Tag Archives: spamdexing

Google Penguin 2.1: Who Got Hit?

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Everybody’s favorite (or least favorite) aquatic bird is back, and now site owners are once again asking how Google Penguin 2.1 has affected their website.


As he did for Penguin 1.0 and  Penguin 2.0, Glenn Gabe at G-Squared Interactive hasanalyzed 26 websites impacted by the algorithmic change to determine what factors contributed to sites that got hit.


Gabe, who has now analyzed more than 275 sites hit by Penguin, told Search Engine Watch that he believes Google Penguin 2.1 had a much greater impact than its predecesor.


Why Sites Were Hit by Google Penguin 2.1


Not surprisingly, Penguin 2.1 appears to have identified newer link spam  those links that were created at a later date than the Penguin 2.0 rollout in May, Gabe said.


Of that link spam, Gabe said the following represent the culprits:


  • Forum spamThis includes comments in forums with exact match anchor text links.
  • Forum bio spam: Biographies of forum users containing exact match anchor text links.
  • “Do follow” blogs:  Blogs that don’t add nofollow to the links posted. “Let’s face it,” Gabe said.
  • “Being listed on do-follow resource sites can absolutely send Google a signal that you are trying
  • to game links.”
  • Blogroll spam: Watch for blogroll links gone wrong. “Some may be fine,” Gabe said. “If you are unsure which ones are bad versus good, ask for help from a seasoned SEO.”
  • Spammy directories: If you’ve used spammy directories in the past, and still have links out there, Gabe said “nuke them, have them nofollowed, or disavow them.”
  • Blog comment signature spam: Google seems to be targeting these links even when they’re not followed, Gabe said.

Gabe also spotted a new culprit: classified websites showing up with heavy unnatural links leading to destination websites. He also said that, unfortunately, he has seen proof of negative SEO rearing its ugly head during Penguin 2.1.


“Ive had several companies reach out to me that are claiming negative SEO,” Gabe said. “And after looking at the situation, I have to agree with them. And worse, I saw an entire business category (in a geo area) get hit with spammy links. That seemed very suspicious. All the business owners (who are competitors) were all blindsided.”


Tips and Recovery Recommendations


It’s business as usual on how to deal with cleaning up your site for the next visit from Penguin, Gabe said. That means downloading and analyzing the links, creating a plan of attack to remove and disavow as needed, and if you have to, remove pages (unless they’re important).


Here are Gabe’s top five recommendations on what to do if you’ve been hit by Penguin 2.1:


  • Understand that Penguin heavily targets unnatural links. Your new content and social activity won’t trigger a recovery.
  • Thoroughly analyze your link profile, while keeping a keen eye on exact match and rich anchor text. That’s what Penguin targets.
  • Remove those links if you can, and disavow the remaining links. And use the domain operator in the disavow file when the domain is low-quality. Don’t try and target specific URLs on a spammy domain, when you can nuke the entire domain.
  • Make sure more unnatural links arent being added as time goes on. Gabe said he’s had a number of business owners think they cleaned up their situation, only to get hit harder during Penguin 2.1. After checking their link profiles, you can clearly see more spammy links were added during the spring, summer, and fall. This is what got them hit by Penguin 2.1.
  • Move fast and be aggressive. Gabe said he has seen Penguin recoveries during Panda updates, so there is a possibility of recovery prior to the next official Penguin update.

What To Watch Out For When Choosing A Search Engine Optimization Company

What To Watch Out For When Choosing A Search Engine Optimization Company

search engine optimization

When it comes to search engine optimization, some people like to get their hands dirty. Others like to handle parts of the task that they know and are comfortable with while leaving the bits and pieces they are unsure about to people who know what they are doing.


Before you start looking for a search engine optimization company sit down and consider your situation. What goals do you have for your website? What are your priorities? How much can you afford to spend? Remember that you pay for quality. The lowest price isn’t always the best deal. However, the company you choose should be affordable and within your budget.


When it is time to submit your web-based business to a search engine there  are search engine optimization companies who, for a fee, will be happy to optimize the websites for you if you do not feel comfortable doing it yourself.


Search engine optimization is the art and science of making a website attractive to search engines. If you don’t know where to find a reputable search engine optimization company try looking in search engine optimization forums, references or articles on reputable websites, ask friends for recommendations, ask other webmasters if they used anyone to optimize their sites and if they did ask which company they used and if the experience was pleasant.

Search Engine Optimization and Scams


The first thing you have to watch out for when you’re selecting a company to handle your search engine optimization is scams. Avoid any search engine optimization companies that are listed in the black hat directory. Black hat search engine optimization is not really optimizing but really just all about spamming other websites and using methods that are not ‘search engine friendly’.  Also avoid any company who guarantees a ranking before they even look at your site. Make sure the company you are considering is actually going to do something besides add doorway pages and meta tags.

Search Engine Optimization and Spamdexing


Spamdexing is using methods that manipulate the relevancy or prominence of resources indexed by a search engine, usually in a manner that is inconsistent with the purpose of the indexing system. A lot of times spamdexing is done by stuffing a website full of keywords. Web crawlers (the programs search engines use to rank websites) read the web sites. They read lots of the same keyword and assume that the site is content rich. Based on the web crawler’s findings, the website is given a high rank. A lot of the time the keywords are stuck at the bottom of the document where the internet user can’t see them. Keyword stuffing is considered content spam. Most search engines penalize websites that are caught spamdexing.


The other common type of spamdexing is link spam. Link spam is spamdexing that takes advantage of link ranking algorithms causing search engines to give the guilty website a higher ranking. Link farms, hidden links, Sybil attack, wiki spam, spam blogs (also referred to as splogs), page hijacking, buying expired domains, and referrer log spamming are forms of link spam.

The Final Word On Choosing A Search Engine Optimization Company


It doesn’t matter if you are a small company with a simple website or a large company with a very extensive and complicated website. If any search engine optimization company says to you that they can get your site to the top of Google and the other search engines in a short period of time, avoid them like the plague. Search engine optimization is time consuming and should be a gradual process and it  should not be taken lightly as there could be disastrous results. Always ask what methods the company will use and what time frame they are looking at to see some results in the rankings. If they give you a time-frame of a matter of a few short weeks for example, you can be sure they are using methods that are probably considered black hat (using bad seo practices)or at the very least, the results wont ‘stick’ for very long in the rankings. In the right hands, search engine optimization can bring fantastic benefits to your website, but in the wrong hands, it can be the death of your website in a very short period of time.


Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics