind of content which your readers would find useful.

Posted by Frank Barker

Having spent his younger years playing Rugby in the sunny climes of Spain and Australia, Frank graduated from Loughborough University with a BSc in International Business before settling back in rainy Manchester. Frank has helped numerous Science, Engineering and Healthcare companies to create marketing strategies that engage with niche audiences. Having started his career in Sales, he now runs the Marketing department for AZoNetwork. He specialises in data management for sales teams, equipping them with the most actionable, real-time marketing insights from the first touch point through to revenue generating opportunity. A sportsman at heart, Frank still enjoys lacing up the boots for his beloved Macclesfield 1st XV Rugby or pulling on the whites to represent the more serious Macclesfield 3rd XI Cricket team.    

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