Google Panda Update Goes Global – Somewhat

On 24 February 2011, rolled out a new update targeting spammy sites that generate SEO-heavy content that is not necessarily rich for users. These sites are generally known as content farms.  Common characteristics of content farms include:

  • SEO optimized content (that may or may not make sense) for relatively competitive keyword phrases
  • Free content or low-paid writers who have to crank out dozens of articles to make a pittance
  • High advertising ratios – often with ads that bisect articles, and other tactics to encourage pay-per-click click revenue
  • And little to know relevance among the topics covered across the site, little depth of coverage and a “scraping of the surface” of the topic at hand

Because content farms were the target of this update, SEOMoz dubbed it the “Farmer” update, which, frankly, makes a heck of a lot more sense than the internal codeword used at Google: the Panda update.  So you’ll hear about Panda, Farmer and Panda who farm, but it’s all talking about the same algo change.

Yesterday, the Panda update went live in English-speaking international markets –, and others saw the shifts in their SERPs.  It’s pretty soon to tell how this is going to impact search referrals for the site I shepherd, but as far as I can tell it looks like the same URLs that were targeted on the update also took a hit in the UK rankings.

Please share your observations and thoughts here about where this is rolling out on global Google platforms. Are you seeing the same results? We’ve had a month to get ready for it, were you surprised by the result?

2 thoughts on “Google Panda Update Goes Global – Somewhat

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