Everyone knows Google’s like a popularity contest; the higher ranking you have, the more chances of gaining clients.
Since off page SEO has been a very important process in achieving high rankings, the act of link building has become an one of the easiest ways to increase a website’s popularity. Because of this efficiency, some website owners have resorted to sneaky link building practices, and this is what Google’s Penguin Update focuses on.
The Google Penguin Update, released in April 2012, essentially targets link spamming practices which are used to manipulate page rank. The mighty Penguin hates irrelevant link exchanges, buying or selling links, pages specifically created for linking, and linking to unrelated sites. So if you’ve done any of this, your site’s probably been penalized. If you think you’ve been hit by Penguin, don’t stress…there are ways to find your way back into the popularity game. Let’s start of with…
Where Are Your Links?
Log into your Google Webmaster Tools (if you don’t have one set up, get set up now!) and learn where your links are. Google’s Webmaster Tools will list all the places supposedly linking back to your site. Once you work out which links are ‘spammy’ or unnatural, be quick-smart and remove them!
If you can’t remove links, or find certain pages have been deleted from the web, you can ask Google to take it out of its index. Since we’re talking about links, let’s move onto ones you have complete control over…
Fix Your Internal Links
If you’ve created links within your site purely for SEO, go through and reduce the number of them right now. If you have SEO footers, sidebar links or overly optimised anchor text that are there just for Google’s spiders (and not for your users), update or get rid of them.
As I mentioned in other blog post, the effectiveness of internal links is based around your intention. If the link contributes to the user experience and people actually click on them, then it’s a-okay to keep them on your site. So, all your links are sweet now, what else can you do to help recoup your rankings?
Uncover Affected Keywords
Knowing which keywords were affected by the Penguin Update can be a really useful tool in targeting which links and pages to fix first. Log into your handy Google Analytics account and review your organic keywords (sort by date). Look at which keywords dropped in traffic and make note of the date to see if it corresponds with the Penguin release. Once you’ve located those sad little keywords, you can then update or remove them. Isn’t Google Analytics great for stuff like this? Did you know there are more tools that can help you?
Tools Can Help You
Aside from Google’s Webmaster Tools and Analytics, there are a variety of tools available to help you fine-tune your website and get back on the road to recover. For example, there’s Cognitive SEO, Majestic, Ahrefs and Link Density, to name just a few. Remember, there’s a wealth of resources out there, so make the most of them so you can receive all their benefits. Once all your systems are put into place, things will just “start happening” for you…
Recovery Becomes Automatic
Okay, your hands are aching from all the typing you’ve been doing. You’ve done enough clean up, your pages and links have been re-crawled, and you’re sitting there, staring at the search results thinking “When’s this going to take effect?” Once you’ve done everything you can on your end, recovering from Penguin becomes automatic. Be patient little grasshopper, because it may take several months before you see any results, and even require a few more clean-ups along the way to Google Penguin recovery.
The Road To Recovery
So even though the concept of recovering from Google Penguin is quite simple, it actually takes a lot of effort and time to improve search engine ranking following a tried and tested SEO advice. You need assess, target, update or remove all those bad links. And if you have hundreds of them, your recover will be very tedious, but well worth it.
Are you unsure if you’ve got bad links pointing to your site? Did you need an SEO strategist to assess your site and help you ensure its in the best possible shape? It only takes a few minutes to chat with one of our specialists to see what we can do to get you back on the road to recovery. Call us today on 1300 662 979.