Unconfirmed Google Algorithm Update Better at Discounting Links and Spam
Although any changes remain unconfirmed, reports suggest that Google made some tweaks to its algorithm back in February and that link spam was the target.
It looks like in their bid to tackle aggressive link building, the search engine giant made an update around 1st February.
Experts have singled out the detection capabilities of Google Penguin as one of the main focuses, but there was also speculation that the changes were due to an entirely new algorithm.
Black hat attack
Grumblings in the community-based around ‘black hat SEO’ would seem to confirm the effectiveness of the strike, with private blog networks (PBN) suffering penalties and complaining of slowness in the search engine picking up links.
The occurrence of suspected changes was backed up by signs of turbulence in search tracking tools such as MozCast and RankRanger.
The theory of spammy links being the intended target would seem to be supported by the lack of any knock on effect on the ‘white hat SEO’ community.
To confuse matters a little, a confirmed Google update occurred on the same day, specifically intended for Google Japan, but it is not thought that these changes are connected with those detailed above.
John Muller speaks
Google Webmaster John Muller made some comments this year which some felt spelt danger for PBNs, suggesting that re-registered expire domains risk losing their SEO value should they fail to keep the same kind of content.
He explained: “Sometimes we recognise that a new site is completely unrelated to an old site. So, for example, if you go out and buy an old domain name, it might have been a church website for 10 years. If we recognise your new website is really not the same as it was, then we need to understand that difference and say that, these links, they apply to the old website but they don’t apply to the new one.”