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Has Your Website Been Penalized By Google?
Here's What You Can Do
Originally Published: November 8, 2011
Since Google's latest ranking algorithm, the search engine rankings of many websites are worse than before. If your rankings dropped, your website might have been penalized by Google. This article helps you to recover from such a situation.
Step 1: Check If Your Website Has Been Penalized
A sudden ranking drop doesn't necessarily mean that your website has been penalized. It might be that your competitors now have better backlinks or that their websites get more mentions on social media sites.
Some of your most important backlinks might have been removed by the linking site or your website simply does not meet Google's current requirements.
For that reason, it is important to check if Google still lists your website. Search Google for "yourdomain.com" and "site:yourdomain.com". If you don't get any results, then it's likely that your website has been penalized.
Step 2: Don't Panic, Try To Find The Reason For The Penalty
Before you contact Google, you should try to find the reason for the penalty. There are several things that Google does not like:
- You sold links on your website: if you sell links on your website for SEO purposes and if it is obvious that you're selling links, this might get you in trouble. Use the rel="nofollow" attribute if you sell links.
- You used paid links to promote your website: if Google is sure that you purchased links to improve your Google rankings, they might double-check your site. Remove the paid links.
- Fully automated backlink systems: if you participate in a fully automated backlink scheme, it is almost sure that Google will penalize your website. Remove the automated linking scripts from your web pages.
- You use on-page spam techniques such as hidden text, keyword stuffing, sneaky redirects or cloaking.
Step 3: Remove The Spammy Elements And Optimize Your Web Pages
Before you file a reconsideration request, you must make sure that your website doesn't contain any spammy elements. Check step 2 and remove anything that could be spammy from your web pages.
optimize your web pages with IBP to make sure that they offer everything that Google needs to give your website high rankings for the right keywords.
When you have done that, you can file a reconsideration request.
Google continually updates the ranking algorithm. All spam techniques on your web pages will be discovered sooner or later. If you want to get lasting rankings in Google's top 10 results, use
white-hat SEO techniques that are approved by Google.
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