If your website took a dive in the Google rankings around April onwards 2012, and there’s a good chance that your site was hit by the Google penguin update.
We have a lot of experience in analyzing sites that have been hit by Google penguin or Google panda penalties and can give you a roadmap of how to get your site back to a rankings that it had prior to the penalties being imposed.
When Google first launched the penguin update on April 2012, it was targeting a number of things, one of those being the use of low quality or what's known as "spammy" backlinks pointing to (your) website.
In the past it was relatively easy to get sites ranking in Google because the majority of Google’s algorithm was based around other websites linking to yours. In simple terms, the more related websites that linked to your site the higher you were in search engines.
Now, what Google penguin did is that, it changed the game for SEO completely.
Prior to Google penguin, you were never penalized for what's called "over optimization", you could get 20,000 links pointing to your website and if they all were crappy / spammy links (low quality), the worst case scenario is that they would not help you in your rankings. They just would not count. But now penguin's come out, for the first time, links can have a negative effect on your rankings.
The second thing that happens with Google's penguin algo, is that it looks for obvious (meaning un-natural) link building. If you have been building (buying/exchanging) keywor drich anchor text links - this is seen as un-natural and thus you'll be suffering from "over optimizing” and can be penalized for that particular keyword.
For example if you were an online florist whom delivered flowers in Sydney and 50% of the backlinks pointing to your website say “florist Sydney”, all of a sudden you'll find yourself penalized because it’s very obvious that your engaged in (un-natural) link building practices. So Google now penalizes sites deliberately trying to game their rankings, by doing link building outside Google’s terms of service.
What Google wants to do is have people link to a site naturally, because they like the site, or they like the content on a particular page and therefore want to share that information with other people. So if they are a blogger they might link to it in a post of theirs - or talk about it in a forum…
…Google just wants links to be naturally given. They want it to be given not because someone paid money but because they were given on their own merit.
So, with Google penalizing low quality links, as well as un-natural links, if you've had a poor-quality SEO company working on your site (or outsourcing to India), you've probably seen a huge drop in rankings - which means a huge drop in your traffic.
What we do, is perform a detailed analysis on your website. We’ll look at your backlink profile to establish if you indeed are likely being penalised, and show you exactly where your site is getting red flagged.
You can forward this report to your in-house IT or webmaster to fix up all the issues - or we can fix them for you. Once all the issues on your website are fixed, then all you need to do is wait till the next algorithm update / refresh and (everything else being equal) your site will gain a lot of the positions it lost before the Penguin update.
In many situations, a website doesn’t get back to 100% of where they were prior to the Penguin update – especially if they didn’t have many good quality backlinks.
This is why you need to move forward with SEO in what we called a “post penguin world”. You need to adhere to all of Google’s guidelines and change your focus from “link buying” to “link earning”
Some more examples of recoveries from a manual penalties (successful re-inclusion requests)
Google manual action penalty revoked October 7, 2013
Followed by the jump in the website's overall organic visibility 10 days later:
And here is how their keywords jumped overnight, once the penalty had been removed
(actual keywords have been blocked out to protect our client)
The column marked "start" was where each keyword ranked when we started tracking its' ranking (August 2013)
The middle column is the keyword's Google (organic) ranking after the penalty was removed (October 2013)
The column marked "Week" shows the keyword's movement the after the penalty was removed.
Obviously your website is not going to jump straight to postion number one in Google after a penalty is removed, especially if the majority of your backlinks (that helped you rank before Google Penguin) are low-quality spammy backlinks. You will need to focus on content marketing, and "link earning" to build up organically given links to your website to get back to a top position in Google, however as you can see from the example above, having a penalty imposed on your site can make a massive difference in how many people see your website. The above example had a 700% increase in organic traffic overnight once the penalty was removed.
Some more recent examples of some clients:
If you would like a free analysis to see if your site has been penalised, please fill out the contact form below, or call us on:
Within Australia: (02) 8014 8432 or (08) 6555 2977
Outside Australia: +61 280148432