Google recently announced a new update to the Panda algorithm which is being deemed, Panda 4.0. Here is some useful information about algorithm updates, the Panda update and how it will affect you.
What are algorithm updates?
Google as well as other search engines continually update their search algorithms to improve search experience and provide quality results. These updates are designed to limit the ranking ability of sites that Google may deem as low quality. There are believed to be more than 200 factors that play into the algorithm and helps decide the rank of a website. These can include signals related to links, on-site content, website structure, page load time, user experience, brand mentions and much more. As Google gathers and analyzes data they will make updates to limit what they deem as lower quality sites from ranking. The efforts of SEO are designed to optimize sites for the many signals that help Google define a quality site.
It is important to keep in mind that Google isn’t perfect; there is always a level of collateral damage when updates are pushed out. Quality sites can and have lost rank due to these updates. No site is immune to updates. The intent is to work to stay within Google guidelines and adjust strategies as needed when the search landscape changes due to updates.