Around 93% of Internet experiences begin with a search engine, and it’s no secret that Google is the world’s main hub for online searches. The way that Google determines its page rankings (that is, the results you see after entering a search query) is set by an algorithm that crawls and indexes trillions of pages.

The goal of search engine optimization strategies and SEO marketing companies, in general, is to figure out what criteria that Google algorithm uses to make some pages rank higher than others. So when Google announces that they’re changing or updating their core algorithm, you’d better believe SEO consultants are listening.

That’s exactly what happened recently when Google rolled out Penguin 4.0, its newest update to the search algorithm. There are a few significant changes that may have an impact on how SEO marketing companies go about their business to create the most effective results possible, especially in regards to link building and spam.

Now, a few weeks after the updates have been implemented, here are a few key takeaways in regards to Penguin 4.0:

It works in real time. Previously, beneficial changes made to your site or SEO strategy may have taken days, weeks, or even months to affect on your rankings. Now, Google’s crawlers are working in real time so that you can better gauge how your strategies are working.

It’s more “granular.” This is the language Google used to describe how the new algorithm detects spam, which is to say that it works closer to a case-by-case basis. Spammy links are now judged more by their page content than by their affiliates, which minimizes link penalties for perhaps unsuspecting domains.

Quality content is more important than ever. Page content needs to be high quality, informative, and useful to readers. While that’s always been a strong part of good SEO practice, Google’s intelligence bots make it easier to identify at a glance.

As Google’s algorithms become increasingly sophisticated, it’s all the more important to make sure that your site is building its web presence in all the right ways. Contact our SEO experts to learn how you can boost local traffic and realize the full benefits of a strong Internet presence.