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This 85 message thread spans 3 pages: 85 ( [1] 2 3 > >     
Over Optimization June 2 Penalty - steps to reverse it
newborn




msg:4151943
 2:47 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

My business model was building mini-websites with strong content. However we chose topics that we could fill out using 5 to 10 pages.

Many of these were local based and we ranked well for them. We had upwards of almost 100+ web properties and growing. We did use Adsense and other methods of monetizing the websites, we were not MFA sites, we sold our own ebooks, free downloads of guides etc. And updated the site if there were any relevant changes. All the local sites were on the same IP as well because we weren't doing any Spam practices and the content was well written and not Spun.

We invested heavily in that arena.

In May we hired a "reputable" link building team on an outsourcing website that indicated the method they were going to use was article marketing. So we agreed as our link building was quite slow and we were hearing so much about Caffeine.

On June 2 all traffic fell and I mean off a cliff. I was stunned. We did not know what was happening as most of our domains targeted longtail traffic, keywords were even in the domain. So we thought the Google MayDay would help us.

I have checked and all the sites are still in the index, none are de-indexed as they show when I do an exact search, and site:mydomainname they all show up. Though the cache date does not seem to change.

After discussing with the link builders they said they used an automated link building service to distribute the articles. I cried foul and demanded a refund - which the gave me - however nowhere close to the revenue being lost as a result of their actions.

Having read on the forum I have seen others address the June 2 update as an over optimization update and suggested several methods to regain rankings.

I have added these and wanted to hear thoughts on which would be appropriate to conduct:

- Get more authority in bound links and wait 2 weeks to 4 months
- Add more content and get more authority inbound links and wait 2 weeks to 4 months
- Dump those sites, take the content and create new websites
- Send Google a reinclusion request and wait doing nothing

If anyone who has been hit by the June 2 update and has seen a return of normal traffic can they weigh in here...

 

kd454




msg:4152011
 6:49 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

I don't think it was your links, I have a few of these small sites with great content as well. Same thing has happened to them, was looking for this post. Back to building real sites :)

I figured google would get tired of these sites, thank god they did now and not after I invested too much more $

Maybe they will comeback who knows? These sites have become a virus on the internet gorg will do something about them.. I think they devalued exact domain names. I have looked at for other small niche sites I had seen ranking and there gone as well.

You can pretty much blame it on the people making the one page total crap sites and using the exact domain name to rank on page 1, you think google is/was going to just let that crap stay out there forever. Then people like us/me who made a few small sites with good content get hit as well.

I think I can get mine to rank, will take time and effort and not rely on just a few article links and the exact domain name.

[edited by: kd454 at 6:56 pm (utc) on Jun 13, 2010]

Victor1




msg:4152012
 6:50 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

I was hit hard as well with all the sites I seod and want to reverse it as well.

Over the years I have found what worked and just repeated it over and over - I thought it was straight forward white hat SEO but something is upsetting the search engine now. Some combination of something>

I am looking into incoming link diversity and also into re-thining of use of keywords. Eg. Top of Silo keywords, or root keywords more to rank for long tail.

tedster




msg:4152026
 7:08 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Just to clarify - all three of you saw a drop that began on June 2?

newborn




msg:4152027
 7:16 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

I am looking into incoming link diversity and also into re-thining of use of keywords. Eg. Top of Silo keywords, or root keywords more to rank for long tail.


I am planning to do this too, but am thinking of removing more adsense ads and adding more content. This was actually going to be a task in adding more content but now I guess I have to get to it sooner than later.

Eventually I guess they will see me as non-spammy.

So I guess to answer my own question...

I will have to just add more content and get better authority links.

newborn




msg:4152028
 7:17 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Yep... ranked #1 June 2 - oblivion the morning of June 3

kd454




msg:4152032
 7:36 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Tedster - "Just to clarify - all three of you saw a drop that began on June 2?"

Yes I noticed a drop in traffic on all my small sites with exact keyword in domains, low in bound links or non quality.

Mine have not dropped off the map just a page or 2 from #1.

All my normal larger, older sites have been doing very well.

vandread




msg:4152059
 9:28 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

just to weight in that the June 2 change did not only hurt small sites. My large site was hit as well, as where others that I know of.

mygod2010




msg:4152068
 9:43 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Same thing for 2 websites, -90% on June 2.

And I know that I am not alone, a few friends have seen the same thing.

mygod2010




msg:4152070
 9:47 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Just to clarify.

For one website, a lot of link building.

For the second one, 1/2 paid links, nothing more.

Robert Charlton




msg:4152091
 11:07 pm on Jun 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

Mod's note: Let's try to restrict discussion here to the original topic, which is about sites that lost traffic around June 2 and about steps taken to rebuild it.

It's not a discussion about lost traffic in general, or about feelings regarding Google because of this.

peterdaly




msg:4152132
 2:23 am on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Could be an algorithm tweak of the mayday update.

I had 350k of monthly visitors wiped out due to the Florida update years ago, but it was much different for me than most others. Traffic for most people affected dropped to nothing all at once. For me, the update was a non-event...but the turning point in my traffic growth as the screws on the duplicate comment filters were slowly tightened. It took about six months to go to zero...but it is clear that florida is when the root cause happened.

Mayday could be similar...especially since goggle publicly acknowledged the change.

vandread




msg:4152263
 11:19 am on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Newborn, can it be that the drop was caused by the link building? Maybe you should request the links to be taken down and include the steps undertaken in the reconsideration request?

One webmaster in this thread here at Webmaster World

[webmasterworld.com...]

mentioned that his website returned to old traffic levels after removing internal links to the homepage.

This also makes me believe that this could be some sort of over-linking penalty or filter. This would go hand in hand with the fact that (on my affected site) not all keywords have been affected, only some.

[edited by: tedster at 12:23 pm (utc) on Jun 14, 2010]

Andydandy




msg:4152333
 1:53 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Between 1st and 2nd June I lost 75% of the G referrals. Incredible.
And since then, it is a flat line...
And considering that on 1st April I lost 50%, the site is almost disappearing from the web ... :-(

workingNOMAD




msg:4152352
 2:39 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

These updates highlights why you should never put all those eggs in one basket, Google has a habit of making you drop your basket.

Drew




msg:4152356
 2:43 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

so everyone that had a drop was doing some link dev?

Andylew




msg:4152360
 2:49 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

ALL client sites which I run and these vary from 5 page sites to 1000 pages all droped on the 2nd june to flatline in WMT but actual traffic stayed the same. They all then recovered on the 9th (caffine launch) WMT has not been updated since then which leads me to the conclusion that this drop (in WMT at least) was caffine related.

Perhpas some sites were dropped from the index short term (like I belive 90% of our pages were in may), I still firmly belive there is a massive re-indexing happening which is affecting different sites at different times.

It will be interesting to see what happens at the start of July, in theory there will be no more monthly dance which seems to have been when all the problems have arrisen in may/june.

mhansen




msg:4152366
 2:59 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

I saw a several year old site suffer the same hit starting June 2. By June 4th, we lost 80% of more of Google referred traffic.

Pure speculation makes it look like a bounce-rate/page thing to me... the site still ranks well for 2-5 word (head and longtail) phrases with low bounce rates, but pages that were very popular with higher bounce rates seem to be suffering the most. (Or maybe it's just amplified due to the page volume)

Some of the visitor traffic has returned (almost like the index is learning as it's being rebuilt) but still down 35-40% from Mar-Apr levels on the same pages/terms.

Again... purely speculative... but I have been taking steps to increase visitor experience.

- Moved it to a faster, dedicated server.
- Working on reducing bounce on pages/phrase matches that still do well.
- Looking at the pages that used to do well, and reducing bounce on them as well.

As far as links go... I have never really had a link plan for this site and all have just come naturally. That said, its not thousands of links either!

Fern




msg:4152429
 5:09 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

- Get more authority in bound links and wait 2 weeks to 4 months
*Yes, but don't 'stop and wait'
- Add more content and get more authority inbound links and wait 2 weeks to 4 months
*Yes, but don't 'stop and wait'
- Dump those sites, take the content and create new websites
*No
- Send Google a reinclusion request and wait doing nothing
*No

Keep building good links, and build links at a constant rate. If I am understanding you correctly, waiting 2 weeks to 4 months means do nothing on those sites in that time? Don't just stop building links.

I doubt the links that company built is what caused your sites to get dumped down in the serps.

kaene




msg:4152445
 5:35 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

I can confirm that it started June 1. I track my sites daily from different cities, and June 1 almost all my micro niche sites dropped many positions, checking it from 2 of my trackers somewhere in California, but from one in Atlanta I continued seeing the same rankings at least 2 or 3 days, so I can guess that Google updated first datacenters in California and slowly spread it to other states.

incrediBILL




msg:4152450
 5:43 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

article marketing


Article marketing aka SPAM

The minute you submit those articles thousands of people download and republish them, often in seedy spammy sites Google may already be penalizing.

The internet is flooded with the same junk from bad sites linking back to your site and VOILA! you're probably punished simply by association.

Do these articles have some of the same exact content as your site?

Here's something Google's Maile Ohye just said at SES Toronto [toprankblog.com] that may be relvant:
What about microsites? Are they a good idea?

Microsites were originally created to dominate search results. It was originally kind of a spammy technique. I normally donít suggest it, Mayday and future updates are only looking for quality sites. If you want to dominate search results, you can do things like add videos/images and other data. Microsites confuse users, there are links coming in to another site that isnít your main site, and they are hard to maintain as now you have multiple sites. Itís a jarring user experience; I donít think they are going to work in search results in the future as they did in the past.


Sounds like you may have a double whammy working against you.

netmeg




msg:4152475
 6:33 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

Interesting.

I've been tracking a keyword in a spreadsheet for about three years now. It's a single keyword that I really don't deserve to rank for by itself, but at times has climbed as high as #3. It's almost always been in the top 20. On June 3rd, it dropped down to #67, and now it's hovering around #80. I don't really need it, and my normal keyword rankings are all fine, better than ever really, and my traffic is way up over last year. But this one keyword dropped so precipitously between June 2 and June 3 I couldn't help but notice.

I wasn't optimizing for it, or out link building, or doing anything at all really except for tracking it. And, I'm the first to admit I wasn't strictly the most relevant site for it in the first place.

But that (along with the posts above) would lead me to believe that something did change on that date.

aristotle




msg:4152518
 7:30 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

incrediBILL
That interview with Google's Maile Ohye, that you linked to, is well worth reading. Thanks

Sgt_Kickaxe




msg:4152570
 9:19 pm on Jun 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

A site full of keyword targeted articles, each page targeting it's own keyword, is no longer effective. If the site isn't about keyword the page won't rank for longtail->keyword and it looks like number of times (%) the keyword is used elsewhere, along with location/relevance, is a major consideration. exact match titles are out too on longtail.

Matt Cutts made mention of these things in his latest I/O website review youtube video, about 25 and 35 minutes in.

newborn




msg:4152628
 12:25 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

Ok so I guess everyone thinks that this will result in throw away sites.

seoN00B




msg:4152691
 3:28 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

I was penalized last month for aggressive link building. My ranking was flat from top 10 to none. What I did is I stopped the link building on that URL. Then this month it came back strong at top 5. :)

kd454




msg:4152698
 4:03 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

I have a couple of my niche sites that have decent links going to them that are doing good still. The ones with just article links are doing poor, go figure. This was just an experiment of mine that I am going to discontinue.

I will build decent links to my existing niche sites and discontinue the experiment. I am kinda glad to see Google do this there was just so many very poor 1 pages sites ranking well, something had to be done.

Sgt_Kickaxe




msg:4152725
 5:11 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

newborn, quite the opposite, it's going to take consistent site wide effort to land more longtail results. Thin sites got hit hard too, perhaps harder.

OMZen




msg:4152738
 5:46 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

What kind of link profiles those sites had before ?

Article marketing / submitting to thousands of article directories is utter waste of resources. But I donít think they are cause of your dramatic fall across the board.

Otherwise itíd be too easy to nuke competitors by just submitting their sites to those crappy article farms.

Google seems to have tightened the noose further on low quality links and whatever little link equity they used to pass seems to have been killed thereby leading to noticeable rankings reset.

Robert Charlton




msg:4152740
 5:57 am on Jun 15, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google seems to have tightened the noose further on low quality links and whatever little link equity they used to pass seems to have been killed thereby leading to noticeable rankings reset.

OMZen - Interesting difference in emphasis that I see between your take on link equity and other interpretations I'm hearing.

Some are saying that links are simply losing effectiveness after jumping two site levels (or rather, two clicks). As I'm thinking about how links should work in a Google that can take advantage of the Caffeine infrastructure, that doesn't make sense to me.

It does make sense, though, that low quality links should fizzle out that quickly.

This 85 message thread spans 3 pages: 85 ( [1] 2 3 > >
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