After the recent Panda update, many websites saw a precipitous drop in their traffic. Google keeps coming with new penalties and filters. The principle behind Google’s action is that the users of search engine should be able to find information they are looking for in shortest possible time. This also means that the results that Google serves should be high in quality. Various penalties and filters are to keep quality in check and remove those websites that are taking advantage of various bad practices to come at the top of the search results.
But sometimes even the innocent webmasters fall prey to Google wrath. In this article we discuss how to decide if you are facing Google penalty and what to do about it.
Penalty or Filter –
First try to understand how penalties are different from filters. Filters are those cases where rankings drop while penalties are those cases where site is completely wiped out from Google. Filtering is similar to penalty but not a complete wipe out. Remember filters are more common and penalties are rare. As an example consider keyword stuffing. If you overdo it, you are more likely to face a filter than a penalty. The effect of filters is reversible. Once you remove the pages that are activating filters, your rankings should be back to normal. Penalties are not so easy to handle. You would have to file for a reinclusion request for your website to reappear on Google.
False impression of penalty –
Many people feel that their sites are penalized. But they are not ranking since they are in a competitive market. And their site is not as strong as that of the competition. Sometimes the ranking start dropping. This again may be due to competitor being aggressive in link building. If they are doing better than you, you will lose rank and traffic. This has nothing to do with Google penalty.
Signs of penalty –
While it is tough to find out exactly when you are penalized, here are a few quick pointers –
- You have a good link profile but
- Not ranking for any of your target keywords
- Have low page rank
- Competing websites with less number of links or lower quality are ranking above you
- If you search on Google for exact title of any random page on your website, your site does not come up
How to find out if your website is filtered –
- Monitor you search engine ranking on daily basis.
- Too much variation in your ranking
- It is tough to rank higher than a certain number
- Pages ranking are different than the one that you targeted.
More often than not, the cause behind penalty is the bad links that you built. So if you have a large number of links from link networks, it is time to get rid of them. Other reasons can be keyword stuffing, over optimized pages, links from only a select high quality websites.
How to get rid of penalties –
- First thing that you could do is to get rid of the bad links.
- And then file for a reinclusion request with Google.
If you are facing any penalty or filters, we hope that this article can help you get back on track. Do share your experiences with these below in comments.
About Contributor: Paresh is a passionate write and he loves to explore new things and write about the same. He write on different topics like Fashion, Style, Technology, Entertainment and more. He is currently exploring comparison shopping for titan watches.