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Google's 950 Penalty - Part 7



10:18 pm on Apr 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member marcia is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

< continued from: [webmasterworld.com...] >
< related threads: -950 Quick Summary [webmasterworld.com] -- -950 Part One [webmasterworld.com] >


I read in another thread that you wrote that you have a recip links page. That is probably what is causing your site some grief.

No, it certainly is not. annej's SITE is not having any grief whatsoever. There are simply some individual PAGES that are not ranking for the chosen keywords.

In addition, having reciprocal links (or a recip links page, or even a whole directory with links) is NOT what causes this phenomenon. There are sites with reciprocal link pages and even directories with a percentage of recips that are untouched and have top-notch rankings. And that is a verifiable fact.

Remember, the algo is completely automated with very little human input. You probably need to take a long hard look at who your linking to and if they are spamming.

This has nothing whatsoever to do with OBLs and nothing whatsoever to do with link spam.

Remember, Google guidelines state not to have your site link to bad neighborhoods. If one of the sites you are linking to is spamming Google, it can have a drastic effect on your site. Check to see if all the sites you link to are following Google guidelines. If they are not, you might want to drop that particular link.

Linking out to ONE? Did I read that right and/or interpret that correctly? Or am I seeing things? Where in the world did that theory come from?

If a site is SPAMMING by a pattern of linking out to bad neighborhoods, it'll cause a problem with the SITE - not individual content pages that are simply not ranking. This is not the case, not by any means.

I don't know how many times it has to be repeated and requested to please not try to accuse anyone with this phenomenon of somehow spamming, because there's no basis in reality and it can cause unnecessary stress that's unfounded and unjustified and without basis. Trying to help is always appreciated, but this is serious, it's no place for folks to be chasing windmills.

[edited by: tedster at 9:16 pm (utc) on Feb. 27, 2008]


6:15 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

There's an interesting report from errorsamac in this thread:

I'm in the process of testing this out, but I think I have found a flaw in how Google
is counting links and/or preventing Google bombs. If you have a high PR site
(PR7 for example) and you link to a normal, non-authority, PR3 site, you can take
that site out of the SERPs for the particular keyword or phrase. I just tested it on
one of my sites that I don't care about...

...did the url you targeted go to "end of results" -- as in what people
call the "-950 penalty"?

Yes, I just checked and both sites are hit with the -950 penalty....
...as far as I know, there is no known way to recover from this
(other than to get good links to offset the bad links)


6:42 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Will be interesting to hear if others can confirm - if so, hunting season will be on.

But how do we know "errorsamac" is not a linkseller with a supply of PR7's he wants to unload :)


7:11 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Prolly... Wouldn't be very fair to those that issue online press releases.

For instance, the company I work for has a new product coming out that this industry has been after for a VERY long time. We finally cracked the code.

When I make the press release, would I get penalized since it's very likely that some high PR sites will have my link?

Sounds kinda dumb.... unless G actually didn't have the foresight to see that.


7:20 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Another way I've done this is by getting TONS of spam links pointed at a domain with the targeted anchor text. So if your site is all about "Blue Widgets", get 1000+ spam links pointed at it with "Blue Widgets" as the anchor text.

The PR7 trick seemed to work quicker than the spam links, probably because it took Google more time to find all of the spam links as compared to the PR7 link.

As I mentioned in a different thread, my motive for posting this is to raise awareness in hopes that Google actually fixes the problem.


7:28 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

MrStitch - From what I can tell, the links have to be from an off-topic website. So if you have a bunch of links from casino/pharmacy related sites pointing to your "homemade blue widgets" site, using the same or almost identical anchor text, you can take the page down in the SERPs.

As far as press releases and/or news sites, I assume that they have enough trust that you won't be negatively affected.


7:34 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

So, errorsamac you say if SITE "A" with PR7 link to SITE "B" with specific keyword and less PR, Site "B" will be penalized (-950) or viceversa?



8:04 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I've also seen several cases where it looked like this was happening. I highlighted the idea here because it seems to play into the -950 phenomenon - but the 950 shows up in other cases as well. So I see this idea as a clue, not "the answer".


8:18 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

TaLu - Yes. I bought a single PR7 link on an off-topic website and pointed it one of my pages which was previously ranked on page 1 for a few keywords. The page then saw the -950 penalty.

Off-Topic Site PR7 -> My Site PR3 (page updated weekly)

I have another example where I got a bunch of spam links pointed at another page (different domain) with similar anchor text and that also saw the -950 penalty.

Lots of spam links (PR0+) -> My Site PR3 (page static since late 2006)


8:52 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Thanks for your reply errorsamac.

About the first example I think is logic because Matt cuts say that Google declarate the war to the purchased links and the bot can identify a link in a non-topic site.

But about the second example I dont know because if I want down the rank of my competition for example, and I have a lot of spam sites, I only need to point to my victim and voila! the site desapear from the well positions.

Its the negative to google bombing.


8:57 pm on Apr 26, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

If Google declares war on purchased links, what is stopping you from buying off-topic links to your competitors?


5:17 pm on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

Nothing it seems. When is a general content site off topic? IE WP?


5:35 pm on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

In my example, it was a "computer" related site pointing to a "widget" site (where widget has absolutely nothing to do with computers).


2:27 am on Apr 28, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

well it seems I have been 950ed. :( We don't do link exchanges but have been pestered lately with gazzilions of people asking :\.


3:46 am on Apr 28, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

Hmm, having read this now all. We bounce back and forth since 3 months. Mostly the 950 lasts 5 days. We had the longest stability when we did not work on the site as we were on holidays and offline business trip. This pesky penalty might be related to doing more work on our site. This utter frustration that more work seems to ALWAYS be linked to some form of penalty then frustration no work we jump back... then hope arises work back to penalty and so on. Since we have directory, videos, pictures, wiki, jobs , event calendar and so on, I have no idea really which part is the guilty one. People come still in by the by nature content poor directory, where we only allow people in by email application and if it fits to the sites theme and the fsites are worth linking to. Naturally in the wiki we have many people trying to get their site linked, which I usually revert if it's not fitting.

As we are the main portal in our sector we are linked by all relevant pages, associations and unis but obviously link also back to them. This has happened organic since nearly 10 years so somewhat of a unintended reciprocal going on there obviously.

< continued here; [webmasterworld.com...] >

[edited by: tedster at 11:11 pm (utc) on April 29, 2007]

This 194 message thread spans 7 pages: 194

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