Google’s Penguin algorithm has been a core part of the search engines efforts to fight spam and low-quality content for years, but it has always been its own thing. The algorithm ran separate from Google’s core algorithm and was refreshed periodically. But that is all changing.

Starting today, Penguin is running in real-time as part of Google’s primary algorithm in all languages.

What Does This Mean?

In the past, the Penguin algorithm has been relatively static. When it was updated or refreshed, it would dish out penalties and remove penalties from those who had gone successfully gone through the reconsideration process. The only problem was these updates were sporadic, at best. In fact, the last update was over 700 days ago.

By turning Penguin into a real-time part of its algorithm, Google is speeding up the entire system so penalties can be given when a site is flagged and those who have resolved their problems can lose their penalty more quickly.

According to Google, Penguin can now make changes in roughly the same period of time it takes the search engine to crawl and re-index a page.

What Else Is Changing?

While the speed of Penguin is the biggest change as it becomes part of the core algorithm, there are some other small tweaks to how it works.

Penguin is now more targeted, only penalizing specific pages with that break link guidelines. Google Penguin used to punish the entire site for containing pages containing spammy link building practices, but now it will only devalue the individual pages.

Google is also making some changes to how it talks about Penguin in the public. Or, as the company stated, “We’re not going to comment on future refreshes.”

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