Ready to Press the Panda Button? Google Reveals How Panda and Penguin Updates are Fired Out Manually
There hasn’t been a Panda or a Penguin update so far this year, and this could be a consequence of the updates requiring a manual data push by Google
As revealed by John Muller in a Google Hangout hosted by Webmasters, Google updates are not automatic and need to be enacted manually by Google staff.
Although it is often assumed that Google’s algorithms are completely automated and regularly update to reassess the rankings of websites, this is not the case. The Penguin and Panda updates require staff from Google to manually push them out.
In response to the following question from Josh Bachynski:
We now know that Panda is baked into the Algorithm and it’s refreshing on a regular basis behind the scenes – just reassessing signals as part of the normal algorithm. Has Penguin reached that stage as well?
“I think both of those algorithms currently aren’t updating the data regularly, so that is something where for both of them, we kind of need to push the updates out as well”
View the discussion here:
The Panda Button
As John describes, there isn’t a specific “Panda Button” that gets pressed when the staff at Google arbitrarily feel like it’s a good time for an update; however the updates are not automatics and require manual action to be implemented.
What does this mean for Search Engine Optimisation?
Websites that were negatively affected by either Panda or Penguin updates 4-5 months ago that may have made changes to their website in order to try and recover from the impact to their rankings may not see a positive change until the next Panda or Penguin update. That is not to say that changes made to a website may not have a positive effect in the meantime, as John says “there are many signals” that Google’s algorithm use to determine a site’s ranking which one can benefit from.
However this does mean that many sites will not be able to recover from the algorithm until the next big update, and thus their traffic levels may suffer greatly as a result.
Does anyone want to predict when the next update will be? Feel free to leave your predictions in the comments below!