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This question is being asked for those who are NOT up to date with Google's updates.
SEO Pro's, PLEASE answer in layman's terms as best as you can.
What are Penguins and Pandas???
thanks for asking , i was going to ask this question myself , you made it easy for me .... will keep an open eye for answers here
Google has spiders which crawl sites on internet to determine quality of sites, number of backlinks, quality of backlinks, content and other aspect which are necessary for giving sites rankings in search results and so on.
Those spiders have algorithms, which tell them what to look for and how to evaluate those SEO attributes. Example: If you have article on your site and someone copies it in the future, spiders will know that is duplicated content and won't give them as much authority in search results.
Penguin and Panda were nothing but algorithm updates, most powerful updates in 8 years. Their focus is to prevent to have spammed sites in top Google search results and to penalize sites which use blackhat SEO techniques.
Panda came first, it is focused on site's content, it searches for poor content, duplicated content, copied content, poorly spun, etc.
Penguin analyses backlinks, it tries to determine which backlinks were made with spammy blackhat techniques and which ones are quality.
So after those 2 updates, rankings in Google changed drastically. Much of legit sites with natural and legit SEO made on them lost their rankings, because no algorithm can replicate human behavior.
I have been reading so many discussions about Google Updates and what it can do to the site in general. But I am confused because there are so many versions of the story. The majority of discussions point to the sanction that can happen to a site that is doing black hat SEO methods. There are a couple of discussions that say Google Updates are changes in the algorithm and has nothing to do with what we are doing on our site regarding SEO methods. It is really confusing.