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Spamming Penalty Message - Matt Cutts explains what it means
sladeetal




msg:4461551
 9:45 am on Jun 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

Hi i received this message from google, but i'm not sure what they mean.

Dear site owner or webmaster of <snip>
We've detected that some of your site's pages may be using techniques that are outside Google's Webmaster Guidelines. If you have any questions about how to resolve this issue, please see our Webmaster Help Forum for support.

Sincerely,

Google Search Quality Team

Can anyone help

[edited by: engine at 11:22 am (utc) on Jun 5, 2012]
[edit reason] See WebmasterWorld TOS [/edit]

 

Planet13




msg:4461664
 3:22 pm on Jun 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

Hey there, sladeetal:

As you may have noticed, you can't link to your site here, so it will be hard for anyone here to provide specifics.

Have you read through the google terms of service for google and tried to figure out if your site might be violating their terms of service?

If all else fails, you might have to go to the google webmaster forums and post your site there asking why you got the message. There are a LOT of haters on that forum, but there are a FEW helpful people that might be able to give you some suggestions.

Hope this helps.

phranque




msg:4461814
 10:09 pm on Jun 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

welcome to WebmasterWorld, sladeetal!

have you noticed any changes in google search traffic?
if you have google analytics on your site you might be able to get some clues based on the date(s) your google search traffic changed.

it wouldn't hurt to read through the Webmaster Guidelines:
http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35769 [support.google.com]

concentrate especially on the "Quality Guidelines" sections.

tedster




msg:4461894
 4:20 am on Jun 6, 2012 (gmt 0)

Welcome to the forums, sladeetal.

Have you seen evidence of an actual penalty? It seems to me that some people get this message and never see a real decline in their traffic or rankings.

tedster




msg:4461903
 4:42 am on Jun 6, 2012 (gmt 0)

Well, I stand corrected. At SMX Advanced today, Matt Cutts clarified that these warning messages in Webmaster Tools are manually triggered and a sign of a manual action - as opposed to an algorithmic ranking change. Algorthmic shifts do not trigger a WMT message. See You & A with Matt Cutts [seroundtable.com]

Matt also said that 99% of manual actions will receive such a message in WMT.

Note: Also according to Matt today, Google has dropped using the word "spam" internally and now just talks about manual actions and algorithmic changes.

n00b1




msg:4461927
 6:46 am on Jun 6, 2012 (gmt 0)

Great read Tedster, thanks for the link. I think he said they no longer use the word "penalty", not sure about spam "We don't use "penalty" anymore, we use "manual action" vs an algorithmic thing..."

He also confirmed google will work on a tool to let webmasters specify backlinks to "block" and that is something some people here have been asking for.

sladeetal




msg:4463201
 12:43 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

Thanks but i was looking for a more specific answer.
my site <snip> is no longer in googles serps. It looks like it has been banned. I didn't sell links.
And i still got this message from google.

Dear site owner or webmaster of <snip>
We've detected that some of your site's pages may be using techniques that are outside Google's Webmaster Guidelines. If you have any questions about how to resolve this issue, please see our Webmaster Help Forum for support.
.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 12:59 am (utc) on Jun 9, 2012]
[edit reason] no specifics, please [/edit]

phranque




msg:4463214
 1:16 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

if you have google analytics on your site you might be able to get some clues based on the date(s) your google search traffic changed.

Robert Charlton




msg:4463224
 1:40 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

I didn't sell links.

The message applies to more than selling links. It can also apply to buying links, keyword stuffing, certain kinds of link exchanges, or excessive manipulation to improve your rankings in Google.

Since you received a message, and your site is no longer in the serps, then there has been a "manual action" applied by the Google spam team. As noted in the article, they are no longer calling these penalties.

Thanks but i was looking for a more specific answer.

Not only can't you link to a site here, but, as the Google Forum Charter [webmasterworld.com] explains, you can't drop hints to lead us to your site.

That means you need to do some work yourself, look at the Google guidelines and think about what you've done that may have violated them. Chances are it's a linking problem, but perhaps you've done something else.

Check to see whether your site is indexed at all, or whether it's simply not ranking. Search for your domain name with and without the tld, do a site: domain search, and search in quotes for unique text that's on your home page. That will give you a start to begin a discussion.

We're not going to do all of your work for you. You have to help.

lucy24




msg:4463226
 1:44 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

these warning messages in Webmaster Tools are manually triggered and a sign of a manual action

Does "manual" mean what it sounds like? An individual human being looking at sites with their personal eyeballs, followed by a physical action of some kind? Just how many people has g### got working for them? How big does a site have to be to rate manual review? (Bigger than mine by orders of magnitude, duh, I'm just curious ;))

Or does "manual" really only mean "you've been promoted to the Fancy Computer"?

Robert Charlton




msg:4463230
 2:05 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

Or does "manual" really only mean "you've been promoted to the Fancy Computer"?

I assume that "manual" is saved for sites where they actually took a quick look to confirm the suspicions triggered by the "Fancy Computer". Chances are that after they look, they then "manually" push a button, rather than take time to individually type out a message. There could of course be intermediate steps.

They're calling it "manual", though, in contrast to algorithmic, where no one looks. Penguin is algorithmic.

"Manual" is probably a higher level of transgression (or lower, depending on how you think about it) than an algorithmic failing. That's my guess, Lucy, but I leave wilder interpretations to you.

with their personal eyeballs

Perhaps Google Glasses of a Special Kind. ;)

Planet13




msg:4463236
 2:47 am on Jun 9, 2012 (gmt 0)

Or does "manual" really only mean "you've been promoted to the Fancy Computer"?


Technically, it's the machine that goes ping...

Although on the other hand, I could certainly imagine Matt Cutts dressed in an orange jump suit with a fish bowl on his head, staring into a monitor and saying, "Release the manual penalty, HAL".

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