Matt Cutts announced today that Google is ‘rolling out our Panda 4.0 update‘. The Panda algorithm, one of Google’s quality control algorithms alongside Penguin, is focused on filtering out what Google deem as thin, low-quality and duplicate content from the web and favouring results that are well structured, unique and in-depth.

Cutts has previously mentioned that the update is focused on giving small businesses more of a fighting chance in the search results.

Could this mean small businesses will be given more leeway when it comes to managing pages and products on their website?

While in most cases Panda effectively targets and filters low-quality pages from the search results, eCommerce websites in particular suffer from inherent structural and duplicate content problems that are an unintended by-product of poor product and website management.

While Google have been praised for their active stance fighting search engine spam and punishing those manipulating the search results, they also receive a fair share of flack for harshly penalising businesses who unintentionally violated these Google guidelines.

It looks like Panda 4.0 could be a first step towards acknowledging these issues and helping small business fight against larger competitors with greater resources and authority.