Due to the massive impact felt by many webmasters and SEO's with the first version of Penguin, many were braced for the effects of Penguin 2.0. The good news is that the impact was not felt as widely as the first version.
Due to the massive impact felt by many webmasters and SEO's with the first version of Penguin, many were braced for the effects of Penguin 2.0. The good news is that the impact was not felt as widely as the first version. The bad news is that many are still confused as to what counts as a best practice in a post Penguin 2.0 era. This does not need to be the case.
While nobody outside of a very select group of people will ever know the entire algorithm Google uses to rank pages, there are some factors that are easy to identify in light of the most recent Penguin Update. The following three points illustrate a framework for ranking well post Penguin 2.0.
Relevance Trumps PageRank
PageRank is a strong indicator of the value of a page, but high PageRank alone is not enough to indicate the value of a link. As an example, a blog about technology is going to get more value from a low PageRank link on another tech blog than they would by getting a high PageRank blog on a completely irrelevant blog.
Anchor Text Matters Less And Less
Prior to the first Penguin Update, the goal was to get as many exact match anchor text links as possible. Today, too many exact anchors can cause more harm than good. A natural link profile includes bare URLs, irrelevant anchor texts, partial match, and exact match anchor texts.
It Is All About Trust
The links that are hardest to get are the most valuable. Links that value their reputation are going to be difficult to get a link from. They don't want to provide a link that may disappoint their readers and customers.
These sites have the trust of humans, and they likely have the trust of search engines as well. If you get just a handful of links from these sites, your own trust will increase, and you will likely find it easier and easier to rank well for more competitive terms.
Links Still Rule
As a wrap up, it is important to remember that the strongest off-site ranking factor in a post Penguin 2.0 era is still the almighty link. Traffic metrics and social sharing are important, but links still provide the most value for SEO.
The key isn't just to link, but to link intelligently.