Even during a slow roll-out of Google's Penguin refresh, you can never be too careful. Here's an important guide to keep you safe from any future refreshes or updates.
It’s been a long summer and an entire year has passed since the world (wide web) was last shaken up by the ferocious Penguin (refresh). On October 17th however, the Penguin (2.2, formerly known as 3.0) rolled out from hibernation and threw the web headfirst into what could very well be another ‘winter of disavow’. Although this Indian (stretching into the jungles of Southern China) summer has seen the pesky Panda (4.1) at play; unfortunately the worst is still to come. The Penguin may not cause as much damage this winter as during his May 2013 visit (Penguin 2.0) or after his first visit in April 2012 (Penguin 1.0) but ever since the snow storm in October 2013 (Penguin 2.1), it’s been a suspiciously long time since the Penguin has been sighted on the web so it’s safe to say that he is surely going to be bringing a storm with him. The last handful of times that the Penguin did come to visit, thousands of homes (websites) were hit and chaos ensued, so be warned; winter is coming and this year there is every chance that it may be no different from the last.
This winter survival guide will ensure that your home doesn’t get hit again by the unrelenting Penguin. The first step will be to take down all of those badly placed posters (links) in other peoples homes. The Penguin is hungry for anybody who has misbehaved (like Father Christmas). The Penguin knows if you have been greedy, trying to persuade people to visit your home and maybe even sleep in your spare room, whether or not they truly desired to be in this area. The Penguin has visited the brothels and drug dens (directories), the Penguin has seen your ill placed posters. The Penguin has no time for the gutter rats of society, he will find you and he will leave your home in tatters.
So the first step in my winter survival guide is to contact the owners of these seedy establishments and politely yet forcefully request that they remove your posters. You no longer wish to be associated with such filth. If they refuse, which they quite possibly will, threaten to contact the Webmaster (Google Disavow File). This should be enough to make even the most stubborn of gutter rats comply with your wish. Nobody wants to suffer the wrath of the Webmaster beyond the wall, not anybody. Don’t think that your posters in the pharmacies or butchers will be safe from the Penguin either. The Penguin knows that they’re only placed there to lure people into your home, the Penguin does not like this; a butchers should have posters about meat and a pharmacy have posters about medicine, not about your home. The Penguin see’s right through this and he will get you.
The Penguin also knows who you have been talking to, he won’t be happy if he finds out that you have been trying to lure guests into your home whilst conversing at a royal coronation. This is inappropriate and the Penguin, and other attendees know this. Unless you’re at a ‘guest house’ convention or something similar, keep it to yourselves (nofollow the link) if you want to avoid the Penguin. Don’t give people gold (money) in order to put your posters up! There are specific agencies (PPC) who are allowed to do this, unless through these particular agencies, avoid this tactic and stay safe from the Penguin. The last and incredibly important thing to avoid is ‘cloaking’. The Penguin is not stupid. If you just try and hide your posters or maybe even discreetly place them in the midst of other noticeboards (fluffy content or exact keyword anchor text), the Penguin will notice this and will find you.
Luckily for all home owners out there; the Webmaster of the Kingdom of Google (Google Webmaster Tools) will provide you with the tools (disavow tool) to locate your posters and give you the opportunity to analyse whether they would be likely to anger the Penguin. The Webmaster sees all and he wants his kingdom rid of filth. Several lesser known councils can also provide you with the tools to prepare against any future attacks from the Penguin. The councils include; The Majestic SEO, Ahrefs and the Open Site Explorer from the Kingdom of Moz. In order to keep yourself extra safe, seeking help from each of these councils would be beneficial.
It would also help if you were to clear up your own home, as even though a visit from the Panda may have already occurred and you’re in the recovery stages, the Penguin will still examine your home. If the Penguin sees undesirable posters plastered all over your walls, he’ll lose his cool (it isn’t easy for a Penguin to lose his cool) and you will suffer the consequences.
There are safety measures that can and should be taken to protect your home from the Penguin, but be weary, these steps won’t provide instant protection like you would get with a guard dog. In order to keep your business profitable, you will need to ensure that your home is in an absolutely fantastic state, so that your lodgers not only want to come back but they are willing to spread the news of their fantastic experience to the right people in the right environments!
The process to be ‘Penguin safe’ will need to be continued for as long as you own your current home and you won’t see the results until the Penguin next visits town, but keep at it and when he does; you’ll be happy, safe and hopefully in a better financial position.
Flickr Creative Commons Image: Eli Duke