Although Matt Cutts previously stated that there would be no ‘major’ updates to the Panda algorithm change throughout December, this didn’t stop them slipping in a minor update that occurred on the 19th Dec.
Reports that this ‘minor’ update has already affected some big sites such as JC Penny, Overstock.com and a host of other big name websites. So keep your eyes peeled as to their changes if you’re interested in observing how others master this change.
How do you fix it?
At the moment there’s no concrete information on the update other than it occurred. Personally we’ve only had one client effected by December’s Pandalization and we’ll be doing so broad investigation into this and as usually starting with on-page SEO.
- Check for ‘light’ content. I’d run the site through Microsoft’s SEO Tool (it’s free) and export all URL’s then sort by length and fix the pages with low volumes of information
- Remove all header images from internal pages. I’ve been chatting on the forums and some people suggest that Google prefers text information above the fold. This is wild speculation so treat with a pinch of salt.
- The same Microsoft report should outline all page titles. Take a look at these and identify the pages that could be perceived as duplicate content. Be careful to include synonyms in your research! Now either rewrite and refocus these pages, noindex them or 301 them to the most relevant page.
- Review the site’s content and expend the text where appropriate making sure that the content is unique and genuinely helpful.
- Check your internal link structure and make sure you dont have competing pages from an anchor text perspective
You’ve probably heard all of that before however we thought this client was safe too!