Under the cover of “user satisfaction” Google aims at spammers who lower user experience by black SEO practices. Those practices mostly but not only involve low quality, irrelevant links either in blog profiles, posts, link exchange schemes and other cheap ways used to pass the rank.
We know that spammers are at the aim of the search engine giant. Is anyone else affected? In our opinion everyone who is trying to manipulate Google page rank in any “unnatural” way and do not care about its public web presence.
By unnatural way I mean reaching the top pages very quickly, frankly in matter of a few weeks or a few months. Let me give you an example. You have a new website and then in one day, a few weeks or very short time you get lots of backlinks. This seems very unnatural simply because like in a real life everything spread in its own peace. You can’t really build a house in one day, neither gets hundreds or thousands of links in a short time. Not in most cases and that is what Google thinks.
Google always cared about content and the way it serves to the users not the tons of links pointed to us in short amount of time. Remember quality not quantity. With Penguin 2.0 sites built sorely for SEO purposes will be blown away with the implemented algorithm. Make sure no porn, illegal websites and similar point to your site.
So is there everything lost? No, but if this applies to you should “rewire” your website and to start implementing these steps:
Penguin 2.0 update fights even harder site wide links. That is because what has been allowed or let’s say tolerated in the past has been abused. Could all the site wide links be bad and harmful? I wouldn’t say so because some businesses or websites operate on them for example Web directories or on-line stores. So why they were targeted by Google. Maybe simply because lots of spammers noticed this trend of skipping page rank and used this method everywhere they could. Be very careful using them.
The next thing which is likely to get your site penalised is the use of stuffed keywords in your content. Yet again if it looks artificial for visitors it will be artificial for Google too. There are better ways of ranking higher in search results than repeating keywords over and over again. Good relevant content backed up with research will pay off in better way than risking loosing not only rank in search engine but also your visitors or customers.
Another important factors the newest penguin update are likely to focus is diversity of links. What I mean by this is that they should come from different kind of content such as blogs, forums, news sites social media, article sites and others. I hope that you have general idea about links diversity. One particular sort of link profile is seen by Google as un-natural. More buzz you make, more likely you will get links for your website. Do you remember about good quality content? Without this you will not get any good links at all.
Yet another important area where the newest update will focus is very high Alexa ranking score. You can check your website score by downloading toolbar for your browser (in most cases also showing Google page rank). Many sources such as Moz.com website shows that even if this factor isn’t particularly important for many of us, quite few advertisers looking at low Alexa Rank (as it has different scale and measures than page rank which higher is better). What Alexa rank does is giving them indication if some website is worth visiting and content to be read. Improving the quality of the content on your website should lower these value and make your site more valuable not only for advertisers but visitors too.
Just because Google sees outbound links as votes it is very important to think twice before linking to other pages. What if we need to link? This is a good practice to add “nofollow” attribute to those links we are not completely sure. I have to mention that you shouldn’t avoid linking to all website just to save “juice” on your website as it looks a bit artificial. Quality content sometimes requires reference to reliable, respectable source. However you should always remember to list the most relevant one and not create site wide links that way or block of links (i.e. in WordPress blogroll can be a good example).
The last factor I have to mention are backlinks coming from identical C class addresses. Why exactly class C of the IP addressing scheme? Although it is not officially confirmed I assume that C class has been mostly assigned to private (casual internet) users and class A or B to business and corporate. For that reason class C might be more prone to page rank manipulation or dodgy linking techniques. Identical class might seems to be owned by one person and that is likely to manipulate pagerank by linking between own website. Matt Cutts form Google made some comment on that topic here.
Mentioned newest Google updates is yet about backlinks but this time the tolerance level of “grey area” of SEO has been slightly moved down. That mean no more, no less but quality backlinks that points to your website from relevant sources, removal of “toxic” ones by either contacting the administrator (webmaster) of website that has links to you or by submitting request to Google (through Google Disavow tool). Carrying about your links (quality not quantity) should become your practice (or SEO company if you like to use) just because that can show your professionalism in fight about your online presence and the way users see you. In another article I will get into details how to make a quality linkbuilding also called linkbuilding 2.0 after corresponding Penguin update.
Article by Greg Szalas
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