It’s been announced by a Google spokesperson that the Penguin algorithm will be updated continuously, by optimizing it as they go. A Google spokesperson released the following statement to Search Engine Land after being asked questions about the holiday Penguin updates.
“That last big update is still rolling out — though really there won’t be a particularly distinct end-point to the activity, since Penguin is shifting to more continuous updates. The idea is to keep optimizing as we go now.”
With that statement, it seems that all the reports of Penguin changes have been explained. The way Search Engine Land is handling this information, is to label a new version of Penguin when they feel there is a significant enough of a change by Google to warrant it in a new 3.x category.
Normally, when there is going to be a new update for Penguin, all of them had been processed offline, and then finally pushed to Google live at a specific time. Google is now saying that they are going to change the algorithm within their live ranking processes. Ultimately, this could mean that by doing live changes to the algorithm, there won’t be any more large data pushes for Penguin.
Search Engine Land will continue to document when they think there is a live change to the Penguin algorithm.
With the holidays here, there is obviously some concerns from people with businesses that depend on their online websites. The impact of the live changes is still unclear at this point. Will link removal or Google’s disavow efforts be processed every time a live algorithm change happens?
Here is the current documented list of Penguin updates by Search Engine Land:
- Penguin 1.0 on April 24, 2012 (impacting ~3.1% of queries)
- Penguin 1.1 on May 26, 2012 (impacting less than 0.1%)
- Penguin 1.2 on October 5, 2012 (impacting ~0.3% of queries)
- Penguin 2.0 on May 22, 2013 (impacting 2.3% of queries)
- Penguin 2.1 on Oct. 4, 2013 (impacting around 1% of queries)
- Penguin 3.0 on October 17, 2014 (impacting around 1% of queries)
- Penguin 3.1 on November 27, 2014 (confirmed by Google, no impact given, Google considers part of Penguin 3.0)
- Penguin 3.2 on December 2, 2014 (not confirmed by Google but based on publisher reports)
- Penguin 3.3 on December 5, 2014 (not confirmed by Google but based on publisher reports)
- Penguin 3.4 on December 6, 2014 (not confirmed by Google but based on publisher reports)