What’s black and white and known to send chills up the spines of spammers? The animals Google
chooses for its updates. Perhaps this is why the Panda Update was nicknamed the Farmer update?
The last two updates by Google featured animals that are notoriously black and white: the Panda
& the Penguin. These two animals targeted their prey – content spam and unnatural link building –
with a deadly eye. In short, these updates filtered the web with the idea that when a user searches
for a certain keyword, more relevant sites with organic links and compelling content would come up.
Before, the site you wanted may have been buried behind what Google considers to be spam.
I wonder what a spammer’s nightmare looks like; it’s probably filled with a bunch of rabid black and
white animals – zebras, skunks, Dalmatians, and the deadliest: (cue dramatic music) the killer whale.
The Panda and Penguin updates hit the SEO world hard. If your site wasn’t up to par (lacking
substantial content), it got the chop in the SERPS. The same applied to websites relying on ezine links
and other low-quality websites. But where does Google go from here? Zebra? Skunk? The ever so
adorable Dall’s Porpoise? There are only so many black and white animals to choose from, but the
hard part is figuring out what characteristics and attributes Google will apply to their animal of choice.
Let’s list a few:
The Striped Weasel is pretty similar to a Skunk in that it is awake at night and sprays a noxious fluid.
A weird thing this animal does is killing its prey by kicking and whipping its own body. It is my honest opinion that, even considering the noxious fluid, the Striped Weasel is adorable and misunderstood by the masses. Perhaps it could benefit from some reputation management. Google might utilize this animal to tackle comment spam and the rat problem that their offices have had since 1998.
Dalmatians were for a long time associated with firemen, so the Dalmatian update could quite possibly put out some spam fires.
The killer whale, also known as the orca, is adorable to look at but it’s quite the hunter. This mammal
seems most likely to succeed Penguin as the new Google update. This is probably because Google
started with a land animal, then transitioned to an animal that also does a lot of swimming; so the
next logical step would be an animal that spends all of its time underwater, carefully planning its
The European Badger is nocturnal and elusive, but quite social. They average in packs of six, and those groups are formed without the help of social media! They live in underground tunnel systems that can be centuries old. I’m not sure what that will do but that sounds like most users on the Internet….
The Bald Eagle is also black and white, but I don’t think Google would use this patriotic bird as a
symbol to instill fear in a spammer’s heart. I’d much prefer to see a big, bold Bald Eagle badge on my
site if it adheres to the best SEO practices of Google. Google: Supporting white-hat SEO, and America,
one badge at a time.
Zebra update – that update just sounds like an increased speed from the panda. A panda isn’t slow,
but it’s not nearly as fast as a zebra. Google would be crawling pages at epic zebra-like speeds. What’s
that? You changed your title tags? Well hop on this striped beast and let’s reflect those changes in the
SERPs in .387 seconds!
The Holstein Cow is the typical black and white cow. Its color pattern is due to the artificial selection
of breeders. With that in mind, Google could utilize this animal for a new algorithm that filters sites
based off of how well they generate dairy (read: money).
Whether Google chooses a bird, mammal or something else (personally rooting for Killer Whale
Update 2013), it’s going to be another piece of big news for the Internet.