How To Recover from Google Panda Effect – Definite Guide

Google Panda was one of the most controversial algorithm update from Google, but with time it helped a lot to remove low-quality websites from search engine and overall it improved the quality of search results. Though for many webmasters, Google Panda updates are still a headache and at unknowingly many good websites lost their search engine ranking due to Panda penalty.  If you are one of those bloggers who lost their web site traffic after latest Google panda algorithm update roll out,  Here I will be sharing tested tips to recover from Google Panda.

Recover From Google Panda

Before we move ahead with panda recovery tips, I would like you to know Google Panda is a domain level penalty. What I mean is, if earlier you’ve had low-quality content, it was your content that was penalized, but now if you have low-quality content, your complete domain will be penalized. One of the simplest ways to get rid of Panda penalty is by getting rid of low-quality content. I will do a separate post for identifying low-quality posts but here I will give you a brief idea that will help you get started with the recovery process.

We all know that Google rolled out the Google Panda algo globally, and you might also have noticed many bloggers talking about a traffic increase or significant traffic drop. We always talk about SEO optimization of blog posts and since the Google Panda algorithm it’s become mandatory to do proper SEO on the site level and content level. In this post I will be talking about how to recover from Google Panda effect, and what you can do to better optimize your blog for the Google search engine, so that your blog will be bullet-proof from future Google Panda updates in 2015 and the coming years. Panda is just an algorithm iteration, and as Matt Cutt, mentioned, now sites will also get penalized for over SEO optimization. So, I would suggest avoiding any black hate SEO (If you are doing it), and focus more on quality content and increasing your site’s social media presence. In particular, Google+1 is going to be a holy grail for bloggers in the future.

Update: I have updated this article with new tips that I implemented on my websites and have seen good recovery over time. Here is a screenshot of the same.

Google panda recovery tips

Before I move ahead with Google Panda recovery tips, let me tell you something about ShoutMeLoud traffic. ShoutMeLoud was affected by the Google Panda algorithm, and the traffic drop was around 60%. I have always taken care of SEO, but at the initial days of blogging, when I was new to blogging, most of my content was short and of low quality. We will look into a couple more factors that lead to Panda penalty for this site and other sites in my network. One thing, in particular, Google Panda taught me was  about the importance of keywords, and why you need to have a target keyword in a post. Just for the info, in this process I recovered the traffic but as I mentioned, recovery was not 100%. Slowly it’s increasing, and by ranking for target keyword now I’m getting more targeted visitors.

As I mentioned above, Google Panda is a domain level penalty, so even a couple of bad content/posts can affect your overall blog ranking. The very first step you need to do is figure out thin content or content that doesn’t add much value. For example, in the initial days of my blogging, I usually wrote posts with 30-50 words with one image and a link. Something, which I can say doesn’t add much value to readers. I guess, this is the same dilemma with others too.

Often I found out I had much low-quality contents, thereby, I had a couple of choices: no-index them, delete them or update them with detailed information to make it a quality content, so that it would be helpful and useful to readers.

Anyways, before you find out more about recovering from the Google Panda algorithm change, first understand what kind of website Google Panda is going to affect.

  • A website with low quality (Thin content)
  • A website that works as content farm
  • A website with useless pages indexed in Google (Same as content farm)
  • A website with improper SEO structure
  • Duplicate content (On-site and off-site)
  • Too many advertisements
  • Poor grammar
  • Slow site loading time
  • SEO over-optimization (Black hat SEO)

One easy way to find out if your site traffic drop is the result of Panda or something else is by analyzing traffic drop dates and matching it with the Panda update dates here

Here are some of the most common reasons for Panda penalty:

  • Low-quality content: Too short, not well researched.
  • Poor grammar (Still working on it) Sigh!
  • Ad/content ratio
  • Too many broken links (404 links)
  • Less CTR from Search engines (Poor meta title, weak meta description)

There could be other factors, but these are something that needed instant attention. Most of the broken links and redirects were quickly fixed by the Broken link checker WordPress plugin.

Now before we move ahead, here are some factors you should know about Google panda:

  • It’s a domain level penalty.
  • A few low-quality posts can drop overall domain ranking.
  • Google trust quality sites.
  • Google Panda lowers down overall ranking of low-quality sites.
  • On-site SEO optimization becomes important.
  • The quality of a post is taken as a prime factor for ranking.
  • Niche based websites are better than generic sites.
So let me be honest. There is no way to get 100% of your traffic back by keeping the same content, but with a good strategy you can recover from Panda penalty and drive more traffic than what you had.

How to find out if the Google Panda algo affected your website?

This is the first thing that you should be doing as webmaster. The recent Panda update was rolled out on 23rd September 2014, go to your analytics and see the graphs for the date mentioned above and compare it with last 10 days. If you see a significant drop or rise in traffic, that means your website is getting the hiccups of the Google Panda effect. You can also use this link to sign up for a free-trial account of SEMRUSH, and there you can see the increase or decrease in your keyword ranking. (See below screenshot)

ShoutMeLoud traffic graph Panda

So if you are one of those who are seeing an increase in traffic, it’s time to take a break! Grab a coffee or have gala time with your friends. But if you are one of those who were affected by the Panda effect, I suggest reading this post seriously, as you need to work really hard to recover from Panda effect.

Steps to recover from Google Panda updates:

Write quality content:

I’m sure you’re tired of being told “Write quality content and traffic will follow you”. When I say write quality content, it means write a complete post along with targeted keywords. Your post should be optimized for certain keywords and should not be just a random post. A quality post written without any targeted keywords is a useless post. You might get praise and lots of appreciation, but people won’t be able to find it in the search engine after some time.

Google takes quality and length very seriously and there are certain things which you should keep in mind including the word count of your blog post. For example, a post like “How to recover from Google Panda” can be written in 5 simple steps, or could be written in detailed how-to guide like this. Now, we know which one a reader would prefer, but what about a search engine? When you write a detailed article, you cover more keywords and especially you add more information into your post. According to an SEO debunked study, articles with longer length ranks fairly well. I have even tested and verified this after I optimized many old blog posts.

LSI words:

Here is food of thought: How do you think a search engine rank a content? Search engines uses algorithms to decide post ranking. How do you think a search engine will give you exact results for your search query? Here is where LSI words comes into picture, which helps search engines to understand exact categories for your article. Along with that, you use bold, italics, Keyword in H1, H2 and H3 tag to make your content more search engine targeted. You should maintain a certain ratio for Keywords density. I know it all sounds hard but look at the screenshot below.

Panda recovered Blog

I use a Premium plugin call SEOPressor to optimize my blog posts. To avoid over optimization, I usually keep the optimization ratio around 70%, and it’s working great for me. Here is the search engine position of one of the post after using this plugin:

There are many other similar SEO plugin like this available:  Prefer using a plugin that gives you on-page SEO score and keyword density score. This will certainly help in long run.

Remove unnecessary pages/posts from Google search:


The very first step is to see what all pages or  posts are part of Google, search from your domain. In the past, it was good to have more indexed pages but now it’s important to have only important pages and posts. Useless posts or pages just becomes a part of search engine and doesn’t add values.

Especially if you have your tags indexed in Google, you might like to no index it, as Tags and categories doesn’t help search engine much. Imagine you used 6 tags within a post and have written 100 posts. 100*6 =600 tags (Assumption) and now your tags are indexed in Google, imagine 600 low-quality pages being a part of search engine, which will make your blog look like content farm or at least website with low-quality content. Same goes with contact pages, disclaimer, privacy policy, newsletter page, which doesn’t add much value to the search engine. You might like to use noindex tag for such links. You can search all indexed pages for your domain by typing Site:Yourdomain in

Don’t forget to go to the last page and click on show omitted results. As Google put possible duplicate and low quality content from any domain under 2nd tier results.

You can use plugin like Meta robots WordPress SEO Plugin to make your category/tags/date archive pages as noindex. Another tip which you should keep in mind: Always keep your internal links as Dofollow. Google suggests you to use noindex tag when you don’t want bots to index any page/post and Robots.txt to stop crawling admin and private part of a website.


You can do a quick search in Google with “” to find out what all pages are indexed in Google from your domain. Replace with real domain name.

If your blog wp-content and wp-admin links are indexed in Google, simply use Google Webmaster URL removal tool and get rid of the complete directory. Make sure to add those directories into your Robots.txt file.

Remove Low quality content:

Now in the past you might have written posts which are not well written, very short or may be not targeted. Google is taking low quality content very seriously and therefore you should start working on your old low quality posts and convert them into high quality article. At least work on SEO details and length of the article. This will also help you in internal linking of your old posts with new one. Personally every day, I spend 1-2 hour to work on old posts and make them better. Even if you are not hit by Panda effect, you should do it to make your blog look better and give more quality to your readers.

Now the most common question would be what is low quality content. There is no 100% guide for low quality content, but here are some guidelines for the same:

  • Is it useful for readers?
  • Is it well researched?
  • Is content comes from a trustable source?
  • How likely customer is willing to give credit card details?

And many more other factors. But for now, here are my brief guide to find low quality content on your site:

  • In Google analytic, find all posts which got <10 visits in 2 months time. Now analyze content of the post and see if it’s useful and relevant.  Depending upon the post, you can update or delete or noindex it.
  • Find all articles with no Google traffic & optimize it.
  • Find all posts that are giving bounce rate higher than 85%. Work on them to lower down bounce rate. You can use these techniques to improve the bounce rate.
  • Install Admin word count WordPress plugin and analyze traffic of posts with word count <250. Take appropriate action depending upon the post.

Duplicate content:

Google takes duplicate content seriously even if it’s on your domain or cross posted on other site. Too many duplicate content will affect your search engine presence for sure. Work on each and every detail  of your site structure and SEO and make sure you are not serving any duplicate content. As I mentioned above, Google takes plagiarism seriously but the algo is not mature to really figure out difference between original and copied content, you need to work manually to fight against plagiarism. Also make sure you are using URL canonicalization.

Though Google claims that their new Content farm algo is perfect to fight against Auto RSS content generation blog but to be honest I really doubt it. Specially for CallingAllgeeks, , I have seen many auto blogs are copying content but they are ranking better than original article itself. More over because of this, many posts are getting deindexed from web search. The only solution to this is a fight against plagiarism.

You should taking plagiarism seriously and as soon as you see any website copying your content, you can report it to Google team. Initially I used to ignore such blogs which used to copy content, but these days I actively report them to Google and so far in last 15 days, I have put request to remove 50+ such pages from Google index and from BlogSpot. So far 75% of my request has been successfully reviewed and copied URL’s are removed from Google. You should straight away file a DMCA notice or ask the webmaster to remove the content instantly. Missing this point will create post duplication issue, and more over you might see other site is stealing your hard work and traffic.

Bonus tip: When you find out all your low quality content, find all copied posts using these online Anti plagiarism tools and report it to Google. I have seen many of such posts started getting traffic, once all copied content are removed.

Learn SEO:

If you are into professional blogging  or planning to take blogging as career, you should learn SEO first. Without SEO, your future will remain unpredictable, as one major algo change can take away everything from you. Once you know basics of SEO, you can be ready for any algo changes and tweak your website to meet new changes. Here are few things which you should start with:

SEO friendly WordPress Theme:

I have started my blogging career with free WordPress themes but with time I realized premium WordPress themes are way better than free WordPress theme. If you are using a free WordPress theme, you should check your theme for proper heading tags and if this theme is SEO friendly or not. Or else, make your life simpler and use Genesis theme. Especially, if you are not much of SEO guy, you can install these theme and make your blog more SEO friendly. Make sure you put noindex attributes for tabs, categories and all useless pages using Thesis options panel or Genesis option panel. If you still can’t afford premium themes, I would suggest you to start using plugins like Robots meta to add noindex to all useless pages of your blog.

Social media promotion:

Alright, this is something which I’m sure many of you must be missing and believe me social media promotion really helps. Eespecially Google+ votes, Facebook likes, Twitter and Delicious worked for me great time to boost my ranking. Though Twitter helps in faster indexing and that’s it.

You can always start with social media promotion by creating own group on Facebook or on IM. Else, you can hire any 3rd party sites which offer such services. I have optimized my old posts for specific Keyword and then promoting them into these social media sites. I can see huge ranking improvement and you can try the same for any of your blog post too.

External links:

If you are one of those who are selling paid links or doing paid reviews about anything, you should stop doing it. Linking to bad neighbourhood will significantly make difference in your search engine ranking. If for any reason you need to link to any bad site, use nofollow attributes. Same goes for an affiliate URL. Though Google doesn’t give much weight to nofollow attributes, but it does make a difference. It’s a myth that too many external links will affect your ranking, if you are linking to legit and useful content it’s ranking will not go down or will not be affected. So you have to take an extra precaution when you are linking to other sites, especially if you are running a multi-author blog, you should make sure that link or guest post is coming from bloggers in the similar or relevant niche.

MFA or Affiliate blog:

If you run a money-making online blog, you’re probably  using lots of ads and affiliate links. Top contributors on a Webmaster forum have said that too many ads on a page give  out a signal of a low quality website. Also if you run a blog for affiliate marketing with less original content, you are more likely to be affected by this algorithm. You should try to use fewer ads on a page, and eespecially no ads in between a post. Also for affiliate links, strictly use nofollow links.

How to put reconsideration request after SEO change?

So you got affected by Google panda and your traffic dropped. I hope by now, you have made the changes on your blog, now to make it more search engine friendly get rid of low quality pages. Once you are done with all the essential changes, it’s time to login to webmaster tool and put a reconsideration request. Though it takes time but it’s the best thing which you can do now. Here is the link to reconsideration page of Google. Though, in most of the cases you will get a reply from Google saying your site is not penalized and there is no penalty, as new Panda algorithm is not a penalty but a new way to rank website in search engine.

Bonus tip: 

If in search meta description your date is showing, chances are high you will get very low CTR for old ever green post. I have removed post date from 2 of my websites and I could see improved CTR. More over, one of tech blog which was badly hurt recovered really fast after date removal from search snippets. Also if you are running a review site, like a gadget review, make sure to install GD star rating plugin and enable star rating. This will again help in improved CTR from Google search. Needless, to mention Google authorship, which is going to make everything very social.


Following changes worked for me to recover from Google panda effect:

  • Removed data from search engine snippets
  • Removed all Broken links
  • Removed un-necessary pages from search (Noindex or 404)
  • Keyword optimization for all old posts (Improved the quality with updated info)
  • Social media promotion after Keyword optimization (Google+, Delicious, Digg)
  • Removed duplicate content
  • URL Canonicalization ( replytocom, feedburner links)
Apart from all the above, I have also taken care of more SEO optimization on-site and backlink building. Moreover, my backlink building was more targeted for internal pages instead of just homepage. I’m not sure if ads actually helps to lower down panda effect because I have seen many site with above average ad/content ratio ranking fairly well. Keyword targeting is must and highly recommended post panda.

Thoughts about Panda:

If you have read the Matt’s interview regarding farmer algorithm, you must have noticed his statement in which he said “Google’s most recent algorithm contains signals that can be gamed”. In simple words, this means you can optimize your site to take full advantage of the Google Panda algorithm.

One thing that everyone should remember is that Google doesn’t update site manually. It’s only a set of algorithms which follow certain rules. If you are following guidelines, there is no way that your site will be affected by any algorithm change. It is now becoming an essential for every blogger to know SEO basics.

If you were affected by the Panda algorithm and are trying to recover, follow all the above steps. It might take some time before Google will re-crawl and re-index your website, but once it does, you might get lucky and get back your lost traffic.

Update: You can hire me for personal SEO coaching and consulting, in which I will review your site and will help you to recover it from panda updates. You can find more details here.

Let us know if you were a victim of Google panda? What recovery measures are you taking to recover from Google Panda? Don’t forget to subscribe to our free Email updates.

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Article By
Harsh Agrawal is a blog scientist and a passionate blogger. He is blogging since 2008 & writes about Blogging, SEO, Make money online & tech. His blog, ShoutMeLoud receives 1 million Pageviews/month and have over 700K subscribers.


COMMENTs ( 134 )

  1. jeff says

    Dude !!
    Im loving your blog , its keeps popping up in search when i search for seo stuff ans bogging , you must be doing something right.
    Awesome blog , love your this post for panda fixes
    jeff from Australia

  2. Karri Avinash says

    @Qasim: I think if you remove date from the post breadcrumbs in your post page, then it automatically gets removed in Search rankings. For eg. search for “windows 8 elevated mode” on my site and you’ll see no date in the search rankings.

  3. Kamal says

    Hey harsh,If you can see my blog address.can you tell me if my word count on my blog posts is enough or less?this is the question that stuck to my mind after creating any post.and should i use nofollow tag for my internal post links or not?and i read that we should use nofollow tag for external links if they are not trusted. . . .can u tell me which site comes under nofollow category?Please give me examples of few site names which we should use nofollow.i get confused while placing link in my post whether to put it as nofollow or not as don’t know the trusted site?

  4. Nikhil Saliya says

    When My website was affected By Panda update, My website’s Previews was 2500 and decreased to 200 . Non of them Was from Google.
    But It recovered automatically.
    I didn’t done anything.
    Is time helps to Recover From Panda updates?

  5. Mani says

    I have read your post very carefully (almost an hour), and simultaneously taken a lot of action in removing useless content from my site. I just hope that my site ( traffic recovers from Google’s latest 3.9 update! My traffic has gone down to almost 10% of what it was and there is immense loss.

  6. Selina says

    hi, I went for two years on a and just switched to a .com (went through bloggers set up because it was easy, just click a button and pay 10 yr) Does that mean that all my blog is now a duplicate post!! Is there a way to be sure I don’t get penalized?

    any thought or tips would be helpful. thank you

    • says

      You need to take care of many things like 301 redirection..Fixing permalinks as BlogSpot and WordPress handles permalink differently… Your old blogSpot links should redirect to posts on WordPress with new domain..!!
      You can also use Cache images plugin to import all images to WordPress….
      And if it’s not a proper redirection…. Yes, your posts are duplicate post. Let me know if you have any more questions or need any service related to migration.

      • Karri Avinash says

        Harsh, I think Selina is talking about “custom domain” on blogspot. So I think there should NOT be any duplicate issue if you follow the standard practice.

  7. Hiren Modi says

    Today, I was searching for How much time Google will take to De-Index 301 redirected pages on Google. And, I come to know about your blog post. It’s quite interesting. I have big concern with duplicate page Title & meta Description which creates via 301 redirect.

    I want to give one example to know more about it. I have changed URLs for 11,000 product pages and set up 301 redirect from OLD URLs to NEW URLs. Google have crawl and index my new product pages and quite slower to De-Index my old product pages. It creates duplicate page Title & meta Description issue which I have found in Google webmaster tools.

    Is there any method which help me to increase De-Indexing ration for 301 redirected pages?

  8. Lucy says

    Love this blog – great info – only thing I feel is missing is DATES.
    With all these algo updates, etc – it’s really important to know the date a post and comments were written, to judge relevancy, etc.
    Lately, things change so rapidly, it’s hard to know which update you are talking about (there have been so many panda updates, and now penguin updates), so dates would really help.

  9. Navin Kunwar says

    I was using transposh (translating plugin like gtrans) in one of the blog. now after Google panda update, i have removed all the translated pages and redirected all 404 pages to home using 303 redirect. how much time does google takes to deindex those pages ? should i index tags or not ?

  10. Craig Hamilton-Parker says

    Hi Harsh

    Excellent guidance and good to hear you are on the mend from Panda. My site was very badly hit – down from 15,000 hits a day to about 2,000 now and still struggling.

    I have done all of the things you have suggested – though the site used to be thousands of pages of unique content mainly from my published books. A lot was copied and I must have sent in thousands of DMCA complaints now.

    But on the question of thin content. Have you or other visitors any idea if having a vBulleten forum on a site can bring it down? As well as having many content pages I have a community but posts on forums are often thin and more like social interaction rather than discussion. I wonder if community sites in general have been hit by Panda and if so is it wise to remove forums? (the forums are on a sub domain and I have removed about 80% of the evergreen content to new domains or sub domains)

    From my perspective Panda has been a disaster – my site used to be able to genuinely help people and had years of work put into it writing good content. I even had Vince Cable write to Google on my behalf saying how Panda was destroying legitimate content sites and with it many small businesses.

    If you have any tips from looking at my website I’d appreciate advice as I’m at the end of my tether with it!


    • says

      If you go through Webmaster forum, you would realize websites (user generated content), which is not highly moderated for example vBulletin Forum in your case are impacted after panda update. Reason being too many pages and thin content. Though, if it’s on sub domain it won’t create much difference to main domain but if you are talking about fixing your forum after Panda: You need to work hard by removing low quality content (thin content).
      Instead of removing use Noindex tag and use Google webmaster tool to remove it from search index…Also here are few things which might be helpful, since yours is user driven community:
      1) Implement Google+ everywhere…
      2) Work on backlink building from high authority sources. Probably Guest posting is something which you can consider.
      3) Work on your site design: No sitemap available, Very less Call to action

      I landed on your site and one thing which is missing is Onpage optimization: H2, H3 Tag, LSI and Keyword density.
      Also, check on your bounce rate as I believe it’s going to be high because there is no/less internal linking, related posts are missing.
      Kindly go through following two posts:

      If you re still unclear and need to learn all this thing on One-on-One basis, you can consider opting for my Blog & SEO consultancy program:

  11. Sagar says

    I’m very badly affected by the last Panda update, traffic down by 40%. I’ve removed all AdSense blocks above the fold except one which stays below the title. Hope to recover soon. Thanks for the wonderful article Harsh :)

  12. DHost says

    Hi Hrash
    Thanks for this excellent article. I want to discus some things. I have not used duplicate content for my web site . so way my site got hit hard by panda. I want to increase traffic on my web site. just tell me how can i increase traffic on my web site, according to rules of Google panda. or how can i see our duplicate content on Google. please revert me back.


  13. Jim Luthra says

    I think I am too a victim of this. My rankings in google and google images was awesome and I used to get more than 6000 pageviews per day and since January, My pageviews have dropped by 55-60% and My first page results are gone. Do you think that above tips will help me recover?

    • says

      Jim I just had a quick look at your blog and realize many pages (Low quality) Archives, add the top of it, I can see many duplicate post meta title in search..
      You can do a search in Google with
      You need to work hard to recover from Panda.
      Try to give more SEO structure to your blog and better move to WordPress, which will give you better advantage in terms of SEO control. Since you are using custom domain, it won’t be any issue for you. But, alternatively you can take my professional help for migration:

      • Jim Luthra says

        Thanks for replying Harsh, Can you please give me examples of low quality posts in my blog since I can’t distinguish. Please guide me for SEO Practices.
        And can you please tell me How can I fix duplicate Title tags. I really wanted to migrate to WordPress but I am afraid that I’ll lose traffic since my domain is still active. Please help me

  14. Paula says

    Interesting article; in much more detail than the average Panda-article, which Google should like. :-) (And I like it too)

    I have two questions:
    1) You mention that traffic is now up. But as far as I know, there was no Panda update in December. So why the recovery do you think?
    2) I notice that your comments section does not include dates. Does that have to do with avoiding a penalty for old content in the future?

    • Zenil Shroff says

      What i feel is that there is absolutely no penicillin yet invented to deal with Panda or blah blah algo. What we need to do is too keep experimenting with our sites according to Webmaster Guidelines provided by Google.

      Bcoz if you’re manipulating your content today bcoz of present algo, then in future what if google starts considering your previous manipulated content as content created for “SE’s”??

      The simple point is to try and stick to basics and write content for readers without caring for SE’s.

    • says

      1) There was one minor update at the end of dec 2011 and one in January 2012. Though nothing major apart from Google page layout algo change. Which penalizes the blog with too many ads above the content.
      2) Dates were removed for the same reasons, but I will be adding dates in image format to avoid confusion among readers.
      Do let me know if you have more questions.

  15. Neel says

    Hello Harsh,

    This was a brilliant post. I have a small question. How to judge the quality of post in a picture blog?

  16. Gary says

    This a good post and all of this makes sense, but I have heard of some websites that took serious dives in the google rankings after the panda update with one thing in common: Their link diversity was poor. There was an uneven distribution of backlinks across domains. Did you have any problems as such?

  17. Vamsi says

    I was here after a really long time, with a reason though. I think I was hit by google panda or Google’s ‘Farmer’ Algorithm what ever they call it. Your article made me think. Some of the tips were too good for me and I never even thought about it before.

    Thanks for the post, you are doing a really great job old friend!!

  18. Gagan says

    Dear Harsh,

    Nice to read your article. But there is one thing I would like to comment on. Your two websites i.e (i) (ii) have lost all the traffic after Google Panda Update.

    On CallingAllGeeks you once had more than 3.5 Lakhs page views per month and now it has left only with 85,000

    On you once had more than 2 Lakh page views per month and now it has left only with 105000 page views.

    Its so ridiculous that you yourself has not recovered from Google Panda and yet you are giving advice to your readers to recover from Panda. I suggest you to share your own experience on this blog rather than writing the same thing that other are writing.

    I could have appreciated your articles if your blog could have recovered from Panda.

    • says

      Hey Gagan
      Thanks for your comment and I understand your point on taking my blog as an example, and I would have appreciated if you have read the article completely and then commented.
      1) 100% traffic recovery is too tough after panda penalizes your blog.
      2) My site traffic is recovering and already posted a screen for the same:
      None the less, you can get the stats again from where you have taken now.
      Though, I completely understand your concern and let me reiterate my points here:

      As I mentioned to recover from panda we have to remove low quality content first. That means, for posts which you were getting traffic before panda, you won’t… So traffic will never be the same..Since in this process you will remove many posts…
      Though it will help to remove domain level penalty..!!

      Regarding traffic recovery: The best way is re-optimize your old post for certain keyword instead of let Google find random Keyword and place you in 3rd-4th page..
      I have been doing from last 1-2 months and my stats clearly shows that..!!
      This article was written based on personal experience and method which I implied and helped me recover..!!
      If any point doesn’t make sense to you..I would appreciate you can point it out and we can discus on that.

      • Zenil Shroff says

        Hello Harsh,
        There has been good spike in traffic during christmas days on my site too, but after 1st January it got back to normal, I would like to know if that is the case with you too.

  19. Palla Ramarao says

    Hi Harsh,
    You’ve mentioned the following in your post.

    ” In Google analytic, find all posts which got <10 visits in 2 months time. Now analyze content of the post and see if it’s useful and relevant. Depending upon the post, you can update or delete or noindex it."

    But if I delete all the posts with <10 visits in the last 2 months (i.e Nov and Dec 2011), will they effect the traffic of other posts? For eg. I've some posts on Windows 7 on my website. So, by deleting <10 visits Windows 7 posts will they effect the high traffic Windows 7 posts?

    Also, I'm not effected by the Panda Update till now. But my traffic is not increasing even after writing new "genuine" posts. Should I still continue doing what you mentioned in this post? Please help and answer!

    • says

      My apology for delayed reply:
      1) Post which is not getting any traffic is not always low quality content. There could be many factors which include:
      Unoptimized content
      No backlinks
      No Social media votes

      I would suggest you to identify content which is completely outdated and see if you are getting any traffic or not. If those posts/topics are completely gone and out, you can consider adding noindex tag or deleting them and putting a removal request using Webmaster tool.
      Finding low quality content is little tough and need great attention, I ‘m working on a Blog post to identify low quality content and how to regain ranking for them.

  20. Dheeraj Bansal says

    I believe the only way to escape out of Google panda update effect is to improve Content Quality, work on canonical URLs, density of top keywords should be exactly 3-4%. These three things will definitely work as Miracle for every blog, effected by Panda update.

    • says

      @Dheeraj Yes, quality content will play great role but just Keyword density won’t help alone..
      To get better ranking: Use proper title tag and make your content social…More Google+, Tweets and social bookmarking submissions… none the less, Backlinks are very helpful… Thanks for your useful comment.

  21. Sinbad says

    wow…nicely and detailed descrived and helped me more what i didn’t know …thanks and will try to my site :)

  22. Jarret says

    Hi Harsh, when Panda first came out, my site got hit pretty hard. I used your original tips to remove excess dup by no indexing category, tag, and date archives and it rebounded incredibly well.
    However, I seem to have been hit again more recently. My search traffic has dropped 50% since October!
    One thing I can’t seem to figure out is how to no-index sub-pages of author archives. I’ve noticed that page 6 etc of various author archives are showing up in search. I use SEO Ultimate and I can flat-out just no-index all author archives, but I would prefer to keep the first page of author archives indexed. Any ideas?

  23. Zenil Shroff says

    I must congratulate you Harsh for spending lot of time after research and writing this post. But what i find contradictory is that Google says “Write content for Users and not for search engines”. So if we try to artificially optimize our posts by manipulating keywords and its density then its all still a gamble bcoz one day Google will also consider this as part of Panda.

    As far as recovering from panda is concerned, i agree that tag pages, archives and category pages should be de-indexed and bloggers must show snippets on category and archive pages instead of full posts.

  24. Rakesh Narang says

    Not too many people in the blogosphere are there to write good content, they are blogging to make good money. Google wants their search results to beneficial, and I think Panda is justified, though my traffic dropped, but my high quality unique posts are still getting hundred of visitors per day.

    • says

      I completely agree with you Rakesh. Infact Panda update came at the right time for many, as it’s clear now: Blogs with quality content and social media reach will get the max benefit. Which is morally not right but not wrong too.
      As, we will see many quality results but this will also degrade quality posts with no optimization and no social media reach. But, anyways this makes Blogging little tough, but if we think as a professional Blogging, it’s now more controlled and we are seeing better quality. Infact, after Panda update, I started working on quality posts here are ShoutMeLoud, and I could see great difference in interaction and quality of comments I’m seeing here.

  25. Ashish says

    Well I think sometimes even after doing all these things your domain penalty will not go away so someone said write about trying with a new domain name…

  26. Dean Saliba says

    I’m probably one of the few people who has seen their traffic make a considerable increase since Panda was rolled out. I hope it continues. :)

  27. Vicky Sadhu says

    i like to add in this that, your status in our FB group, about Google panda recovery,which worked BEST for me! as you said, i updated my low traffic post in my blog, and guess what, the lowest traffic post is most clicked POST in my blog!! so conclsion is, Updating OLD post is One more method to recover from Google Panda! thanks Harsh, for Such a nice Help! :)

  28. Vishal says

    Hi Harsh,

    This is really a great article, also read all your posts related to panda on HBB and other blogs, inspired me a lot. I have done too many changes today and I am still working on it.

    Many thanks to you.

  29. al says

    Got affected by rss feed that make me got too many links from one domain. Trying to recover now. Thanks for your post.

  30. Amir Nasir says

    Hello harsh, panda update made everyone sad but it made me happy because i found more than 200% increase in traffic on my blog as per analytics report

  31. sanjeev says

    This really helped me as i was the one to suffer from the Panda update..i will surely make some changes as you have described hope i will get the traffic back as i used to get..
    thanks Harsh for this great and help ful post..


  32. Dan says

    Thanks for this excellent article. You confirmed my suspicions, I need to work on my early posts of delete them. I know that my site is suffering because of low quality posts. Thanks again.

  33. Abhijeet says

    None of my websites are affected by panda, here is the secret.

    The secret of not getting bitten by Panda is not to use google analytics or webmaster tools. When google analytics launched i put it on 1 client site, the sites was ranking well for some niche keywords, after one month of putting the google analytics adword ads started displaying above my client website SERP top ranking. Since then i have never used google analytics or webmaster tools for any of my sites or my clients sites and none of them are affected by Panda.

    Here is how to recover from google Panda – remove google analytics and webmaster tools from your site, remove adsense for some time and switch to another adnetwork, slowly your site will start recovering, since panda cannot sniff your traffic data anymore.

    • Marcin says

      I agree with Google Analytics and AdSense but how webmaster tools can sniff your traffic if there is nothing installed from them ? they relay on Google index CTR data which they will always have access to anyway.


  34. Thilak says

    AFAIK, Google no longer helps you in sculpting PR with “nofollow”. What are your thoughts on it?

    • Bilal Bhatti says

      What that means? Can you explain a little? I don’t think Google ever cared for nofollow links in past as well.

      • Thilak says

        Yeah, it been quite sometime now. In the past, people use to sculpt PR, just selective giving nofollow to links for which they don’t want to pass the PR juice. SEO is more about page speed, than Page rank now.

        Try doing a generic Google search, and compare PR against the results, they have no correlation anymore.

  35. Bilal Bhatti says

    Panda II update is all about quality content. Those who write 2 or 3 liners will see drop in SERPS. The tips shared in the above posts are general SEO tips which everyone SHOULD follow from the very first day. To save yourself from Panda 2 effect, write quality posts. Genuine and original content. Grabbing URLs or titles will not do much. See, how this website got pwned by Panda 2. Why? Because no quality content. They just grabbed the titles to be on the top of SERPS. Though eHow managed to slip through Panda 1 update but they got pwned by this update after a HUGE HUGE criticism.

  36. Kavya Hari says

    Today, almost of the of the newbie folks are suffering from duplicate content or low quality content and so on.So, these info would be more help full to avoid such type of mistakes in the future period.

  37. Suhas says

    If Google understands the meaning of “Quality”, we have a perfect algo in hand…

    The problem is, everything in this world is opinionated (Majority Wins)… So, Google can’t find the perfect algo… With Panda, they have manually pushed Authority blogs to the top… That’s all..

    People who don’t write news articles and low traffic blogs are ignored in this update… Hence, ranking the same…

  38. Scott Rogers says

    I suppose that the reason Ezine Articles took a big hit from the “panda attack” is because of their large amount of crappy articles, and their millions of outbound links to worthless websites. My own site has actually seen a slight increase, so hopefully I am ok. Outstanding article!

  39. Aman says

    Hi! I am also hit by this Panda update. My traffic has dropped 50-70% and i can’t do anything about it. I own an entertainment site and everyone knows that entertainment sites rely more on Videos, Music and Pics instead of big articles, but still, i am the only Hindi Music and Entertainment site that used to write minimum 100 words description (sometimes even 500 if it was required) with every post. I have been ranking in top 5 for all competitive keywords but now I am on page 3-4. The most disturbing thing is that the sites which are ranking above me have zero content, 5-10 banner ads + Popups, and some are even auto blogs and blank blogs.

    • Tantan says

      That facts are very disturbing, indeed.
      I think the new Google algorithm (Panda Update) is rudimentary.
      Now, I’m still waiting to see my site rank (yes, one of my blogs has dropped 85%). I’ll wait till May while doing some optimizations such as: noindexing for some pages and improving some articles.

  40. mymoen says

    Google panda’s make big affect for all traffic. I think, it’s normally, because they just do it, and google panda it’s something new. I found in BBC, if get affected to. Can u imagine?

    However, thanks much for your article. delete old post could be good thing. Unique article; i do it every time, and looking for backlink. i do it every day. hopeful it could improve my traffic.

    • says

      If the link is useful and add value.Keep it dofollow….
      Everyone love quality stuff.. so keeping links dofollow is a good idea..After all a good content or site deserve a back link…. :)

  41. Damian Varyanaddy says

    hey Harsh did you think a theme really affect for panda algo ?
    what is the best theme you can suggest to support this algo ?

    • says

      The thing is theme has to be SEO optimized that’s it…A poorly coded theme can bring negative impact as it will index many useless part of your blog..
      Look into Thesis and Genesis..both are good in terms of SEO…

  42. km says

    My site traffic has been dropped significantly after the panda effects.
    However, thanks for the panda effect recover tips. Hopes your tips can recover the traffic back.

  43. Rajesh says

    I have one question. In the Above Post you said that removing tags can help in recovering from panda effect, then why are you using tags here..?

  44. Geet | HobbyIdeas says

    This is a comprehensive SEO guide. Fortunately, though mine is a startup blog I got a jump in Search Engine traffic after Panda update. But I’ll definitely remember these points in future.

  45. Amit says

    What about pages or posts that are without a proper Meta description ? In my previous days of blogging, I used to hit publish directly from WLW, ignoring the Meta description, keywords etc

    I think this might be one of the signals, “why the older posts of this site do not have proper description and the fact that they are poorly written”.

    • says

      @Amit I agree.. Specially posts which was written at earlier days of blogging got maximum impact. Reason being they were either too small, not optimized for search engine… These days I’m working on rewriting or deleting my old posts and making them better. Once I’m done with it, will be putting a reconsideration request. Might take a month but it’s worth a try.

      • Michael Aulia says

        The biggest impact is a post of mine that was normally on the first result at Google SERP. Now it’s gone to the second page even, making me lose a few hundreds of traffics a day and revenues from Amazon

  46. Miraclepitu says

    Thanks for great sharing Harsh.. I can learn from my mistake in past.. to improve how to get best way in future.. I think all of your opinion is right.. coz some of my blogs have been deindex from google … I think, my blogs over tags, and it makes google see my blog have low quality content..
    Thanks a lot for this my mind.. !!

    • says

      You can do a simple search on Google with and see what all links are indexed which are useless and doesn’t add any value. Try to remove them by adding noindex tag. Also work on Site onpage SEO optimization and put a reconsideration request using Google webmaster tool and that might help you.

      • Miraclepitu says

        Thanks a lot.. i have frustrated with my site…it’s too much useless content…404 pages, and tags..duplicate content,etc. i wanna try to build new site. But i also try to improve the site that have affected by google panda.. i also not use google webmaster tool guidelines in the past. Thanks for your suggest.

  47. Shaswat Patel says

    People are effected this updates and I think Google update is correct but can’t say it’s perfect, they still have junks everywhere in searches!

    For example, Search “Download Hindi Songs” in, they ranked a blogspot blog at 3 which have no content! Does google’s consider no content site as Quality results? :D

    • says

      I agree Shaswat that Panda algo is still not close to perfection. I still see many spam websites and especially Auto content generation website are ranking better. More over Google failed to differentiate between original and copy content. Seems like Google should be more Harsh to those blogs which are working on Auto generated content.

      • Shaswat Patel says

        Yes you’re right and bloggers like us who did hard work now facing issue and biggest mistake of ours is using doindex tag on archive pages and tags. I did change it since USA updats and I think gamble paid off for me as my USA traffic increase once again by 18% from Search engines! So I’ll be sure that I’ll recover from global udpates too! We all know it takes time to regain rankings if you have solid content and SEO Work.

  48. Rohit says

    gr88 article harsha…

    after reading this i went to check if i have my tags indexed or not…there were plenty…now i need to tweak my robot.txt…

    • says

      Rohit you can use Robots.txt or if on WordPress, simply install and configure Robots meta plugin to add noindex and nofollow attribute at the right place.

  49. Manikandan says

    @Siddartha!As I know Indexing the categories doesn’t make any problems,but there shouldn’t me any duplicate categories with too much length.Since googd categories keyword provides better Ranking.But i strongly agree with Harsh,too much of tags causes Google Panda effect.Anyhow Content is the King.

  50. Jarret says

    My site got hit hard by Panda. I don’t have duplicate content nor do I sell links. It is a multi-author blog and I’m pretty generous with links for guest posters. My Google traffic went down 2/3 after Panda, but it’s starting to rebound a little bit.

  51. Siddartha Thota says

    I used to build links for my Categories as I used to focus on my categories for few keywords. I always make sure NoIndex for Tags etc. But I always used to keep DoIndex for Categories. DO you think it might be the reason for My Fall with this Update?

    Should I NoIndex my Categories as well?

    Even I’m not caring the Plagiarism. I think we should start a group in-order to avoid this, since most of bloggers were facing great problem with this!

    How about starting a group for Plagiarism? So that we can share and fight against them?

    • says

      @Sid Well depending on how you are using categories. Since you have mentioned that you are building links for your categories, I don’t think it’s a bad idea. Just make sure you limit the number of Categories and adding proper SEO slug and description for your categories.
      I agree with your point regarding group of bloggers to work on this..But that might be little tough for now, as everyone is busy cleaning up their website and getting our of Panda effect.

  52. shenoyjoseph says

    well i have positive impact from Google panda update and my Blogspot traffic also increased, right now deleting old content posts which is not useful for people

  53. Prashant says

    Hey harsh,

    you have mentioned that when you were a newbie, many of the post were not optimized for search engine. So can you Now give us some Most Effective tips to get the most out of the Google…

    I am Not asking for the SEO basics, But some Effective “Fadu” Tips……

  54. Amit says

    This new algorithm is going to rewrite the future of many blogs. Sadly enough, I am being hit, and hit quite hard :(

    There were a lot of not so important pages like the paginated ones and tag pages and I have cleaned all of them. One of the things you mentioned is the low word count but considering that mine is a tech blog, there are some posts who have very less word count (<150words ). This is because there are some topics, videos, infographics where writing more than 200 words is simply cludding up words that are not required at all. In addition to that, my site has good articles with over 1500 words, but sadly …all of them has taken a hit

    Tough times ahead.

    • says

      I faced the same problem.. and here are some things which worked for me:

      1) Find low quality content and get rid of them. Noindex or delete.. Choice is yours..
      2) For old HQ content, optimize it for keyword and do some social sharing and bookmarking.

      It helped me..and in couple of days I’m going to share my case study for the same..Probably that will be helpful for you and for others.

  55. Garish Wasil says

    I got an increase in my blog’s oragnic traffic, some 4-5%.
    I think harsh missed one major step, thats we should find and remove or redirect all the 404 not pages from our blog.

  56. Seo Bricks says

    Panda update have negative impact on low quality websites. We should worry too much about it if we are offering well researched content on our websites and blogs. Lots of article directories got negative effect due to this update from Google. To come up with Google algo, Ezinearticles team increased the minimum work count to 400.

    So it’s for sure that websites with content less than 200 type will not perform much on Google, but websites with long content even if its not of high quality will still work on Google

  57. Dinesh says

    Excellent detailed post Harsh.
    Requesting a reconsideration to Google will be a good idea.

    The sad news is , sometimes Google show at top in search results which is our same content automatically publishes in other blogs with auto RSS generators. I’m sure it will take some and Google will restore the index.

    Hey, have you checked the Amit’s (labnol) post how he recovered from Google panda and regain the traffic?

  58. Shariq says

    This is an amazing guide for every blogger who is facing negative effect of this type of algo update.
    But I want to say that there are still many bugs in current algo as many automatic content copier websites are still performing well in search results.

    • says

      Shariq sorry for delayed reply..but with latest updates.. Google has taken care of the same…
      These days I see very less such content syndication and copy paste bloggers ranking….

  59. Anoop says

    Even I found some blogger using my RSS to syndicate contents! But after I had emailed him telling him the consequences he stopped it. The guy was also aggregating all the top blogs like Labnol. Thank you for bringing into notice about the DMCA!
    BTW the panda’s pic looks great! :P :D

    • sureshpeters says

      i have a query, syndication is not a crime, but if we syndicate all content then it will be violates the policies. If we syndicated in teaser post it won’t be any problem at all :)

      • Anoop Sudhakaran says

        Right said, I have seen many pingbacks from Teaser syndications but dont worry about them but what I was talking above was about Full Post copy paste.