Google’s continued Panda algorithm updates began rolling out at the end of July, nearly a year after the last one. This occurred much later than expected and was done slowly over a few months, rather than weeks. Continued updates are planned for the upcoming months, although many web designers and SEO experts question how long these planned updates are actually taking. In a number of interviews and statements, Google has explained what the holdup is, and what it means for any of the  trying to plan for expected algorithm changes.

Panda 4.2 Is Rolling Out… Slowly

Although it has been ten months since the last Panda update, Google finally released an additional update on July 22, 2015, which was much later than their initial target date. According to Google, even roll-out is going slower than planned, it shouldn’t be concerning. It is not being done intentionally to cause confusion; it is being done so developers can monitor certain technical issues. As a result, the update is expected to last for a while.

What This Means for Websites

As experienced SEO companies have been preparing for the changes expected from the Panda update, the delay is affecting websites in two primary ways:

  • The Positive Side – Sites that thought they would be penalized will see it affect them more slowly. This will give them a longer amount of time to analyze these initial changes and remedy them before the Panda is completed. Instead of being hit in a way that could severely affect page rank, SEO should be affected more slowly. This gives web developers time to correct site concerns before the changes.
  • The Negative Side – Sites that have made necessary updates to comply with Panda changes, or who are in the midst of making such changes, will have to wait longer to determine their effectiveness. While the positive points referenced above indicate reduced penalties and relief from losing page rank for some, seeing those changes in place – and their effect – will take longer.

Currently, Google estimates the initial installment of the Panda roll-out has negatively affected two to three percent of English websites. While this may not seem like a lot, it will take such sites longer to show any positive corrections, as the roll-out itself is delayed. It is an unfortunate that some sites will have to deal with; however, this will help prevent more problems due to an undisclosed technical issue according to Google .

What Should SEO Experts Do Now?

The best thing SEO experts can do right now is monitor page rank based on any search engine optimization changes made in anticipation of the Panda release. They should also be ready to correct any problems, if necessary. Sites that were not quite ready have been granted an extra stay. Developers should use this time wisely to bring their sites into compliance with the projected Panda changes.

With no known date as to when the full Panda 4.2 update will be ready, SEO experts should continue to watch for further news from Google to stay one step ahead. This extra time might be a good thing for most. The best SEO company need to plan for these slow changes in accordance with how the incremental updates are released. Then they must do whatever is necessary to avoid any negative effects on page rank!

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