Jan 11, 2012

The Evolution of SEO with Google Panda

Via SocialMediaToday
By Mary Manzo

Is it time we upped the ante with SEO? The dawn of Google Panda in 2011 has sparked a shift in how we optimize websites.

Though Google has made a few updates to Panda, it looks like Google is satisfied with how Panda has affected search and it is here to stay.

Originally called "Farmer" because the new algorithm was created to target content farms and push them down in search, the name "Panda" originates from the engineer who was a key developer of the algorithm.

Matt Cutts and Amit Singhal both explained that to develop Panda they first readdressed what characterizes a low-quality site. They tested a group and asked a number of questions that analyze how users would react to the sites that rank on search engine results pages (SERPs).

This evolution in optimization has been ignited by Google's new assessment of how crawling, indexing and ranking awards positive weight on websites.

All the traditional aspects of SEO remain important, but the strength of those tactics is taking less precedence as Panda's machine learning algorithm prioritizes user data and user experience.
What to know about Panda

The Google search engine has adapted to a more intelligent means of distinguishing what is going to give the user the best browsing and search experience.
Social media plays a much larger role in SEO. Unique and original content is no longer limited to keywords in the title tag and in the body. Google is now looking at how shareable and interesting your content is.

Because of the emphasis on usage metrics, the browse and bounce rate of your site is more important than ever.

For the first time, Google is looking at the design of your website as a primary qualifier for good SEO. A good website design has always impacted SEO positively but now it actually plays into how Google is indexing your website.
Panda does an awesome job at eliminating shallow content, low quality and "spammy" sites. Ensure that your website's SEO isn't negatively affected by any content, links, ads or images that can be perceived as spam by Panda.

Panda is a more aggressive algorithm and you need to be aware of this to effectively optimize your brand for search. SEO professionals need to stress the brand and content of their site for users versus robots and crawlers.