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Now over the past month I have seen they have given up and are now trying to sabotage the rankings of the top 10 in Google for the same market. They basically grabbed the ten best ranked sites and are spamming our homepage links to hundreds of blogs and guestbooks. It’s not just our site but legit competitors with great content infront of us as well.
We have no control over this. We all know this leads to penalty but what does one do if you have no control? Any suggestions?
Yes, I am documented all the blogspot blogs they are spamming them on, but isn't it to soon to send a recon? We suffered an attack last month and I do not want to send in to many recon requests. Our rankings are still fine and this attempt to destroy our rankings just started the at the beginning of this month...
On my field every single one on top has paid links, every single one! Go and compete against them
they changed this statement awhile back, essentially stating that it was very unlikely that a competitor could ruin rankings.
Placing tons of links on blogs and forums doesn't always lead to penalties. Often, it actually leads to great rankings, which is evident by some competitive inbound link analysis of websites in my genre. :)
I found all of the spammy links in WMT. We had about 302 inbound links to the homepage and within 1 week it went up to 708 with hundreds of them from "blogspot comments" linking to our homepage. Obviously a competitor took the top 10 sites in my field and spammed our homepage link out with the same anchor text to blogspot blogs.
I have documented all the backlinks and am still on the fence on whether I should send in recon or not. We have recovered from a penalty in the past and do not want to look like one of those sites that constantly sends in recon requests.
Another possibility... Blogs are notorious for having a blogroll of links on every page. If a blog decided to legitamately link to you, you could easily acquire 300 links if they had a 300 page blog.
I have a feeling that Google checks the pages manually after coming up on the radar. Based on 5 seconds they decide: bought or..? A huge flaw in the system
The penalties don't always kick in. My guess is that it varies with the trust values assigned to the linking domain and the domain linked to.
I agree, it will take the entire world to googlebowl CNN, but most of us will cave in with a few 100 blog spam comments or sitewides. I have never heard of someone coming out of -50 on their own before 1-2 years have passed, it's manual as far as I can tell.
I have to also think if Brett all of the sudden decided to link 10 sites in every page, if those were were all movie related they would be OK. If one was movies, one ppoonr, two meds and other baby diapers then it might trigger something.
If he has 10 links to Star Trek and I'm one of them, Google can't really hold it against and IMO they will figure that the blog owner likes that niche. But then, who knows.
I have never heard of someone coming out of -50 on their own before 1-2 years have passed, it's manual as far as I can tell.
-50 is a penalty for spammy links. That is for sure. Maybe for sth else, too. We've been spamming several websites with rotating links from copies of wikipedia, dmoz, autoblogs, autoforums, etc. anything that gets indexed for a few years. Worked like a charm until they caught us. Then, we got -50 across the board (penalties were coming at 1 site/week pace). We got rid of the spam links, sent reconsideration request in which we prayed the google gods and gave us time of 3 months before moving to new domains. 70% of sites got back after exactly 90 days from the penalty (they were coming back in weekly intervals). So basically, our -50 story was about spammy links and nothing else.
I will wait until caffeine is released and then possible send in a recon request to warn Google that someone is trying to deface our site and rankings...
Why the penalties then as soon as sitewides are in play Tedster?
Sometimes a large increase in blogroll links in my opinion can send a signal a website is purchasing links, especially if the originating websites show footprints of being active sellers.
To me, it is not necessarily the nature of the link (sitewide or not) as much as it is the nature of links, and the websites sending you the links.
Hopefully a proper reinclusion request will shore things up.
[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 7:38 am (utc) on Dec. 24, 2009]
[edit reason] fixed quote tag [/edit]
I believe I'm in the same boat as you. One week ago my site was -40 Penaltied on everything.
We've always been very certain everything we've done has been WHat. But looking at WMT I see that we have over 700 links from Kuwait, Turkey, all over the place. And mostly in a foreign language (Arabic I think).
And yes there seems to be the same 8-15 competitor sites included on these junk pages.
I have submitted the request to the reinclusion folks explaining that we have nothing to do with that. I pray it's enough. Our selling season starts Jan 1. And we cannot afford to lose more than a few weeks of no Google traffic.
Any other tips would be much appreciated.
If the blog comments are nofollow, why would it lead o a penalty? And does it? Technically they aren't manipulating the Serps at all.
Most if not all are not necessarily blogs...I think. (Again they're mostly in Arabic) They really look like link farms. With (now that I look at it more clearly) almost all the same exact sites/links.
They have been building up over about 3 years. I've noticed a few referring links in here and there. But I think it's ramped up in the last 6 months or so. Our niche is small but surprisingly competitive. Especially in the last 5 years or so since a very cocky "Google Stomper" has stuck his face in the mix.
And again. Let me restate. I/We have nothing to do with these sites.
[edited by: tedster at 9:35 pm (utc) on Dec. 24, 2009]
I cannot fathom what else sent Google to hit us with the -40 penalty. The weird thing was that it was for all 5 of my sites....even the other 4 (which honestly combined only get about 1/4 the traffic of my main). My main site is over 10 years old and the rest are 6,6,6, and 5 years old. Also FYI my other sites are only very loosely connected to each other. About 10% or less product overlap.
Hope you had a good holiday.
What if they are thinking that if their inbound link is found on pages that also include links to the top 10 for the keyword, then somehow that makes it look like they are in a good neighborhood?
They may not be after you... just a thought.
Hopefully you wont end up ranking for the following characters: ":)" or something of the sort.
This problem is becoming common and can easily be done to any website for under $50. Sad to say but similar stuff has happened to me in the past. I hope it doesnt affect your business! Wouldnt it be nice if everyone focused on their OWN websites?