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This 534 message thread spans 18 pages: < < 534 ( 1 ... 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 [16] 17 18 > >     
Penguin Recovery Tips - a think tank thread
bostonyear




msg:4451493
 7:35 pm on May 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

Since the main Penguin Update thread has 700 posts and counting, I'm hoping to start a new thread solely focused on Penguin recovery tips. I have a site that was hit by Penguin and I am trying to work my way out of it.

I think reason I was penalized was my content. I was inadvertently keyword stuffing. This is just the way I have been writing content for years. I have updated the content on my main pages where I have fixed the blatant keyword stuffing. My density levels are much more in line. My main question is:

I have over 80 blog posts that have some instances of keyword stuffing. Do I need to go back and fix all of these pages? Some of the posts are over 3 years old? I also have some really old pages that are buried in my site that may have poor content. Should fixing these old pages be a priority?

 

Hissingsid




msg:4462389
 10:18 am on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

Matt Cutts We’ve done a good job of ignoring boilerplate, site wide links.In the last few months, we’ve been trying to make the point that not only is link buying like that not doing any good, we’re turning the dial up to let people know that certain link spam techniques are a waste of money.

I'm starting to wonder if ignoring sitewide links from satellite sites is what has affected my main site. If that is the case I may need to find ways to vary the links and find which areas of templates they are ignoring. If it is the footer for example I'd like to know how they are identifying it. If I call the div something other than footer would that help? I can feel an experiment comming on.

Wilburforce




msg:4462411
 11:23 am on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

WMT are very fast to add new links but very slow to remove old


I blocked 2,300+ links from a suspect site - looks like negative SEO that has paid off, as previously posted - on 8 May. Blocking took immediate effect on the backlinks, but they have only been disappearing in dribs and drabs in WMT (1,373 still showing this morning).

By the time they have all gone AND Penguin has run again my site will have been out of the picture for the main two-word money term for a couple of months at peak enquiry time.

themaninthejar




msg:4462412
 11:25 am on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

My homepage cache finally has a date after I completed all my on-page sitewide adjustments. Now I suppose I have to wait for a Penguin update to see if I've cracked it...

Planet13




msg:4462452
 1:50 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

@ Wilburforce

I blocked 2,300+ links from a suspect site...


How does one "block" links from an external site?

(I assume this is someone else's site.)

Hissingsid




msg:4462466
 2:22 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

How does one "block" links from an external site?


You can use your .htaccess file to return a 403 error based on the referrer site. For specific code you would probably do better asking on a more relevant forum like [webmasterworld.com ]

GreenDog18




msg:4462473
 2:31 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

If links are truly a problem then I would believe it wouldn't even be necessary to remove them and also it would require more action than simply "blocking" links you think are bad.

Google is more than liking simply blocking any kind of benefit these links pass. So if you remove the link you are still going to be left with the same outcome/same traffic.

Basically I wouldn't waste my time trying to remove links and spend my time building quality links that will benefit my site.

Wilburforce




msg:4462478
 2:42 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

How does one "block" links from an external site?


To clarify: I registered with the external site, then blocked my own site from their listings (which worked). There have been no links to any of my pages from that site since I did that, but Google hasn't reindexed all their pages (and probably won't in any hurry, as Google rates the site as spam), so 1,373 backlinks from that site - all with my two-word main money term as anchor-text - are still listed in WMT.

Wilburforce




msg:4462479
 2:44 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

And

Basically I wouldn't waste my time trying to remove links


I think it very likely that those are the main issue with that search term and my site.

GreenDog18




msg:4462482
 2:52 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

I understand you think that is the problem. But, IMO Google is not "penalizing" you for having those links. They are simply devaluing those links (which may appear like a penalty.) and also will cause your rankings to drop.

SO once you delete the links there will be no penalty to be lifted and you will not see any noticeable difference in your SERPS.

Planet13




msg:4462484
 2:53 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

To clarify: I registered with the external site, then blocked my own site from their listings (which worked).


Ahh... thanks for the clarification.

so the external site was like a directory that allowed business owners (such as yourself) to "claim their listing" and manage how that site links to yours, right?

Hissingsid




msg:4462487
 3:00 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

Basically I wouldn't waste my time trying to remove links and spend my time building quality links that will benefit my site.


What a load of twaddle!

There is quite clearly at least three issues with backlinks going on here.

1. Anchor text issues
2. Sitewide links, small scale
3. Sitewide links, large scale

I'm starting to think that small scale sitewide links in the footer for example are just devalued or ignored but there is a threshold or a ratio that leads to something more dramatic. In this case trying to get them removed is possibly the only answer.

I am concerned in my own case that removing the small scale sitewide backlinks I have might actually do more harm than good.

Its almost like the old advertising adage. 50% of my backlinks are working I just don't know which 50%.

Wilburforce




msg:4462490
 3:07 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

so the external site was like a directory that allowed business owners (such as yourself) to "claim their listing" and manage how that site links to yours, right?


Correct.

seoArt




msg:4462502
 3:19 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

crobb305, it took about 4 weeks for me to get a response on the reconsideration request.

Wilburforce




msg:4462509
 3:23 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

I understand you think that is the problem. But, IMO Google is not "penalizing" you for having those links. They are simply devaluing those links (which may appear like a penalty.) and also will cause your rankings to drop.


My site was #1 for the main money term before some third party posted them, so they had no beneficial effect to begin with. If they had simply been discounted it would have made no difference.

If you have a better idea than the rest of us about how Penguin operates, please share it.

maheshr




msg:4462597
 6:24 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

I understand you think that is the problem. But, IMO Google is not "penalizing" you for having those links. They are simply devaluing those links (which may appear like a penalty.) and also will cause your rankings to drop.


I beg to differ. One of my site was on around #75 th position for a low competition keyword without any backlinks. Then I built around 10 k backlinks and it came into front page of google #6 th position and stayed there for some months. Then I got WMT unnatural link message and after 1 week my site is showing around #650+ th position for that low competition keyword. So it looks like there is clearly a penalty exists for those links.

btw, I deleted the whole pages from that website except homepage 1 week ago. But I deleted the content from the homepage and made it a blank page. No theme, no word or whatsover. But today it is on the #174 th position with zero content. It was beyond #650 since 2 months. So it looks like it imrpoved with zero content. Can anyone tell me what is going on?

Wilburforce




msg:4462617
 7:52 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

So it looks like it imrpoved with zero content.


Priceless!

MarvinH




msg:4462729
 11:29 pm on Jun 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

So it looks like it imrpoved with zero content.


You've removed the over optimization well, so now the rankings are improving. :-)

smallcompany




msg:4462741
 12:37 am on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

I'm starting to think that small scale sitewide links in the footer for example are just devalued or ignored but there is a threshold or a ratio that leads to something more dramatic.

Sounds reasonable.

That's why Penguin to some websites could be like a plain wasp trying to bite an elephant while to some other is like the same wasp biting on a tiny fly and eating it up.
Same thing having way different effect depending on the total backlink portfolio quality (however G sees it).

maheshr




msg:4462810
 5:52 am on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

You've removed the over optimization well, so now the rankings are improving. :-)


Keywords density was under 4.5% and I tried to reduce some but no use. I wanted to start over with a new domain. Thats why I deleted the pages and content and removed them from google except homepage. Now it is nowhere. Sometimes it is dancing around 110# th

Hissingsid




msg:4462839
 8:15 am on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

If, like me, you have benefited in the past from keyword rich backlinks in the template of sites that you own, control or have developed for others then I think you have to ask yourself what would happen if you lost that benefit. Consider that vs your competition who used other link building.

If that would explain what has happened to you then it is not Penguin that did it and it is far easier to understand and therefore make a recovery plan.

themaninthejar




msg:4462865
 10:10 am on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Today I'm sitting out on page 16 of the UK serps for my co.uk site directly under an Australian site offering similar services based in Perth. I'm attempting to see the funny side, but I do take some small solace in the belief that this cannot be what Google intends to be happening in the long term.

While waiting for my onsite recovery measures to take hold, I have succumbed to one act of de-linking. The biggest number of backlinks I have are just over 1,600 from Updowner. The opinion across many forums seems to be divided, so I bit the bullet, registered and blocked my site from being listed.

cclayton




msg:4462957
 2:10 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

I too had the same debate and de-registered from Updowner. I see it as providing no benefit to be in terms of link juice or visitors so see it as no real loss.

driller41




msg:4463001
 4:14 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Scanning this thread reveals very few recoveries - has anyone seen any recoveries from a Penguin demotion recently - I mean a decent initial fall of a number of pages happening on the 24th April rather than a drop of a few positions?

aristotle




msg:4463025
 4:53 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

has anyone seen any recoveries from a Penguin demotion recently - I mean a decent initial fall of a number of pages happening on the 24th April rather than a drop of a few positions?


I'm not sure what you mean by this. A drop of a few positions isn't a trivial matter in most cases. It can cause almost as big a traffic loss as losing a hundred positions.

driller41




msg:4463038
 5:25 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Yes of course any drop is serious, from what I have seen generally the larger the drop the harder it is to recover - hence my focus on larger drops where there is less noise to confuse the issue.

aristotle




msg:4463075
 6:47 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)


Yes of course any drop is serious, from what I have seen generally the larger the drop the harder it is to recover - hence my focus on larger drops where there is less noise to confuse the issue.


Thanks -
I'm not sure whether this distinction between big and small rankings drops from Penguin has been discussed already, but it could be significant: Maybe a big drop is caused by an actual "penalty", whereas a small drop is simply the result of a backlink devaluation.

driller41




msg:4463085
 7:35 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Overall my Penguined sites initially had a 1 page drop which then got worse and they are now -50, after that I stop looking so I dont know how deep they drop.

I have tried lots on page SEO stuff - deoptimising, non of it has worked so I am starting to think my problem is off page.

Perhaps a reranking cannot occur until they run Penguin again?

Anyway I will either look at the backlinks or start some new sites and let these sit for a while.

Gemini23




msg:4463086
 7:47 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Wilburforce - how exactly did you BLOCK the spam backlinks? I have been waiting since January to have some links to be removed from WMT when I know 1 site-wide link was removed showing as thousands of links in WMT.

Beachboy




msg:4463092
 7:55 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Status update:

One of my business sites ranked very high for several (to us) important kw phrases. With Penguin, we got knocked down to 9th place for the most important kw and were not to be found anywhere within the first three pages of results for the others.

As of last night, things began to improve. There was even more improvement by noon today:

Most important kw: 4th place
Second most important kw: 6th place
Third most important kw: 4th place
Fourth most important kw: 12th place
Sixth most important kw: 14th place

What we did:
1. Revised the menu to remove any suggestion of kw stuffing.
2. Rewrote the text on all pages and revised headlines and title tags, again to remove any possible kw stuffing, emphasis on natural language.
3. Added two new pages with fresh material, page filenames have keywords but are not hyphenated (other pages still have hyphens in file names)

I have not even looked at backlinks. To the best of my knowledge, there aren't any suspect links.

This is, I hope, a general improvement. With any luck, the site will continue to rise for its important kws and the improvement will be permanent. We shall see.

We also have a backup site which we've freshly tuned to stand in for the main site. This is a strategy we've had in place for years, one of those "What the heck are we gonna do is Google goes nuts?" provisions. If it turns out the main site fully recovers, I will detune the backup site to keep it out of the rankings.

Good luck to all.

Wilburforce




msg:4463095
 7:57 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Overall my Penguined sites initially had a 1 page drop which then got worse and they are now -50


That is my experience, too, and

I am starting to think my problem is off page


I am pretty sure mine is off-page, and

Perhaps a reranking cannot occur until they run Penguin again?


I can't be sure that the off-page issues are the problem until they reindex the third-party pages AND THEN run Penguin again.

tedster




msg:4463102
 8:15 pm on Jun 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

AND THEN run Penguin again

That's the key, isn't it? Penguin was only re-run one time on May 26. That would be the only time a true Penguin recovery could have happened.

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