After numerous rounds of testing, Google announced that they have rolled out an update for the Penguin algorithm in every language. This update comes after many months of speculation as to when the update would actually go live. The original Penguin algorithm first launched in April 2012, and was established to catch websites that were displaying spam-related behavior within search results. The launch of Penguin really affected webmasters who were purchasing links or gaining them through link networks in order to advance their backlink profile.

So, what exactly has changed with the Penguin 4.0 update?

  • Penguin now operates in real-time

For anyone who had a website affected by Penguin’s initial launch, they will be pleased to know that the adjustments they made to their website will now be visible a lot sooner. Before the update was launched, webmasters that had websites that needed improvements, such as eliminating bad links, would need to wait for Penguin to be refreshed before they saw any difference in their online presence. Webmasters will now see how their improvements were received once Google recrawls and reindex a particular page on their website.

  •  Penguin is now page-specific

Rather than affecting an entire website’s ranking, this update allows Penguin to devalue spam on specific pages based on spam-related signals.

Google stated in their Webmaster Central Blog, that they will no longer be commenting on future refreshes, and that Penguin is just one of many signals they use to determine a website’s overall ranking.