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Trying to fix unnatural links penalty

2:08 pm on May 18, 2013 (gmt 0)

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joined:Dec 7, 2009
posts: 52
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We received a request from a site owner to reconsider domain.com for compliance with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

We’ve reviewed your site and we still see links to your site that violate our quality guidelines.
Specifically, look for possibly artificial or unnatural links pointing to your site that could be intended to manipulate PageRank. Examples of unnatural linking could include buying links to pass PageRank or participating in link schemes.


Google Search Quality Team

My main website has been hit by a manual penalty at the beginning of March and I still don't find any way to fix it.

A brief history:
- 20 February: notice of hacked wordpress for subdomain1.domain.com (low traffic blog)
- 22 February: notice of hacked wordpress for subdomain2.domain.com (low traffic blog)
- 25 February: notice of suspected hacking of www.domain.com (high traffic website, 5.000+ pages )
- 26 February: notice of suspected hacking of forum.domain.com (high traffic forum)
- 30 February: reconsideration request sent for both subdomains (moved to a clean install), for the forum and for the main domain (which wasn't affected by any hack)
- 7 March: answer to reconsideration request: "site violate quality guidelines."
- 11 March: 20% traffic drop, ranking drop for www.domain.com

After 11 March traffic and rankings continued dropping for www.domain.com (forum wasn't affected), right now I am still trying to solve this issue, the website has 50% - 60% traffic drop and I haven't find yet what triggered this warning and a penalty.
I lost all the traffic for single word and 2-word keywords, I still get long tail traffic (3+ words) but the most important sections have gone out of top 100.

What I find "interesting" is that in subdomain1.domain.com I removed ALL outgoing links (I kept some to www.domain.com with rel="nofollow"), I used the disavow tool to disavow EVERY domain linking to subdomain1.domain.com (according to links I see in GWT and OpenSiteExplorer). It seems disavow tool is not working, since after the reconsideration request I still get this message in reply.

What I don't understand is: why subdomain1.domain.com still violates google guidelines about unnatural links and/or link schemes? What should I do to fix it?!?! Maybe disavow tool is effective after X weeks?
3:12 pm on Aug 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

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joined:Dec 7, 2009
posts: 52
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Few minutes ago I received a message: manual penalty revoked.

Very happy for that, but I don't understand what to do now, because I still see the same message under "manual actions": "Unnatural links to your site — impacts links".

Will this message disappear soon?

I see the same manual action message for every subdomain, even for one used as a content delivery network. Should I fill a reconsideration request for every subdomain?

[edited by: aakk9999 at 5:45 pm (utc) on Aug 26, 2013]
[edit reason] Moved post to this thread [/edit]

7:13 am on Sept 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

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joined:Dec 7, 2009
posts: 52
votes: 0

Quick update: after 6 days, manual action message has disappeared, back in serp for some high traffic keyword (from nowhere to #100+), no change in traffic.
This 32 message thread spans 2 pages: 32

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