SMBs might start to see their search rankings improve if they were hit by Google's Panda algorithm.

Even if small business owners are up-to-date on the latest search marketing trends, they may not fully understand how an upcoming Google algorithm can impact their rankings until the technology is released. This was the case with Google’s Panda and Penguin algorithms, which punished sites engaging in deceptive marketing practices such as publishing poor quality website content or buying backlinks.

However, the search engine announced earlier this year that it would gradually roll out a more forgiving Panda algorithm. The updated version was expected to soften its blow on sites that were penalized incorrectly or unfairly because they were actually within the parameters of the search engine’s quality guidelines.

Initially, Google said it wouldn’t confirm when the refreshes were coming, but Search Engine Land‘s Barry Schwartz received confirmation from the company that search ranking fluctuations were due to an algorithm update.

“In the last few days we’ve been pushing out a new Panda update that incorporates new signals so it can be more finely targeted,” Google told the source.

Some domains have already begun reaping the benefits of the revised Panda technology, with SEOs reporting higher positions in search results, more keywords directing traffic to their pages and stronger search volume overall. Small businesses should check their content analytics to note any recent upticks in traffic, which indicate they’re benefiting from Panda’s more forgiving update.