Did Google Release Penguin 3.1 On Thanksgiving?

Nov 28, 2014 • 8:27 am | comments (163) by | Filed Under Google Search Algorithm Updates

Google Penguin 3.1 Thanksgiving TurkeyI can't believe what I am seeing and hearing - a Google Penguin refresh that hit on Thanksgiving, Black Friday weekend? No way!

Update: Google has confirmed that this is a result of the ongoing Penguin 3.0 release. Read more over here.

Google would actually release an update on Thanksgiving weekend, the busiest shopping weekend all year round? Google has told us time and time again, they wouldn't push out major updates during busy holiday seasons. So this cannot be true.

Google has not confirmed it but the black hat forums are going nuts about Penguin recoveries over Thanksgiving day.

We have dozens of threads at Black Hat World on the topic, tons sharing their stats and ranking changes for sites hit by the Penguin 3.0 release. We even have discussion on WebmasterWorld and Twitter on this pattern over Thanksgiving day.

I've been trying to get confirmation from Google since yesterday late morning, but they are all offline for the Thanksgiving weekend. Which makes this even more surprising, who at Google would have pushed this out on a holiday? Was this a mistake? Is this some weird bug webmasters and SEOs are seeing?

Check out Goralewicz blog for some of what he reported on the changes. The data is there to show significant changes.

The WebmasterWorld administrator even wrote:

We may have a refresh going on right now. Anyone with Penguin 3 penalties care to report.

I'm also seeing too much clustering in the SERPs right now.

Goralewicz wrote:

Today, while checking my customer’s rankings; I noticed a huge pattern of movement in websites belonging to my customers. Basically, sites that we were trying to recover after Penguin 3.0.

Virtually all these guys are seeing recoveries on their Penguin sites. I don't see many complaining about being hit by Penguin as a negative hit but mostly recoveries. So this would be a nice Thanksgiving treat for those who were hit but for all those who rank higher now, someone must rank lower.

Did you notice changes in your Penguin sites and data?

Could Google have dared to update Penguin on Thanksgiving day?

Forum discussion at Black Hat World, WebmasterWorld and Twitter.

Update: Google has confirmed that this is a result of the ongoing Penguin 3.0 release. Read more over here.

Image credit to BigStockPhoto for Penguin serving turkey

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