Last week, Google released its fourth round of “Penguin” updates. This round, however, contains the much-publicized Penguin 2.0 technology that is designed to reduce spam results in search engine queries.

Let’s be clear about any search engine’s objective—to provide the most relevant search results based on the query entered by a user visiting the search engine.

Search engines have become better and better at determining the relevancy of a search result through its complicated algorithms. However, every search engine faces a nemesis: spammers.

Let’s be clear about a spammer’s objective—for its irrelevant content to rank well in a search engine query.

Google’s Penguin 2.0 is all about trying to cull spam content from its search results. This age-old battle (age-old in Internet-speak, of course) has reached a new phase.

What does this mean for your law firm’s website?

Nothing. And here’s why.

  1. You haven’t gone out and bought  spam links to your website. You didn’t spend $100 to generate 1,000 links from sites like all in a short period of time, thinking that would improve your rankings. Rather than taking that silly path, you focused on slowly building high-quality links from trusted sites that were truly relevant to your firm’s areas of practice.
  2. You regularly check your website’s link profile. When you have found links that didn’t seem appropriate for your firm, you contacted the linking websites and asked to have those links removed; if that didn’t work, you leveraged Google’s disavow tool as a last resort.
  3. You didn’t stuff your web pages with too many “Exact Match” anchor texts. Instead, you have focused on natural, relevant content in your web copy, and tags, without plagiarizing the link text.
  4. You are continually releasing social content with links back to your website that is valuable, actionable and engaging for the user.

In short, if you are building your backlinks and content the old-fashioned way, naturally, you probably fared pretty well through this update.

If any of the above criteria didn’t apply to you, consider a deep dive into your website’s traffic and search rankings. Law firms aren’t immune to Penguin 2.0’s reach. Indeed, they are one of the top 10 industries whose queries are affected by Penguin 2.0. However, good SEO practice in the past will minimize the impact of 2.0 today.

Which means you have nothing to worry about.

Bill Mulligan is president of Caffeine, a full-service digital agency that specializes in business performance of digital assets. You can learn more about Caffeine at