Recovering from a Panda or Penguin attack (something more prevalent in the online realm than offline realm):
I’m not going to tell you anything about recovering from a Panda or Penguin update that hasn’t already been written, but some people (up to 27 fans/readers now) want to hear it straight from the horse’s
a**, err…. mouth so here goes…
If your site is hit with an over-optimization penalty, de-optimize it, or even better, RE-optimize it.
One thing good webmasters do, especially authority bloggers…is they curate/tweak/update their old content about once a year, maybe even more frequently than that, but I know I’d never do it more than once a year.
HISTORY is written by the victors
Revisionist History means never having to say you’re sorry, or that you’re wrong
REVISing your older content AND your inbound links is a method of revisionist history that can be used to offset any over-optimization penalties that might be affecting your sites right now.
So, the last few Algorithm updates have tried to offset “gaming of the system” via seo and link building methods, but in order to do so penalties for getting certain types of inbound linking behavior had to get put into place (this makes negative seo easier).
Many penalties experienced in the last few years were just link-loss penalties, meaning… if/when profile links LOST value, they lost some power, or a lot of power, and if your inbound portfolio was replete with and overloaded with high percentage of the one kind of backlink recently devalued, then you lost a ton of link juice and rankings, which could then be regained by focusing efforts elsewhere on different types of links acquisition.
So then it was popular to use blog networks again, with some being better than others, with some lasting longer than others, but even private ones, like truly private SELF-OWNED private networks were getting de-indexed. If/when self-owned private networks are getting indexed, then it’s not just a link type devaluation type of algorithm change, but more of a witch hunt seeking “Google-gaming networks”.
Historically, blog networks have been outed over and over again, but it’s been the quick fix that allowed people to attain “shortcut rankings” and allowed them to game the system to the point whereby their sites can make money, then they can add in higher quality links due to re-investment of site proceeds into smarter, longer-lasting link building methods and strategies.
Before, during or after the blog networks getting hit was the other witch hunt; the one for home page backlinks services. These worked well, and worked so well that there was specific attention given to them in the algorithm updates, as far as I can tell.
The footprint on HPBLs wasn’t XX # of OBLS per page, well, that might have been the easiest way to determine if a site was part of a HPBLs network (pretty easy for Google tell it’s spiders to look for sites PR2 or above, with over 15 OBLS on front page, site size under 20 pages, and with ZERO OBLs on inner pages of site, and put them into a class of their own for manual review)
A year ago it was profiles links, then HPBLs and blog networks, but this time around it’s quite different and it could spell disaster for Google unless they fix their stuff.
Nowadays, they’re targeting their version of unnatural linking via over use of anchor text and unnatural amounts of DoFollow versus NoFollow in sites’ inbound link portfolios. A DoFollow link from PRWEB.com’s website using anchor text is deemed as un-natural linking behavior according to Google and Google Webmaster Tools. W..T..F.. huh?
So where are we at today?
Negative SEO is a very real possibility, I can can only imagine that Google is willing to sacrifice long-term searchers’ experience for longer term viability as a search engine by eliminating or crushing “the little guy” who doesn’t have his/her own business, is an affiliate site/shop and not a Brand, per se…
Google has repeatedly hit small sites, thin sites, thin affiliate sites, weak content sites and the end game is the seo realm has been that authority sites, AKA Brands, end up winning and being treated favorably.
The things some of these “favored” sites have: branding, traffic, natural linking, editorial, organic links, and activity and in and of themselves, they are products…
If Since negative is such a real possibility, that leaves Authority Brands as untouchable, and impervious to negative seo, but this was/is too much of a wide swatch that was cut here, too many babies got thrown out with the bathwater by overly favoring brands, and over-penalizing link building done the way Google said to do it in years past.
Example: Get Editorial links, they said
But what if you got editorial links with anchor text, and all 10 of your editorial links were using same anchor text?
Well, This hardly ever happens with REAL editorial, natural links (maybe that’s the whole point to the over-anchor penalty?, makes perfect sense to me) so that’s a bad example, but they have in the past suggested swapping links with related sites and getting links form related sites, but if you did what came naturally and inserted keywords to let people know what your site was about, then you’d be getting penalized today for over use of anchor text, and for un-natural link building.
Revisionist history, alter your on-site cross-linking and inter-linking to reduce uniform anchor text usage.
Revisionist history- tweak/curate your old content, the content that’s probably sustaining your site with long tail traffic while your main keywords and phrases bottomed out in serps.
Revisionist linking- go edit, or try to edit..,. your existing links. ask for link removal or modification to not be to “anchor-text-y”
Build a new site and go whitehat au naturale and compare its performance to site(s) you’re trying to revive.
**MR members> read Interview with Dave M. on unique recovery options..