|Scooped by Sylvain Richard|
"Every year, Google quietly releases hundreds of refinements to their search engine algorithms. Most of these updates are small, incremental changes that go largely unnoticed. The major upgrades, however, receive serious coverage by mainstream news outlets and bloggers alike due to the momentous impact that they have on the broader web at every level.
Though more than a year has passed since its inaugural rollout, the effects of the infamous Panda update of 2011 are still being felt today. Impacting nearly 12% of web search queries right out of the gate, it was responsible for traffic declines at websites both large and small in a matter of hours. To fully understand how the latest Google updates work and why they were necessary, some history is in order.Why Google’s Panda Algorithm Was Released
Essentially, Panda was a direct response by Google to the weak content of spammers and fly-by-night marketers. For years, shifty SEO specialists exploited vulnerabilities in Google’s quality-assessment algorithms, which led to a proliferation of highly-optimized but ultimately weak web pages that still managed to dominate the top SERPs spots for many queries. Combating so-called content farms required a serious show of force.
To this end, Google employed thousands of human testers to manually rate sites based on their user experience, value and relevance. In addition, Panda’s under the hood innovations began to incorporate quite a bit of Latent Semantic Indexing or LSI to leverage the power of related keywords for greater search results quality..."