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Google Panda 4.0 Now Rolling Out

This is a new Panda algorithm, not a refresh that we've seen almost monthly but enough for Google to name this 4.0, which means a new algorithm update to it.
Google's Matt Cutts told us at Search Engine Land that this Panda 4.0 update impacts ~7.5% of English queries to a degree that a regular user might notice.
Also when I spoke to Matt Cutts, he made it sound like this update may appear gentler for some sites but it does lay the groundwork to future changes in the direction of a softer and gentler Panda algorithm.

This began rolling out yesterday and is unrelated to the Google Spam Algorithm 2.0released over the weekend and unrelated to anything Penguin.
So no, I was not crazy expecting something big that happened over the weekend and throughout the month and this week. Even though Google said nothing is going on, we've been seeing signs of major changes and ranking shifts all throughout the month. I suspect those were tests for both this Google Spam Algorithm version 2.0 and the Panda 4.0 release.

Did Google's Panda 4.0 Impact You?

Google began rolling out Panda 4.0 and it still may be rolling out, but by now, you should know how, if any, you were impacted by the Panda 4.0 release.
I want you all to check your analytics, filter it by Google organic traffic only and see if you see a drop, increase or no change on around May 20th and May 21st.

Why You Get Link Removal Threats

"It's not a huge surprise that some sites which went way too far spamming for links will sometimes go overboard when it's necessary to clean the spammy links up. The main thing I'd recommend for a site owner who gets a fairly large number of link removal requests is to ask "Do these requests indicate a larger issue with my site?" For example, if you run a forum and it's trivially easy for blackhat SEOs to register for your forum and drop a link on the user profile page, then that's a loophole that you probably want to close. But if the links actually look organic to you or you're confident that your site is high-quality or doesn't have those sorts of loopholes, you can safely ignore these requests unless you're feeling helpful."

Matt Cutts responds next to the claims of negative SEO:
Yes, we work to avoid this sort of attack when designing our ranking algorithms.
Ryan Moulton added the reason why so many link removal requests go out, is not just Google's fault, but the bad SEO is fired and the new one isn't sure which links are bad and good:
The most likely situation is that the company who sent the letter hired a shady SEO. That SEO did spammy things that got them penalized. They brought in a new SEO to clean up the mess, and that SEO is trying to undo all the damage the previous one caused. They are trying to remove every link they can find since they didn't do the spamming in the first place and don't know which are causing the problem.

Google Ranking on fire this Month of May 2014

Here are some recent chatter comments from the forums:
Regardless of the weather anywhere overall my lowest-ever page views at 45.7% of 2014 average with the UK at 37.4% however fortunately not as bad as Friday at 26.5%, what a mess.
i did a small analysis.. i used two of my sites and ranked purely with GSA and 10 articles scraped and smashed one was used. it got hit.
for my one another site i used 5 unique articles, spun with wordai, smashed as 1 articles with GSA.. it got hit but only 4-9 position drops.. not like first one..
so its getting clear that its penguin 3.0

Authorship Still Not Used For Rankings

John wrote:

   "Authorship only plays a role with the "in-depth-articles" feature, and otherwise has no effect on ranking in web-search at all."

Google has been hinting at working on a good guy algorithm that may use authorship and forms of author or content specific authority to promote web pages. There is a good chance that authorship in this form or future forms, may play a role in rankings. Another point is that authorship may improve your click through rate because of the extra image in the search results.
But for now, authorship, outside of the very edge case of in-depth-articles, has no role in rankings.
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