It was announced that Google has updated its core algorithm to include Penguin as part of the real-time updates. If you’re not familiar with Penguin, it was launched in 2012 as a means to devalue sites / pages that receive spammy links, as well as analyzing potentially “over-optimized” pages on a site. (See the announcement from Google below)

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  • Penguin is now real-time. Historically, the list of sites affected by Penguin was periodically refreshed at the same time. Once a webmaster considerably improved their site and its presence on the internet, many of Google’s algorithms would take that into consideration very fast, but others, like Penguin, needed to be refreshed. With this change, Penguin’s data is refreshed in real time, so changes will be visible much faster, typically taking effect shortly after we recrawl and reindex a page. It also means we’re not going to comment on future refreshes.
  • Penguin is now more granular. Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site.

What all of this means

  • The real-time part we understand, it means when Google indexes the page, it will immediately recalculate the signals around Penguin.
  • Penguin being more “granular” is a bit confusing. I suspect it means that now Penguin can impact sites on a page-by-page basis, as opposed to how it worked in the past where it impacted the whole site. So really spammy pages or spammy sections of your site can solely be impacted by Penguin now, as opposed to your whole web site. That is my guess, I am trying to get clarification on this.

Keep your link profiles clean and have a great week!