Okay so we have another major search engine algorithm update from Google, Penguin 2.0. This was rolled out last week on the 22 May, which is the fourth update of Penguin but officially named Penguin 2.0. according to Matt Cutts from Google.

We will have more on the effects of this update in the coming weeks, as they way it appears to work – Google rollout – results fallout – Google rollback – 3 weeks have now passed. So we will be getting the effects of this for various countries and various industries but for now, I will paste a comment from Matt Cutt’s official blog that probably summaries what we see so far.

“Marko Omcikus May 22, 2013 at 6:10 pm
“Hi Matt,

“Definitely seen a big change go through. I can see that authorities now have a much larger presence as opposed to much smaller sites, is this something that can be overcome by having a larger web presence with Google authorship? It seems that this update just allowed the big fish to forever hold their thrones, making it much harder for the rest of us.”

I concur on this, big sites have been given a boost, serp clustering (big sites ranking at #1,2,3) which pushes competition off the first page, essentially limiting the number of companies that can be represented in the organic listings. This is opening up a higher attraction for Google Adwords, Google Places/Maps and away from SEO. What is particularly obvious too, is the continued “lucky-dip” approach to being ranked somewhere on the first page of the Google search results, if you have done no SEO at all.

That means that you have no links, not even real – unpaid, links from anyone let alone authority sites. There seems to be no rhyme nor reason, it is just like they were one randomly selected site from page 5 or 6 and shown up as the – “see you don’t need to do any seo and you can rank” proof site. Doesn’t matter if they are a poor result, Google appears to be trying flex it’s muscle on the “content marketing myth” – if you build it they will come – banter. Which incidentally doesn’t work – by and large. If it did then out of all the “great content” websites scattered over the first 10 pages of results, which ones have “greater” content than the next? Obviously everyone can’t rank on page one at the top.

So where does this leave us with SEO? Do we do it, do we forget and cross our fingers and hope the the Google fair godmother waves a magic wand our way and looks favourably upon us?

The answer is always complex and I am leaving it for a few weeks as more research needs to be done and observations made.

Stay tuned for the way ahead in these post-Penguin 2.0 times.