An update about the update. Google Panda 4.2

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If you read our blog posts regularly, you will be aware of our recent posting about Google Panda 4.2. Now that a few weeks have passed we are in a position to be able to assess what is happening with it.

The first thing to note is the confirmation of the very slow process for roll out which we explored in the previous article. Google has since come out and stated that the slow roll out is for “technical reasons” and that this relates to some kind of “internal issue.” Google must be worried about peoples opinions of these updates because they clearly and firmly stated they are not trying to confuse anyone. This may seem a little puzzling on reflection, as on the other hand, Google have gone on to say that crawling and indexing is happening normally but rolling out slowly (which sort of does confuse things as it makes it unclear precisely what is going on.)

Part of the criticism for the slow roll out is pointed at the fact that websites want to see the effect of any changes more or less straight away (which is understandable as webmasters need to assess any impact and take action should they feel they need to.)

So what can we already conclude?

Reports suggest that the Panda update has already affected around 2 to 3% of queries. Given we know a lengthy roll out is likely this doesn’t mean anything at this stage. Previous updates have been said to target 5 or even 7.5% of queries so this would seem to suggest that work is far from complete. It looks as though little activity or impact has been felt across the wider community at the moment which can suggest either: 1) most sites are fine, or 2) the true ‘meat’ of the update hasn’t really even started yet. We are guessing the latter!

What people are likely to see is rises and falls in traffic over coming weeks and months. It is perhaps only when these have settled down and are complete that  anyone will be able to evaluate the true impact of the Panda 4.2 update.

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