Google's Penguin update has been somewhat divisive in the search industry. There have been Web sites that were negatively impacted by the update while Google says that Penguin was a success. One of the most persistent rumors, however, has been Google pushing out an update to Penguin. That never seemed to be the case.
Saturday brought word from Matt Cutts that an update had been pushed through. Unfortunately, Cutts was light on details.
It's not immediately clear what the update covers or fixes from the original launch of Penguin back in April. A few legitimate sites claimed to have been hit by Penguin and lost traffic as a result. One theory is that the Penguin 1.1 is meant to address those legitimate sites that were targeted.
If you recall, Penguin has been billed as Google's method of cutting down on Web spam and other nefarious parts of the Web. One of the main concerns that Penguin addressed was the use of backlinks. It was found that sites being linked to by lesser quality sites were affected by Penguin as well. This led to Chris Crum reporting on a new method that had these sites threatening to sue other sites over their use of backlinks. Nobody wants to have poor quality sites linking to them in this post-Penguin world, but linking isn't illegal. That leaves the threat of a lawsuit the only option for those sites that rely on search to get traffic.
It remains to be seen if the newest Penguin update has had any kind of effect on search. It might have been a smart on Google's part to release the update on Memorial Day weekend to avoid any major outcry. It leaves them a few more days to work out any minor kinks that may be in the algorithm.
Still, Matt Cutts refers to Penguin 1.1 as a "Minor weather report." It's highly possible that the update doesn't contain anything that is Web shattering. Google is remaining mum on the details for this update. We'll probably have to wait until the next update on algorithm changes to find out.
Until then, check out our comprehensive guide to appeasing Penguin. It contains all the tips you need to know to keep a quality Web site and retain or increase your traffic in the post-Penguin world.[h/t: SearchEngineLand]