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Infographics - can they cause a penalty?

     

jaffstar

2:52 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I just watched the Matt Cutts video on Infographics where he suggests having a rel-nofollow tag added.

Can infographics get your site a manual penalty action ?

linkbuildr

3:50 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)



I've seen people get penalized for having a keyword rich anchor in their embed code.

alika

4:28 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



And I've seen sites that have do-follow links in their infographic embed codes that do not get any penalties. Not even an unnatural link warning.

It all depends on the authority level of your site.

If your site does not get massive mentions and links from other top tier sites, I suggest you listen to Cutt's advice.

brotherhood of LAN

4:41 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brotherhood_of_lan is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



It's one of those things that people thought was an easier way to pass link juice that happened to get on the radar. I don't think there's any particular rules about infographics other than "don't appear to be purposely creating them to increase the ranking profile of your site". All IMO of course.

jaffstar

6:46 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I've seen people get penalized for having a keyword rich anchor in their embed code.


The infographic has about 70% of the links with Brand name, the balance have anchor text links.

We are trying to figure if this was the reason for a manual action that has now been downgraded.

Its tough when the Infographic is hosted on a really credible site, do you take it down (rel no follow) or not...

Robert Charlton

2:59 am on May 12, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



The infographic has about 70% of the links with Brand name, the balance have anchor text links.

jaffstar - Sorry to say that this is a smoking gun that might cause you some problems, because there's no way it could be accidental. The pattern conforms to popular suppositions about percentages of keyword anchors (which is I assume what you meant by "anchor text links") that might remain under the radar. The brand name in your link anchor would be an anchor text link as well... just not as obviously manipulative.

Google has always been big on intent... and here the intent to manipulate is very clear. Why else would you be changing anchor text on an infographic?

Here's a thread on the topic in our Link Development Forum from July 2012, which refers to a Matt Cutts/Eric Enge interview that has a whole section on infographics...

Infographic Links Might Be Discounted In The Future?
July 2012
http://www.webmasterworld.com/link_development/4474209.htm [webmasterworld.com]

In the thread, martinibuster comments on how Google is looking at these links, and he links to the interview at the end of the thread. Here's a Matt Cutts quote that applies to your situation...

I would not be surprised if at some point in the future we did not start to discount these infographic-type links to a degree. The link is often embedded in the infographic in a way that people donít realize, vs. a true endorsement of your site.

The question, I feel, is whether Google might have gone beyond "discounting", because of the obvious spammy intent, and that's why you have a manual action. I myself would nofollow as many of those links as I could get linking sites to change, and to disavow all the rest.

Please get back to us about how it's going.
 

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