Google Panda Update: Google’s Obnoxious Attempt to Remove Web Spam

By Sidharth | Google

Back when I was in school, I was a good student. I was involved in extracurricular activities, I was badged as the “brightest” student in the class and, in all seriousness, everyone liked me for my down-to-earth nature. I realized I could do anything, but then, I also realized that doing everything doesn’t mean you will always succeed.

Life after school was even more enjoyable, I made a few great friends in college. However, it was one friend, Vikram, who staked my thoughts to a new level. He was, unquestionably, the real Tony Robbins for me. He knew exactly where I was standing in this realm of life, and for reasons I can’t seem to recall, he demanded me to delve into the internet world.

I learned two important things here: not to venture into everything all at once, and to focus on one thing at a time.

My new time killer: Blogging.

It didn’t take me long to figure out what blogging was all about. However, it did take me a while to get my first domain name. After purchasing in 2008, blogging started off with a bang — blogging was my new hobby — and whenever I had some time to kill, I stitched my opinions together, and published a couple of articles every week on this blog.

After a couple of months, blogging really began to kick off, and some popular sites linked to this blog which sparked my interest towards blogging to a greater extent. In 2009, a local newspaper interviewed me for my “achievements” in blogging. Traffic saw newer heights in 2011 as we were almost touching one million page views per month and, not to forget, revenue from this blog was good enough to keep me away from taking up day job.

The Panda update

I was on top of the line and very much contented with the performance of this blog, so much that I couldn’t ask for more. When everything was on track, Google decided to tweak the search algorithm and introduced an obnoxious update called the “Panda update.”

The Panda update was implemented to weed out spammy/scraper sites from the search engine, thereby delivering relevant results and enriching users experience while Googling.

Panda… I hate you!

It was in the month of February when Panda rolled out in US, the loss in traffic was unnoticeable. However, in the month of April, Panda began to show off its true color and this blog lost a significant amount of visitors. I am not whistling in the dark and making assumptions out of thin air; the stats should speak the truth:

Traffic of this blog slumped by almost 60%. Due to the loss in traffic, this blog recorded the all-time lowest revenue in the year 2011. This came in as a shocker — at first, it was unexpected, and now I couldn’t believe my eyes.

Thanks for the Panda update Google, this blog is back to square one.

Hear us, Google!

This Panda update has broken the search engine. For example, this week I wrote an article on the ongoing issue with Sony’s PlayStation Network, copying the first paragraph and searching on Google reveals this result:

See? — Scraper sites are sitting on the first place while this blog has been ranked lower at 7th position. Ridiculous!

Google should have ranked quality sites on top, but thanks to the Panda update, scraper sites are enjoying this fruitful position. As funny as it may sound, even the head of Google’s Web Spam Team, Matt Cutts, is a victim of this update:

While Matt Cutts may not care for the loss of traffic, but the message is clear: the Panda update is flawed.

Last but not the least…

Google, I have always tried to do something out of the ordinary. Every article written in this blog is unique, plus we are in Google News — you approved this blog in News for its quality of articles, right? I like what you have done for me; however after looking at this week’s stats, I feel pathetic, and you know why.

It is not that I am the only one spitting nails over the Google Panda Update, but a majority of bloggers are facing a slump in their traffic as well. So all we ask for is another update in your search algorithm, or better yet, bring back the old Google. This Panda, for now, sucks!

About the Author

Hi, I am Sidharth. Full-time blogger. Editor of Blogote. And a self-proclaimed geek!