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|How long does pr0 last?|
Is anyone else feeling about Google's PR0 (or PR=low) permanent penalty the way I am... as if I am being treated badly, unfairly, capriciously, and without understanding.
The way I see things now: Six months ago I got "caught" linking in a legitimate business fashion- I have 8 domains, most of them high-content multipage sites- but also one "blue-widget" site the main page to which I linked from most all the pages of my other domains. The main reason for these links was that I WANTED TO SELL BLUE WIDGETS to those visitors! Why Google could not just stop counting links (from a particular domain greater than one or ten or whatever number Google might select) is beyond me. Instead, Google seems to have opted for being the judge jury and executioner and given my "blue-widget" site a permanent ban.
Why is the ban for linking patterns I might have had six months ago permanent? Such permanency feels arbitrary and capricious given that other bans have been only temporary. Yes, I know that Google needs to protect their results; but when Google installs filters that effectively (and permanently) kick sites out of the database for reasons such as the above, Google would seem to create a reservoir of ill will that no company can long afford. And it is so unnecessary when a temporary ban would likely serve as well.
|How do we define what is legitimate linking done in accordance with the concept of the connectivity of the web, as opposed to what's done deliberately to manipulate search engine rankings? |
To bend your question just slightly, I can tell you why I was doing mirror sites before Google even existed. We have a lot of political content. Not just my sites, but the other nonprofits on our Class C. We've been hit with denial-of-service attacks going back to 1996, from fascists around the world. If I had a choice, I'd put duplicate sites on completely different servers. To some extent I was doing this, but it's too expensive, and besides, our server has good bandwidth now, and we now have our own router (which gives us a lot more flexibility to effectively block bad guys). So the situation evolved to where only one of my little sites, which hardly matters, is on another server now.
Then Google comes along, and my mirror sites are evil incarnate. I have to keep Google out of them now, or get penalized. Without saying that Google is right or wrong about this, I can say that I'm not a spammer.
Is Google right? Are we right? The question would never arise in pre-Google days. Perhaps Google does make more sense in this particular example. But it's also an example that shows we have to stay on top of where Google is taking us.
You're not comparing all link directories to DMOZ are you? There is no comparison. DMOZ is an authority and Google depends on the content they provide.
And no, I'm not giving away PR whenever I link to a site. Those links may be giving those sites some PR leverage. The text of the link also has an effect on the overall ranking of the page it's located on. But think about it, what would be the incentive in creating a directory if it would only serve to drain your PR and pass it over to other sites?
And google isn't saying that you can't - just "how are two identical site helping google visitors. "Effectively the dup sites are only help you.
|To bend your question just slightly, I can tell you why I was doing mirror sites before Google even existed. |
|Perhaps Google does make more sense in this particular example. But it's also an example that shows we have to stay on top of where Google is taking us. |
I totally agree, being both popular and an authority can quickly turn to being a monopoly. I don't believe this is the case right now... but it is something to consider.
>>>>It's hard to find the right balance. I want to help webmasters but not spammers
There you go again (as Reagan used to say).
Just when I thought I had it all figured out.
Everything I do from selection of domain names to crossing "t's" and dotting the last "i", is done in such a way so as to maximize search engine ranking to pull in customers and give them exactly what they are looking for in a useable format when they click through.
Does that make me a superior webmaster who has dedicated much time and effort into being current on the latest techniques for being a superior webmaster...or am I a spammer?
Thanks to all of you who took the time to look at my site - Maybe I need to explain a bit what I am doing here.
I have had my jewelry site for over 3 years, I added, as a sub directory, a site for my daughter who does beading a couple of years ago. This year I moved her to her own domain, hoping it would help with her sales. And yes, Contractor, they are very similar in design, sometimes I'm not very original - I'm a jeweler and not a very good webmaster. I haven't worked much on her site because I don't have time and this year when all this stuff about links and bad neighborhoods came out I decided to just leave hers alone and not add any more links.
On my index page on the jewelry site I have 6 outside links to Jewelry Directories. In order to be listed in these directories I have to provide a recipical link on my home page. I was under the impression that this is a good thing.
I was also under the impression that it is a good thing to have outgoing links to other sites that I consider interesting or good sites. Most of these are jewelry sites and they are my 1st page of links on an interior page. I did go thru my links earlier in the year and got rid of anything that smacked of link farms or zeus stuff, etc.
GoogleGuy: "I believe the domain you're referring to was in both LinkTopics and a buddy links program?"
If you are referring to my site, I did participate in buddy links and link topics but dropped them well over a year ago. at that time it was touted as a good idea - How long is one penalized for something like that? I can't help it if some of the old "buddies" still have links to me - I don't have links to them.
fathom" "I think the single biggest problem is one where the hosting service does something wrong and your association with them leads to a penalty."
How do you know if your host is doing something wrong? I have trouble understanding these things and I probably don't do enough homework on it.
some seem to think I should get rid of most of my outgoing links, I hesitate to do that because most of them have recipical links back to me - besides I like their stuff. Also, I do get referrals from many of these sites.
I don't in any way shape or form think that google is picking on me, I realize something in my coding or configuration is being caught in the filters, but what? I would love to play by the rules if I just knew what the rules are.
Thanks again for the help and suggestions.
Hi janmccl, the world wide web is such a prolific place the any number of things can make it impossible to zero in on the precise cause of low PageRank and less than adequate Ranked Position.
There is nothing wrong with outbound links on your main page, in fact many types of links adds creditability.
|How do you know if your host is doing something wrong? I have trouble understanding these things and I probably don't do enough homework on it. |
Go to the main page of your host and see how their PR compares to yours. In general, if they or one of their other customer (have spammed) it can effect you.
janmccl I'm not saying don't link and don't give PR, what I'm saying is reduce and repair. Your low PR isn't helping you or the sites you're linked to. You need to fix this first. (Save your exist pages and replace when back to normal).
Drop any code that is not absolutely necessary (ie - smart tags currently do not exist) this is only adding unnecessary bytes to your file size. Spaces ( ) use alignment tags.
I am in much the same position you are in.
I am an astrologer, not an expert at web building. I fear that I have peen penalyzed more from a lack of understanding of what I am doing than anything else.
I have gotten rid of all the suspicious links I could find and emailed to get taken off others.
I have tried optimizing my site without spamming, at least not intentional spamming, as I don't know for sure what ALL the spam techniques are.
I have a 2nd domain, another .com, starlight numerology that has it's own registration...(which, in case someone decides to check both are listed in my son's name since I am 66 years old and when I pass on they will be his)these are linked together. They are on the same server but each has a different IP #.
Perhaps I have broken other rules I know nothing about...I am truly puzzled.
I sent an email last Nov Or dec when I was completely dropped and my reply was very generic ending with a "keep on Googling" phrase which I would have gladly hit someone upside the head with if I could have got to them!
I taught myself everything from books, built my own sites, and maintain them, I have been on the web since 1998 and as of now I enjoy very good placement on a lot of search engines for my keywords and key phrases that I have targeted.
Last month I was given a PR of 3 with no links showing on google and nowhere to be found in the results. Then at the end of last month it is down again to a 2?????most of the inner pages is 0. The numerology site is fairing pretty good (with a 4) for a small basic site but not the Astrology site which has a few hundred pages of content.
I would very much like to know what I am doing wrong but if Google doesn't like my site, then so be it...I am about ready to block Googlebot myself due to the frustration!!!!
I think the real question here of this thread, is what should those that were penalized do to recover?
|I think the real question here of this thread, is what should those that were penalized do to recover? |
I think the answer is an unpopular one. Not to go back into individual site discussion, but it seems fairly regular for people to be asking "Why can't I still do this?" or "What can I still get away with?" after they get hit with a penalty. Which is only natural, of course.
If I got a PR0 penalty, I would be wanting to change my site so that it was whiter than white and then see if my PR revived.
And not grovelling to GoogleGuy, as it was termed, but reading what he has to say about this, which has been fairly clear, and therefore getting out of things like webrings, Zeus, links to bad neighbourhoods, duplicate sites, crosslinking own sites, etc, etc.
I don't know what the algorithm does, and it changes from month to month anyway, so I would want to avoid the merest taint of wrongdoing.
And I would have the Health Warning from a few months ago pinned up above my computer screen.
The posts about web rings warrant a discussion of their own, and have been moved to Web Rings, Rank and Google [webmasterworld.com].
I have not even figured out exactly how much differece PR makes.
We have two websites, one is a regular site and one is ecommerce. The ecommerce site comes up a lot higher in most key word searches, but the other site has higher PR for most pages - perhaps just because it has been in Google since 1999?
Blimey! You go away for the weekend, but does WMW stop? NO! It just keeps on churnin', and what a great thread too.
The only thing is, after getting very big very quickly, this thread seems to be getting smaller again!
Half an hour ago we had 103 posts, now we've got 101, and a biggish post that was here a while ago is now gone!
P.S. And in answer to Stever above, those uf us who thought we were white went grey, first on the toolbar, then in the hair.
Now we've scrubbed with sand and carbolic soap until we're raw and it would be nice to know if that is going to get us back in the Google club, coz if it don't, all this waiting might just cause us to be too skint to afford the hot water for any more washing.
That's enough squeezed out of that analogy.
|I think the real question here of this thread, is what should those that were penalized do to recover? |
Stick it out for 6 months. If Google do not reply to multiple e-mails then your only option is to buy a new domain and shift the site over to it. Making sure, of course, that this time you don't screw your site over by linking to dodgy sites and/or cross-linking.
Will not work for me, however, because I've pretty much build mini-brands around my domains. But for some "chicken in a basket" Web sites it may be the only way forward....
|Ann: I am an astrologer, not an expert at web building. I fear that I have peen penalyzed more from a lack of understanding of what I am doing than anything else. |
I think what Ann says here is the worry for Google. Many, many sites can be affected with a PENALTY 0 rank because the owners didn't know about the rules. They just thought, hey - link exchanges are good! So they link up with Credit Card Blah Blah and get the poison pumping through their HTML quicker then a rabbit on speed.
Wouldn't it be lovely if Google introduced a pay-per-review on a Web site affected by this? I dunno, $15-25 per URL. I would pay it, no doubt about that. Come on Google, you know you want to ;)
<<You're not comparing all link directories to DMOZ are you? There is no comparison. DMOZ is an authority and Google depends on the content they provide.>>
I have always respected your opinion on things. But I would still like for you to explain my question (below)that you replied to if you do not believe "directory" style sites are treated differently.
Copied from other message:
"Take all of the DMOZ dump sites and explain to me why they carry any PR at all if they are not treated differently. If a site copied another site word for word in any other situation it would be penalized. Let alone the hundreds of sites that do this with DMOZ and retain high rankings."
CromeYellow, marcia split off a couple posts for their own thread.
> How long does pr0 last?
I'm in the position of having a fair spread on PR0 sites, most are behaving differently and this is what I see:
Site 1 - PR0 since October last year, was about 40 sub-domains now one site, still PR0 no matter what I try with it. This one I am sure will not recover at all.
Site 2 - PRO since October, completely out of the index for March/April/most of May. Now the home page is PR3 [down 1], internal pages still PR0. I think this one may be on the comeback trail.
Site 3 - Out of the index since March, now back in with PR3 [down 1] all internal pages are also a 3. This one looks to have fully recovered.
Site 4 - Out of the index since March, gave Google the robots.txt early May. Now just searchable by domain name [shows the DMOZ decsription no Google snippet] and is strangley a PR1.
I believe sites 2,3 and 4 were removed on the basis of whois info and *may* have been reinstated following emails to Google. They never replied to the emails so I am just guessing.
In short, some will never get the PR back, some will recover slowly and I believe that some can be put back if Google reviews them out and then back in again. All imho of course.
All of the sites still show no links nor similar pages.
Contractor, they do get pentalized. I've seen many of them fall and rise over the years.
No doubt a lot get through the filters (and more power to them, if Google can do it why not them) but how many actually show up on the first page for common keyword searches? The only time I see them is when I conduct searches on my domain names. Being in the Google index is one thing, showing up in the SERPs is another.
To Googleguy-your promised comments will be most welcome when they arrive;
This thread has been an eyeopener for me.. and I find myself with as many unanswered questions as the jewelry and astrology site owners who contributed their difficulties and concerns earlier in the thread. For example-zeus... OK now I know to search for "mydomain zeus" to find where zeus sites may have linked to me, but the two sites found by that search have PRs of PR3 and PR4 with home pages higher. How am I ever to know that such sites are bad neighborhoods that I should not be linking to, particularly if they do not have "zeus" written on their links page? And if those two are so bad, why has Google not given them a PR0 that would give someone like myself warning? (I WAS linking to these two until today.) It all seems like such an unnecessary Google mess which could be avoided if Google just limited the number of links they counted from Site A to Site B and just did not count any links to/from bad neighborhoods. Discouraging...
|How am I ever to know that such sites are bad neighborhoods that I should not be linking to, particularly if they do not have "zeus" written on their links page? And if those two are so bad, why has Google not given them a PR0 that would give someone like myself warning? |
Presumably if they don't have a PR0, Google hasn't identified them as Zeus pages and hasn't penalized them in any way... and you aren't negatively affected by linking to them or from them. The question then is whether, or when Google will eventually identify them.
As you say, they don't have "zeus" written all over their links page -- so Google isn't finding every Zeus page as soon as it goes online.
One step I have taken this month is to exclude Googlebot from a fairly large group of topical links pages. These pages represent a small percentage of the total site, but I'm at a loss as to what else could be wrong. I've kept the links pages up to date by checking for dead URLs, removing inappropriate sites when notified, etc., and I don't THINK I have any spam sites in there, but I certainly don't have the time to check a few thousand sites to see if they are PR0. I feel sorry for the sites that are in the directory, since they'll lose whatever traffic and PR benefit the site has given them. (Not much of a loss at the moment, though!)
One disturbing trend I've noticed is for spamlike sites to gobble up existing domain names. As I was checking my directory, I found a dozen domains that had been turned into nearly identical ad/links sites. These actually had decent PR, so apparently Google hadn't discovered them yet. I deleted them anyway, of course. Without a manual review of every site, though, it's possible that other spammers have snuck into the directory by domain acquisition. It's also possible that sites that looked ok at first have adopted practices that made Google consider them "bad". We've had several webmasters notify us of new domain names because their old ones had been grabbed by porn sites or spammers.
It bothers me to wall off valuable content from Google, but the low PR situation has me grasping at straws. If it's a timed penalty, of course, then this won't do it.
It just seems like a simple e-mail stating, "you have links to bad sites, remove them & you'll be fine" or "there's no problem with the site, your penalty expires in a month" would save a lot of anguish, not to mention unnecessary messing with content.
|It just seems like a simple e-mail stating, "you have links to bad sites, remove them & you'll be fine" or "there's no problem with the site, your penalty expires in a month" would save a lot of anguish, not to mention unnecessary messing with content. |
I'm sure the funky guys and girls at Google can come up with some sort of response system to this issue and this seems like a good idea. Let's think about it - 6 months with a 0 rank... I think that's enough punishment for my cross-linking crime!
|6 months with a 0 rank... I think that's enough punishment for my cross-linking crime |
I think the whole "punishment" idea (if it actually exists, and GG implies that "timed" penalties DO exist) is misguided. I think if a site clears up its problems, and this is verified by spidering, it should be returned to normal status during the next update. Many site owners had no idea they were doing something Google didn't like, and if they are diligent enough to remove the offending content, why not restore them? If they aren't restored, they will have to keep looking for other potential problems, making content changes, removing and re-adding their site, etc... all in a futile attempt to restore lost PR. Or, they'll give up and add to domain pollution by setting up a new domain for Google.
|I think the whole "punishment" idea (if it actually exists, and GG implies that "timed" penalties DO exist) is misguided. |
Of course it exists! There are many different causes of 0 rank, don't forget. But I know for sure my 0 ranks are due to a cross-linking penalty which I did back in Dec/Jan. I'm quite sure Google has different lengths of penalty - 1 month, 4 months, 6 months.... perhaps even 5 years ;)
"spamlike sites to gobble up existing domain names.."
This has been happening a lot lately, with the million of domain names expiring. They are being gobbled up by spam sites. There are so many that if you don't check your links pretty often, you can end up having links to porn sites and all the other junkers.
|Many site owners had no idea they were doing something Google didn't like, and if they are diligent enough to remove the offending content, why not restore them? If they aren't restored, they will have to keep looking for other potential problems, making content changes, removing and re-adding their site, etc... all in a futile attempt to restore lost PR. |
But (in devil's advocate mode here) surely that would be an invitation for the more unscrupulous webmasters to experiment with dodgy tactics. OK, that way of hiding layers didn't work this month, wait a month until it gets back and try something else. Your second sentence is a very good reason for Google to keep it the way it is....If nobody knows quite what triggered a penalty and isn't certain of what might remove it, they are liable a) to ignore Google, which is their right just as it is Google's to ignore them, or b) to make it as clean as possible in all areas.
I'm sure you are right, maintaining webmaster uncertainty is a motivator, Stever... Nevertheless, as Google becomes ever-more dominant in web searches, their responsibility not to unfairly penalize individual sites goes up.
I don't think that it's practical for a webmaster to ignore Google, and I don't think that any responsible business should choose to ignore stakeholders arbitrarily. At least answering e-mails in a timely manner with reasonable specificity as to what needs to be corrected shouldn't be too much to ask. Will spammers do research that way? Maybe, but I don't think ignoring the legitimate concerns of non-spammers is the answer. Google isn't a small-time player any more - it's practically approaching public utility status.
I have always respected your knowledge and opinions (still do!).
We just have a difference of opinion on this topic of outbound links on a site vs outbound links in a directory type site.
I am "not" saying I am right - but that I have my own opinion.
Have a great day :)
I think we need to clarify a very important point: not all pr0's, or pr2/3 with pr0 internal links - NOT ALL OF THEM ARE FROM SPAM TECHNIQUES. not all are from cross-linking, dups, etc etc.
NOT ALL OF THEM ARE BECAUSE SOMEONE DOESN'T KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING AND HAVE STRAYED INTO SPAM.
Some of them have JUST HAPPENED.
And also, those which had some amount of cross-linking, or dups, or whatever - most people here know enough to now have a TOTALLY SQUEEKY CLEAN SITE.
The discussion must, therefore, be about a number of scenarios, in order to be fruitfull:
1) PR0 is a permanent penalty on some websites - how can we find out if this is the case, is there a criteria?
2) PR2/3 recovery, but after months no internal pr - WHY? Also, if the site used to be pr5, and even with the offending links gone it STILL should be pr4/5 - why is it pr2? We need to figure out a) if its an actual PENALTY, or b) if google PR is BUST, or c) is there a further filter we don't know about
3) Pr2/3 recovery, but internal pr has come back. But why, like point 2), is the PR not approximating it's old value, even granted that it might be a bit lower now.
I just think keeping on with "people don't know the penalty", or "they haven't got rid of all the offending stuff" etc is pointless. I would say 2/3 of the people here with penaltys are very well versed on what is, in google's eyes, a "clean" site.
And I'd also just like to say that if google is applying a potential link penalty, then as soon as you do 1 external link now, you are opening yourself to risk. You may have linked to a non pr0 site, but how can u control what that site links to, and what those sites link to etc. pr0 seems like a virus, and as soon as u external link, for whatever reason, for link pop or as a service to your users, you are open for potential infection.
It would seem to me that Google is at the peak of it's popularity.
Has anyone taken note of the fact that most all the search engines that failed did so after reaching such a peak? Bad moves and unclear policy's seem to be paving the way to ruin for search engines. Maybe even inadequate pre preparation for the traffic it eventually started to generate and the number of sites it needed to index. Combine that with trying to be "different", IE: page rank, and look$ newest innovation and it becomes apparent that some strenous planning needs to be done and a fix applied quickly in order for them to stay on top.
It is only my opinion, but I do not believe that even the "experts" at Google really understand how this PR stuff works, in other words, it is the monster that is beginning to eat Googles popularity.
Just my personal opinion.
|in other words, it is the monster that is beginning to eat Googles popularity. |
Fair enough, but in my view, the growth in Google's popularity is only just at the end of the beginning. What webmasters see and what the general public perceives are two entirely different things (especially in Europe).
|I just think keeping on with "people don't know the penalty", or "they haven't got rid of all the offending stuff" etc is pointless. I would say 2/3 of the people here with penaltys are very well versed on what is, in google's eyes, a "clean" site. |
So two-thirds of the people with penalties here have "innocent" sites hit with an indiscriminate penalty? That certainly doesn't mesh with the sites that people have opened up for view that I have seen in the last few months...
Maybe Google's meteoric rise is simply an indicator of a successful search business model.
Once this is widely accepted and other search engines stop trying to make money in self-defeating ways, we'll see realistic competition to Google and things will even themselves out a little.
And, regardless of whether 2/3 of sites are innocent, or 1%, the fact still remains that many people did not know they were doing anything wrong and are trying to correct it.
In the meantime, they suffer through reduced traffic, and Google's SERPS suffer through missing resources.
And yes, of course I'm one of the great unwashed. ;)
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