Google has launched the latest update to its search algorithms, rolling out Panda 3.9 earlier this week.
Around one per cent of searches are expected to be affected by the update, which will add to the original Panda plan to remove poor quality content and 'thin' website from the top search results.
The update makes it increasingly important for websites to look into their content and ensure it is unique, well-written and informative in order to avoid being penalised in the rankings.
With this in mind, it is worth noting that the update can have a positive affect on the page rank of a site. Webmasters need to spend some time getting to know Google's algorithms and updates though in order to reap the benefits.
For example, duplicated content is heavily frowned upon by Google and chances are that this latest update will streamline the search engine's efforts to penalise sites that feature it. Looking back through your old pages and ensuring that you are only posting original work will not only help boost your site's position in Google, but it will also mean that you are offering something more worthwhile to your visitors.
Matt Cutts, a distinguished Google engineer, has noted in the past that search engine optimisation (SEO) is not the enemy and went so far as to approve of efforts to optimise sites when white hat methods are used.
However, Panda is designed to catch people who are using black hat SEO techniques to try and boost their ranking without providing anything that is actually of use to their visitors.
Mr Cutts remarked: “The goal of many of our ranking changes is to help searchers find sites that provide a great user experience and fulfill their information needs. We also want the 'good guys' making great sites for users, not just algorithms, to see their effort rewarded.
“To that end, we’ve launched Panda Changes that successfully returned higher-quality sites in search results.”
The previous algorithm update to Panda took place on 25 June and is the ninth such update.