Thursday, May 31, 2012

Tips to recover from Google Penguine updates

First Panda and then Penguin update, Google is all set for penalizing the not so good quality sites. Rankings of sites who are following black hat SEO techniques, not following Google webmaster guidelines and mainly the ones who are over optimizing have fallen down.
This has made many marketers to re-think their strategies in an effort to tone down their SEO efforts. But the question arises where to draw the line between optimization and over-optimization.
So to make your assessment easy I have summarized few key factors that Google are likely to consider when evaluating a website over optimization.

Tip 1: Re-Check Your Websites Title Tags

Is your Title tag a list of your targeted keywords? Then you are the next victim of Google update. So to avoid that change your spammy looking title tags to something little more readable. Tr
y to keep your title tag character in the limit prescribed in Google guidelines. It is but natural that you will lose some rank by altering your title tag but that is better than getting penalized by Google. Best practice would be to make separate pages for your keyword and then add then in the title tag of the appropriate page.

Tip 2: Do not Stuff Meta Description With Keywords

As for title tag same goes for the description tag, make it a readable one by human with proper sentence optimized using your keywords. However it description tag does not contribute much in ranking algorithm but still it’s better to be safe then caught by Google.

Tip 3: Get Rid Of Spammy Backlinks

Google has strictly laid down in all its update that quality of backlinks is more important than its quantity. So if your backlinks are coming from some non relevant sites, spun articles, link farms, or other bad neighborhood then you can be in trouble.
So trackback all the links and remove the ones with poor quality and non relevant content. Or going other way around build more strong profile of good, high quality links from relevant content sites.

Tip 4: Make Links with Variation of Anchor Text

If most of your links are with same exact match anchor text the Google will find you guilty of making automated links. So try to make links manually using variations of your anchor text. Also do not make links of same type and from same site again and again. Try to get variation in link type also. Do not give Google a chance to think that there is something fishy in your backlink profile.

Tip 5: Keep Your Website Footers Neat and Clean

Many websites follow the pattern of putting the anchor text links of their internal pages and other not so important pages in their footer. If you are also doing that, stop right now. It’s time to clean your footers now. This looks spammy to search engines. It is advisable to build internal linking structure through your page content. Optimize your page content with the anchor text of other page and hyper link them.

Tip 6: Avoid Duplicate Content

If you are targeting same keywords on more number of pages it looks spammy to Google. Try to consolidate the pages with similar content. For e.g. a page discussing Cell Phones and another page offering content related to Mobile Phones means the same. This has been done to capture the traffic using the anchor text. Try to combine both use virtually same keywords or anchor text on the same page.

Tip 7: Make Proper Use Of Keyword Density and Keyword Proximity Concept

Optimizing web content with targeted keyword does not mean overstuffing of the keyword in the paragraphs and headers. Properly follow the keyword density according to the content used on the page. Spread your key phrases evenly in your content.

Tip 8: Focus on Effective User Experience

Whatever strictness Google is following is all to provide good quality of results to the end users. So try to please and satisfy your visitors, it will automatically bring you in Good books if Google. So make concentrate all your efforts in providing effective user experience. Let their visit to your site a satisfactory one. They should be able to find what they came looking for using the keyword they queried in Google.
So if you are the one who has been penalized by Google for over optimization then follows these tips and reduces your casualty to some extent. And the ones who are still not caught by Google can use these to get out of the radar.


Friday, May 25, 2012

Best SEO strategy after Penguin Update

The SEO community is discovering more and more No-Nos every day! Every time a new theory about the Google ranking algorithm is formed, something happens to disprove it, leaving us all back at square one. The reality is that even some of those sites that avoided the No-Nos have been hit as well.
Nonetheless, the official list of post-Penguin No-Nos:
  • Don’t over-optimise your website copy, and avoid keyword stuffing and (as Belinda said in her last blog post) excessively highlighting (just) keywords.
  • Avoid low-quality and low-relevance links. Google particularly mentioned links that are contained in content with no relevance (i.e., spammy or highly spun content).
  • Don’t use just one “money keyword” as the anchor text of your incoming links. (It’s been found that sites that had >60% of link as just one keyword were penalised.)
  • Similarly, don’t use that money keyword with internal linking; e.g., change your menu from “where to buy blue widgets” to “where to buy”.
To be honest, it’s the same stuff that Google has said from day one. All that has changed is that (it appears) they are now slapping you on the wrist if you DON’T adhere to their golden list of No-Nos. This, however, opens the door to Negative SEO.

Can you explain what negative SEO is and how Penguin changes how negative SEO affects websites?

Up until recently Negative SEO was a form of reputation management; you couldn’t de-rank a website, but you could push it down by ranking with more favourable content. However, now that Google has implemented a penalty for certain factors, they have (intentionally or unintentionally) opened the door to Negative SEO where it IS possible to de-rank a website.
By purposely building a lot of low-quality and spammy links to a competitor’s website, you can trigger Google’s “iron-fist” reflex and your competitor’s website will start to drop in rank. What’s that saying? If you can’t beat them, sneak up and cut their legs off.

Is this something that every website owner should be worried about?

No, I don’t think so. I think we’ll see it in play in the more competitive niches, but not at the general level.
In addition, even in the SEO black hatters’ world, the topic of Negative SEO has been made taboo. Apparently, despite their willingness to cheat and manipulate Google, they have a conscience when it comes to other businesses/websites who’ve worked hard to get where they are!
Bottom line, I think you would be struggling to find an SEOer who would be willing to engage in Negative SEO for business reasons. There’s an ethical grey area here: Is it wrong to sabotage another business’s marketing, or is it right to employ your full arsenal for the benefit of your clients?
I think (for now) it’s a clear-cut NO! Don’t do it. But I also think that will change if Google doesn’t take steps to reverse the open door that is Negative SEO.

How can people check if their website has been affected?

Keep an eye on your rankings; either use software or just check them yourself. (Remember to de-personalise your search – Chrome’s ‘Incognito Mode’ is best for that.)
If your website drops more than a spot or two and doesn’t bounce back, then you can probably start to worry. From there your only real chance of recovery is a plea to Google via their reconsideration request.
Do you have any tips for business owners who have (or want) SEO as part of their long-term marketing strategy?

Why, come see me of course!

It’s vital to diversify your SEO efforts now. You can’t target just one money keyword and go gung ho at it. However, this makes it a lot harder to target and rank on the main competitive terms in your industry. Yes, yes, that does make SEO a lengthier and costlier process!

If you’re not already, get on the social media bandwagon; it’s suspected that social signals are playing a bigger role now than ever before.

Lastly, should you decide to engage an SEO consultant – choose carefully!
Chris Bates is an online marketing consultant who loves your business as much as you do. Through years of research, testing and experience, Chris has developed a wealth of knowledge and loves to help your business get more business, online. You just need to decide to get more business online, and then leave the rest to him. Find out more at