Just a few hours ago reports started coming in that the Google Penguin 2.0 has gone live. You can read Barry Schwartz’s preliminary post about it at searchengineland.com. Additionally, an SEO subreddit is had a thread pop up with some pretty interesting comments so far about early changes in the rankings.
Before you start freaking out though, just remember that as long as you took care to remove or disavow bad/spammy backlinks you shouldn’t have to worry about any big changes, at least in a negative way. Unless, of course, all of your backlinks have exact match anchor text, in which case you’re screwed.
Of course, in spite of the ample warning time, I still see plenty “purchase 1000 directory links” and “submit your url to 500 social bookmarking sites”. Some people just never learn when it comes to the realization Google just wants quality results based upon useful content, and they mean to have it.
Matt Cutts posted on his blog announcing the update, here’s what he had to say:
We started rolling out the next generation of the Penguin webspam algorithm this afternoon (May 22, 2013), and the rollout is now complete. About 2.3% of English-US queries are affected to the degree that a regular user might notice. The change has also finished rolling out for other languages world-wide. The scope of Penguin varies by language, e.g. languages with more webspam will see more impact.
This is the fourth Penguin-related launch Google has done, but because this is an updated algorithm (not just a data refresh), we’ve been referring to this change as Penguin 2.0 internally. For more information on what SEOs should expect in the coming months, see the video that we recently released.