Google Penguin Update Gets Fresh Losers List From Searchmetrics

    April 27, 2012
    Chris Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Earlier this week, Searchmetrics put out lists of winners and losers from Google’s Penguin update (when it was still called the Webspam update). After the lists were released, Google’s Matt Cutts spoke out about them, saying that they were inaccurate, because there had also been a Panda update, and that the lists were likely more indicative of that.

Searchmetrics has now updated the lists, acknowledging what Cutts had to say.

“I took nearly a huge set of keywords from short-head to medium and low search volume and looked at the current rankings from position 1 to 100 and compared the rankings to April 20th,” Searchmetrics Founder Marcus Tober writes. “In the data were also some glitches from the Panda 3.5 update which was going live from April 19th to 20th, Matt Cutts mentioned. But overall you see a trend of those domains which really lost visibility within the Google Penguin update.”

Penguin Losers

“A lot of these losers are database-driven websites – they mainly aggregate information and use large database systems to create as many pages as possible. Sites such as songlyrics.com, cubestat.com, lotsofjokes.com or merchandtcircle.com fall into this pattern. It makes sense that these sites will lose visibility,” says Tober. “Press portals and feed aggregators such as pressabout.us, newsalloy.com and bloglines.com were also affected, which makes sense from a Google point of view since these are the website types that are very often created by very aggressive (possibly overly aggressive) SEOs and often contain similar content.”

He notes that ticketnetwork.com and ticketcity.com fit the bill of Google’s efforts with automatic, and possibly spun content.

If you need to know exactly how to avoid getting caught by Google’s Penguin update, I’d start with the tips they give you. If you think you were unfairly hit by it, you can let Google know with a new form they’re providing.

Image: Batman Returns From Warner Bros.

  • Stephanie

    Penguin update? Where does Google come up with such stupid names and does anyone really care any more? Is it just me? Or is Google rapidly becoming less relevant? Also, a big round of applause for Google+ which still doesn’t have as many users as MySpace #FAIL. Good luck on kicking Facebook’s ass there Google Penguins, Pandas, and clowns. The ship is sinking….

  • John

    Dear Google, please kill your penguin update! Sign the petition here:

  • Mark R

    Two weeks ago Google smashed 3 of my websites which will result in my income declining over the next 2 months. Reason? Apparently ‘Unatural Links’, no idea why and who cares?

    We strive to provide top notch info in our niche and we have HUNDREDS of comments and VIDEO testimonials to prove we bring top notch info. On the 24th Google wiped out my other 12 websites resulting in an immediate termination of 50% of my income. You bastards have completely runined my life and any chance of me now living in Asia and living my ‘dream’. I was so close you bastards and you have ruined everything. If you don’t like links to peoples websites, bloody ignore them. Searchers don’t care, they just want quality information, which now is even more difficult for them to find by the looks of things.

    I hope you bastards get what you deserve and everytime you look in the mirror Matt Cutts just remember how many peoples lives you have ruined. People that push their websites to page 1 (gaming or not) mostly want to provide top quality info and they do….if they don’t then Panda will take care of them, but for goodness sake…this is the internet you bastard…how the hell can everyone be held to account for what links they have to their webiste? Ever heard of ‘Reverse SEO’?

  • James

    I am not sure about the biggest losers or biggest winners, but in the middle, from what I can see, it looks like information sites operating in commercial keyword areas got hit pretty hard. Google seems to think that all people who search for xyz widgets are looking only for a place to buy them. It seems plausible that some of these searchers might be looking for information on repairing them, or maintaining them. People who are searching for a taillight for a particular automobile may also be looking for installation information.

  • Warren

    I agree with Mark R. we’re in the same predicament. I too was planning on retiring in Asia. I was planning on getting married too.

    Everything was going good right up until panda or penguin or whatever the hell they want to call it started.

    I’ve checked up on the keywords of competing websites and found worse content, spun and obviously copies. Even articles and content copied from me are showing up 1st page. And I’m nowhere to be found on search! Really Google! All that money and brains and you guys still can’t figure it out??

    You’ve really put a lot of stress on me and many others who’ve only been following good SEO.

  • tom g

    G claims to want original content too but when I write a quality article or review on one of my sites 20-50+ other site scrap it onto theirs within hours and get the rank and 1st page placement for it.
    I think they are using these updates to see what we do to “fix” our sites and use it instead of paying for r&d. So were working for them for free! Every few months they come up w/another excuse to shuffle the deck. They should call it a suggestion engine instead of a search engine. I Don’t use them for anything anymore, no one should imo.

  • alex

    The update is counter productive and is quickly ruining lives. We were spammed by a rival. I cant prove it to google, and if i could, would they listen>? Webmasters are just “noise” as far as google as concerned, they are abusing their power. My niche sat sat at top of loads of keywords for 9 years, now, what is in its place? Spammy advert sites, 3 page basic sites and other crap. Whats my site like? 1500 pages full of completely original content, mentioned in top trade mags and journals across the world, colleges have even based lessons and lectures around my work. Thanks google. If you were a person, you would be a bullying, greedy twat.

  • http://www.dotponto.com/ Steve Masters

    Looking at that list, half of the sites at the top of the list I would not visit twice. Other sites which look pretty good may have been targeted because they have Google Adsense ads dominating above the fold and/or a bad backlink profile. It could be a number of Penguin/Panda factors coming into play.

    Also, the losses for some of them may be temporary because there is always a bit of repositioning when Google changes things and as pages are being reindexed.

  • Came From

    When a site’s visitors are more and more from referral sites than Search Engines especially Google, there’s something for both webmasters and Google to ponder. Links from relevant sites will bring you more traffic than Google. Follow or NoFollow doesn’t matter and PRs don’t matter any more. They’re plain ridiculous. Human’s brain is always smarter than a robot’s.

  • http://Www.jasjotbains.com Jasjot

    Seriously where do they come up with these names?? Whats next?? Lizard update? Cow update? If google could help deliver lesser ads in the search results and let webmasters concentrate on writing quality content rather than waste their time wriggling out of shitty animal named updates, it would be better for the internet and more importantly for google..I wish FB comes out with their own search, them google can take all their updates and stuff it up.

    • Bill

      I don’t know but I bet it starts with a P and will suck just as badly. Porcupine, Pheasant, Pig, Possum…as long as the second letter comes after e (PAnda, PEnguin) in the alphabet. Those clever Google guys. PS, for some search terms I see 6 results on the first page divided between two sites. Well done Google!

  • http://www.majesticwebagency.co.uk Sam Dawson @ Web Design Cheshire

    Agree with Jasjot i really hope facebook go for the search engine market.

    People are getting sick and tired of Google and some things run there course. if the was a feasible alternative im sure people may start looking else where.

    A shift in power may be on the horizon

  • diberry

    Panda, Penguin does not effect these duplicate sites from same person, strange!
    http://website.informer.com (alexa 400)

  • Sarah @ Zion & Zion

    Thanks for the list! What update is coming next? The Puma Update?