While many of us were out doing last minute shopping and preparing for the holidays, Google rolled out its 23rd Panda update. On December 21, Google confirmed rumors of the update, announcing on Twitter that they pushed out a Panda data refresh that impacted about 1.3% of English queries.
Some SEOs reported seeing signs of a major update a week before, but Google denied any update. Last year the search engine promised not to update the Panda algorithm or do data refreshes until after the holiday season, and I’m guessing that many people were expecting the same this year. But this time, Google decided not to wait.
This is the 23rd Panda update since the first Panda algorithm debuted on February 24, 2011. Since then there have been 22 updates both to the algorithm and also to the index or data refreshes. Typically the search engine pushes out algorithm updates about once a month. Impacting 1.3% of English queries, update 23 impacted more than 22 (0.8%).
Here are some things that webmasters and SEOs can do to prevent their sites from being affected by the Google Panda:
- Separate out all of your low quality, auto-generated content.
- Stop stealing other people’s articles and create your own unique content.
- Even out your ad-to-content ratio so that your sites are not filled with overwhelming amounts of cheap ads.
- Be active on social media.
Did Panda Update 23 catch you off guard? Let us know in a comment.