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Google to “Soften” Panda Algorithm to Help Small Businesses Rank

It’s hard to remember a week when Google didn’t make some kind of announcement that impacted the SEO industry. Well the latest announcement came from Matt Cutts and that’s not surprising to people who follow SEO trends. According to attendees at last week’s Search Marketing Expo, Cutts said he and his search team were developing the “next generation” of the Panda algorithm update.

In case you’ve forgotten, Panda was first released in February 2011 and it targeted duplicate and low quality content. At the time it was reported the update affected nearly 12 percent of all searches, which is an astounding number. Since then other algorithm updates have affected less than 5 percent of searches.

It appears the initial Panda update was a bit harsh on non-authoritative websites, which is what many small business websites fall under. Cutts and his team are acknowledging this and now they’re making an attempt to improve their visibility in the search engine. They took a similar action back in the summer of 2013.

For the last 3 years it has been extremely difficult for small, local businesses to outrank national companies like Amazon and other major retailers. However Google’s effort to “soften” Panda is a big step forward and we hope our clients reap the benefits.

In typical Google fashion there is no word on when this softer update might happen, but we think it’ll be released within the next few months.