Ever since Google’s Panda update in 2011, more and more sites are finding it difficult to improve their site in order to keep up with the changes. Whether the problems are caused by poorly written content or a lack of helpful information, the Panda update has made it more difficult for sites to achieve a high ranking. This means that if you want your site to be featured highly on Google search results, then you need to make a few changes to bring your site up to scratch.
Here we will take a look at what you can do in order to improve your site so then it passes the Panda update test. We’ll also show you the free online tools that you can use in order to make sure that your site is up to the necessary standard.
Check The Word Count Of Your Posts
One of the first things you need to do is make sure that all of your pages have enough content in order to pass the Panda word count test. The Panda update requires a page to have content of 500 words or over in order to get a healthy position in rankings. This change was made in an attempt to ensure nothing but useful content appeared on search results. Google basically thinks that if you haven’t got 500 words on your page, then you can’t be sharing very helpful information.
If you want to check the word count of all of your web pages quickly and easily, then ScreamingFrog is a great free online tool you can use. ScreamingFrog is able to do a very quick scan of your website and find all the web pages you have. It will then show you a few extra details about those pages, including their word count. As long as you have 500 words or above on all of your pages, then your site should be considered fairly healthy. If any slip below that word count, however, then you should go back and amend your content so then it meets Google’s standards.
Check All Of Your Content Is Original
There are few things quite as damaging to your online reputation as being found to be using material that has been plagiarised. Before you go any further with your site, it is important to make sure all of the content you are using is completed original. It’s also important to check that any references or quotes you make have also been done in the proper fashion.
Copyscape is probably the most popular free online tool you can use to make sure your content is completely original. The only downside is that you will have to check all your web pages separately, which can be a little time-consuming. It is very important though and is something that is well worth dedicating a bit of time to. If you find any signs of plagiarism on your site, then make all the changes you need in order to make your content original.
If you want to double-check how original your content is, then you can do a Google search to see if any of your content shows up anywhere else online. Simple type Intext:”, then paste in the excerpt from your content, put closing quotation marks and then search. Then you can look through the results and see if the text appears anywhere else on the web. Also, keep an eye out for your own site. If your site is all the way at the bottom of the search in the omitted results section, then you have a content issue that needs to be addressed.
Check The Effects Of Recent Google Updates
If you are running a website, then you really should be using a system like Google Analytics. If you are using Analytics, then you will have free access to the Penguin tool. This is very effective at showing how your organic traffic has changed when new updates have been integrated.
If you are lucky and have good content already, then you could find that the updates have had no effect on your traffic at all. If you find however that your hits have dropped drastically, then you know you need to make important changes. If you keep using this tool, you will be able to keep track of all the updates that are made so then you can make changes quickly. This will prevent your site from falling too low in the rankings before you make the necessary alterations.
Check The SEO Optimisation Of Your Site
If there has been a Panda update within the last few months, then you will be able to check how effective your keywords are proving to be at generating traffic. The Google Analytics tool SearchMetrics is a great way of performing the check quickly and easily. All you have to do is type in your domain name and it will give you all the details you need.
If you find that the keywords you are using have proven to be less effective since the update, then it could be time to consider using something else. However, if you’re lucky, then there will not be very much changed at all.
Ultimately, if you are providing content that provides a lot of value to people searching online, then you will receive a high ranking in return. If your content is well written and informative then you shouldn’t need to make that many changes whenever a new Panda update is made. If however, your content is not entirely up to scratch, then you will need to go back and check over everything. If you don’t, then you could find that your site starts dropping down the rankings very quickly.