What is Google Penguin

How to Know if You’ve Been Penalized by Google Algo – How to Recover

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If you are doing blogging or search engine optimization, then you should know about these two words, “Panda & “Penguin. If you are still in confusion that how these two works and which type of websites they are hitting. So, here is will show how complete structure of these two.

After 2011, Google changed the face of SEO. Google has made major changes in last two or three years to rank websites. After launching these Algo, majority of businesses have been forced to change their SEO strategies. Anyway, in this tutorial I am going to discuss:

What is Google Panda & Penguin?

How To Check If you’ve Been Penalized?

Why you’ve Been Penalized

Tips to Avoid Google Panda and Penguin Penalty


Google Panda:

Google Panda & Penguin

Google panda is the Algorithm of Google that, it was released in February 2011. It was released to change in search engine result pages. The change aimed to lower the poor websites and keep up high ranking websites. Panda hits low quality website or those who have copied contents. In another words, Google Panda works as a filter that prevents low quality websites to come up in the ranking. Let me clarify you with an example. If someone writing quality contents and publishing on his/her own website. Another person copied this article and publish as it is on own blog. So, the second one will never come up in ranking because he/she publishing copied contents. So, Google used this Algo (Google Panda) to filter poor quality websites to come up in ranking.

Google Penguin:

What is Google Penguin

Google penguin was announced on April 24, 2012. The main aimed of this Algo is decreasing search engine rankings of websites that violate Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. When Google started filleting poor websites, then lot of people had started doing over-optimization. So, after Google panda, Google has decided to kick websites that using black-hat SEO techniques to optimize their websites. Google Penguin 2.1 was the most recent update made on 4 Oct 2013. This update had pretentious only 1% searches, but previous update 2.0 had made huge changes in search engine results.

A Summary of Penguin Releases

• Penguin 1.0: April 24, 2012 (impacted around 3.1% of queries)

• Penguin 1.2: May 26, 2012 (impacted less than 0.1%)

• Penguin 1.3: Oct. 5, 2012 (impacted around 0.3% of queries)

• Penguin 2.0: May 22, 2013 (impacted 2.3% of queries)

• Penguin 2.1: Oct. 4, 2013 (impacted around 1% of queries)

How To Check If you’ve Been Penalized?

Lot of my readers ask me that how we can check our website to know that we’ve been penalized or not. So here I will discuss that how you can check your website for Google Panda and Penguin updates. There are three ways through which you can figure out whether you been penalized or not.

Traffic Down in Google Analytics

First way to know if you’ve been penalized by Google Algo is to look at drop-off dates in your organic traffic by using Google Analytics, and then match those dates with Moz’ Google algorithm change document which shows the dates when new update rolling.

Another best way to judge use penguin tool, here you will able to see if you’ve been penalized by recent update or not.

We’ve seen recently another best tool, Fruition’s Google Penalty Checker Tool. This tool is very handy and free to check. Here I am going to show you complete procedure that you can check by using fruition Google Penalty tool.

1. Go to fruition Google Penalty tool website (click here for website)

2. Choose Basic Google Penalty Checker Plan which is free and then click on Get Started.

Check Google Updates

3. After that, you will be redirected to a new page, if you are new user then create account first and if you are already registered, then login.

Google Algrothems updates checker

4. After registration, I will ask you for Google Authorization.

Google updates checker

5. After that, you can select your domain about which you want to know.

Here are some screenshots of this tool.

Panda & Penguin updates with colors
Panda & Penguin UPdates
In this tool, you will see four types of color:

Green (Positive Impact)

Yellow (No Impact)

Orange (Negative Impact)

Red (Extremely Negative Impact)

So if you are getting more greens, then no need to worry, there will be a positive impact of updates. If lot of yellow’s then also no worry, it means no impact on your website. Orange means bit negative impact on your website, and if you are getting RED, then you should worry about that, it means extremely negative impact on your website.

How To Recover From Google Panda And Penguin Updates

So, this is most frequently asked question now a days. Here I will recommend you some best SEO techniques through which you can optimize your website without getting any penalty from Google Panda.

Before going to discuss Google Panda remedies, first we should know which type of websites can be penalized.

Website has poor or low quality content.

A website which works as content farm.

Bad SEO structure or Black-Hat SEO.

Copied content.

Too many advertisements.

Grammatical Mistakes.

Slow website performance (Loading Time)


So, these are some reasons due to which you can give lunch to Google Panda. Now I am going to give you some suggestions if you’ve been penalized.

Write Quality Content:

Many times it may have been told you that contents are king, Yup, contents are real king. Writing quality contents mean complete post that should be useful for your reader. Always try to target a specific keyword in your post. A quality post without specific keyword will be useless for both, search engine and for user as well. Another thing that you should keep in mind that Google takes quality and length very seriously. Lengthy content will always get more high rank in search engine.

Here you can see Average content length of top 10 results.
Average article length in SEO

Bottom line: You shouldn’t focus not quantity of words; keep quality in your article.

Remove Low quality content:

If you have any article on your website that you think don’t have any value for your reader, then get rid of low quality articles. Google looks low quality articles very seriously and if you want to keep yourself secure from Google Algorithms, then remove all the articles that don’t have value for your reader and search engine as well.

Duplicate content:

I am the strong believer of this think that if you have copied material on your website or blog, you should ready for any surprise from Google. Copied contents will always hurt your ranking and your whole website as well. You should publish plagiarism free articles. Don’t steal any material from anywhere.

SEO Friendly Layout:

Layout of your website or blog shouldn’t be too complicated to navigate or crawl. Always use simple and elegant theme/template. Complicated layout of your website will always hurt you.

Social Media Promotion:

Social signals are very important for any website. Always take the advantage of social media for contents marketing. Social media can really help to you boost website traffic and will also keep away from any penalty. Be active on social websites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Delicious and especially Google+.

External links:

This is the most important factor here. If you are selling links or paid backlinks, then I will suggest you stop immediately. Google takes paid backlinks very seriously. Bad neighborhood will always headache for you. It will also decrease search engine ranking and sooner or later you will get penalized. Lot of people still confuse about external links. Though Google not takes no-follow links seriously but if you are creating too many external links, then it will hurt your ranking, but if you are linking to relevant articles, it will never affect your ranking. So, you need to give extra attention to outgoing links.

Remove All Broken Links:

Broken links mean your anchor text that not responding. Fix all broken link that you have. If you are a WordPress user, then you can find a plugin to find broken link. However, you can check broken links from Google Webmaster Tools as well.

Page Loading Speed:

Google has made it very clear that low page loading time can hinder a website’s search engine rankings. Website loading much matter in search engine optimization. If your website takes more time to load, then you should worry about that. Here are some best suggestions to increase website performance.

#1 Don’t use too many advertisements.

#2 Optimize images properly.

#3 Don’t use too many plugins (For WordPress users)

#4 Use cache plugins (For WP users)

#5 Avoid flashes

I’ve Been Hit With a Google Penguin Penalty, What I Do?

How to Recover from Penguin? This is most common question in blogging & SEO world. Anyhow, if you are penalized by Google Penguin, then adopt these simple techniques to recover.

Identifying your penalty:

First of all you need to know about penalty. There are two types of penalties, manual and algorithmic. Main difference between these two is, manual penalty, you will receive a message in Google Webmaster Tools and if it is algorithmic penalty, then you will see drop in organic traffic.

Remove UN Natural Backlinks and Create New Link-building campaign:

Remove all irrelevant and un-natural backlinks that pointing your website. There are lot of tools available through which you can check your all backlinks with complete info. You can use Monitor Backlinks, Majestic SEO, Open Site Explorer & Ahrefs, these are very handy tools to point your backlinks with anchor text.

What are the bad links that can cause a penalty?

These are some backlinks that can cause a penalty:

Not related to your niche

Gambling, hacking/cracking or porn websites

Backlinks from already penalized websites

Spammy blog comments, forum signatures and site-wide backlinks

Over optimized anchor texts

Links coming from websites with duplicate content

Bad redirects


Stop Over Optimization:

Final thing is, stop over optimization. Keep keywords density 2-3%, don’t over optimize your rich anchor text. Over optimization will always drop your ranking and sooner or later you will see penalty from penguin, because scenario has been changed, Google is not simple as it was five or six back. You need to do each and everything according to Google policies. Do fair game with Google and Google also will fair with you.

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7 thoughts on “How to Know if You’ve Been Penalized by Google Algo – How to Recover”

  1. jagdish kashyap

    Thanks for the information, i really want to know what is going on google’s mind for my site 😉
    Thanks Again for the great info.

  2. Hello Waqas – Thanks for sharing this information. There were many big sites that were affected by these roll out’s and all the webmasters need to check if their site has been impacted and this guide will surely help them to check if they are impacted and if so how to recover from them. Thanks again for sharing.

  3. Thanks Waqas for share great info because many few peoples share the knowledge that how to recover by kicked blog from algo….

  4. Hi Waqas, Detailed post about Google penalty and recovery from it.

    You have also shared good places to check for Google algo update. And yes, bad seo and more page loading time, slow speed affects our ranking in Google.

    Thanks for sharing.

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