Google’s Panda algorithm is presented to the internet users as the ultimate guarantee of quality. Launched in February 2011, when it hit the market like an asteroid that left behind casualties amounting to around 12% of the total English users, Panda has been chasing dubious web content ever since.
1. No discounts on quality
An important aspect that needs to be carefully addressed, because Panda is very sensitive to it, is the quality of your texts. Are you sure that what you’ve written is observing the rules of proper grammar? If you dwindle about this aspect to the point where you don’t care anymore whether your text is correct or not, then you might start changing your mind. There are tools out there that can help you with your grammar. Make use of them. Also, if you make intensive use of article spinners (which a lot of SEO content producers used to do massively before the introduction of the new algorithm) you will have to either stop or take another approach.
You could, for instance, start relying less on the spinner itself and more on your command of language and, even if you still produce spun texts, make sure they are grammatically correct. And speaking of spinners, you will still have to cite your source of inspiration. Paraphrases also count as plagiarism if they’re not properly referenced. And nobody is going to behead you if you were not the first person to have come up with the idea you are expounding. Have the guts to admit it and, even if they won’t think you’re a genius, at least you’ll pass as an honest web user.
2. Checking for accurate data
When you manipulate facts, you need to make sure that your data is precise and that it finds support in reality. So anytime you take a piece of information from another internet source, make sure you check it against other similar sources. If the latter confirm your facts, you’re good to go. If, however, it doesn’t confirm them, you can also use the initial source in your material, just to show diversity of opinions. This is equally great because it shows that you have spent time thinking about the quality of your own text and that you have a reasonable critical ability to distinguish between conflicting pieces of information. If you feel you are too close to your text to notice its faults, then ask somebody else to do the fact-checking for you.
Another thing little Panda is trained to pick up is the connection between a given unit of content and the overall orientation of the website. If you seem to be going into directions that are not supported by the primary goal of your site, you better stop and think. Take a step backward and look at your text again. Spend a little time making the entry you are working on relevant to the purpose of your site. Signposting is a good strategy. The same goes for the relevance of your keywords.
Make sure you are not simply shoving words into your tags to gain traffic. This used to work but it’s no longer the case. Panda will see your plan and will take severe measures. Your site may fall seriously in Google’s ranking, or even disappear from there altogether. And also, don’t forget to check if your content adds any value. Texts without an apparent aim, written only for the sake of writing something, might be picked up by Panda and sanctioned accordingly. So make sure you are as specific as specific can be, and that your information is up to date.
4. No time-off
After all this is done, do make sure that you never stop keeping an eye on the quality and correctitude of your web content. With Google updating its algorithm every month, you don’t want to be caught in the next round of downgrades. Some may find Google’s battle against dubious SEO a witch hunt, or a struggle for corporate consolidation, but you don’t want to find yourself in front of the firing squad. And don’t forget the first amendment of proper SEO: be original. This will always save the day for you, guaranteed.