Google released their most awaited latest Penguin update 2.0 relating to webspam and hacking on 22nd May 2013. There was a big hype created by digital media that it will be bigger than Penguin 1.0 and most of the websites will be impacted. SEO industry got a sign of relief when they  studied the impact in detail and found it to be moderate. I have collected the fact and figures about Google Penguin 2.0.

  1. Google Penguin 2.0 was released on 22nd May 2012, six month after the previous penguin update and implemented into Google’s algorithm within few hours.
  2. Penguin 2.0 is an algorithmic update and it is not just a data refresh.
  3. It was fourth update relating to Penguin and at many places webmaster community named is as Penguin 4 but Matt Cutts officially confirmed it being named as Penguin 2.0.
  4. Google Penguin 2.0 doesn’t seem to be as big as many people expected. Search community confirmed on many blogs that it is less jarring and jolting than many people feared. Google itself confirmed that the impact wouldn’t be as high as many thought.
  5. It affected 2.3% of English-US queries.
  6. Penguin 2.0 not only rolled out for English queries but also for other languages of the world. SearchMetrics confirmed impact was much stronger in Germany than in the U.S.
  7. It has not much impacted the English queries but it may be bigger in terms of other languages where webspam is higher.
  8. According to SearchMetrics initial study gaming and porn sites are mostly affected by this update.
  9. Spam websites are still ranking even after this update and Google made a special spam report known as Penguin Spam Report available at http://bit.ly/penguinspamreport
  10. Denying value upstream for link spammers will come later.
  11. “The previous iteration of Penguin would essentially only look at the home page of a site. The newer generation of Penguin goes much deeper and has a really big impact in certain small areas” – Matt Cutts
  12. Sites using black hat SEO methods and having low quality backlinks in there profile are badly hit by this update.
  13. Google Penguin 2.0 would be a great help to businesses, whether small or mid-sized.
  14. It is observed that majority of impact from this update seems to be concentrated deep in the SERP — third page and lower.
  15. Websites with authority are ranking higher than before.
  16. Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Linkedin, Blogspot and other social media account profiles are ranking higher in search results. In many cases social profiles are now outranking your own .COMs.
  17. Matt Cutts confirmed that this update is not that strong – “we can adjust the impact but we wanted to start at one level and then we can modify things appropriately”
  18. This update has focused on “Cluster results” problems but unable to handle fully.
  19. More affected search queries are related with an affiliation with spam. An example would be “payday loans.”
  20. As Matt Cutts explained about 2.0, “It’s a brand new generation of algorithms. The previous iteration of Penguin would essentially only look at the home page of a site. The newer generation of Penguin goes much deeper and has a really big impact in certain small areas.”  SEOMOZ confirmed that “evidence suggested that Penguin 2.0 was more finely targeted to the page level. “

Google penguin update is still very new and I have collected the facts from initial reactions within the SEO community. The facts and figures will change with the time as the webmasters will report more changes and impacts. Penguin 2.0 still to be learned in depth.