A piece of SEO news many missed is that Google Penguin 1.1 is already out and working it’s way through millions of sites as you read this. The announcement was made by Matt Cutts, on Twitter of all places, and provided little detail as to what was going to be happening. Cutts referred to this as nothing more than a “Data Refresh”, but already, some SEOs and webmasters are wondering how accurate that is. Cutts stated that this “refresh” would only impact .10% of all English language searches, but the early numbers seem to indicate it is higher (just like the claim that the original Penguin only affected 3% of sites seems to be grossly underestimated by Google’s team)
Google has notoriously understated the impact of tweaks to their algorithm updates in the past and this seems no different. It doesn’t appear to be willful misrepresentation so much as underestimating what the actual reach will be because changes to web content occur so quickly that accuracy in making estimates is a guess at best. This is especially true when webmasters are still scrambling to adjust to the latest update in earnest.
As would be expected, any changes at this point are not being viewed favorably. Since Google is not hearing any re-considerations for sites hit by Penguin, although they have a “wrongful penalty” form, recovering from any type of penalty is becoming extremely difficult – particularly since recovery for many webmasters depends on third party compliance. The form for this from the original Penguin update is still online which seems to indicate the demand for it has not lessened with this latest update in the least.