May 30, 2024

Since Google and other search engines were born, a search has been underway to develop an algorithm that perfects the art of ranking the most relevant, user-friendly, and useful content at the top of search engines.

It’s fair to say Google has probably come the closest of all search engines to mastering this algorithm, but the difficulty comes in the speed at which the Internet moves.

All of us who write, design, or develop for the Internet have to constantly keep up to stay ‘current’ and to keep up with the pace of change, and that is no exception for Google. As new Web development technologies arise, as new ways of trying to draw in visitors and potentially find loopholes in search engine algorithms are born, so update to Google’s manual review processes and automated algorithms.

It is these updates that can penalize our websites with a drop in rankings or removal from Google altogether. Many case studies across the Web discuss specific cases of large brands (and smaller brands, too) receiving a Google penalty. Still, our core focus for this article is to protect your blog from receiving a Google penalty in the first instance to avoid your blog becoming one of the many case studies available.

Manual Penalties

Manual penalties are applied to the blog’s page as well as other pages or even your entire site following a Google employee who has reviewed your website. The employee might have identified certain areas that they believe are detrimental to the users who visit your site or determined that your blog does not provide the best user experience for visitors coming from Google. The most obvious signs that could trigger intervention from Google include a compromised blog and too many spam-related links in your blog’s comments or text that is hidden on your site.

Google is extremely transparent about manual penalties. They go beyond providing an account to the owner of the website for each manual step the employee performed, as well as a rationale for the reason that the decision was made. It is available inside the manual action report for each of your sites that are added to the Google Search Console.

Algorithmic Penalties

It is known that the Panda, as well as Penguin updates, are well-known all over the search engine optimization world as the main reason behind Google penalties.

Panda Updates

The Panda update is designed to penalize sites that do not offer pertinent, high-quality content for its customers. It was first announced in February 2011. An update to this Panda algorithm is generally released every month.

Google did not announce the date of this update; however, only when an important change to the algorithm is announced does Google now make the announcement. Similar to all kinds of penalties, we’ll discuss methods to prevent them within this post.

Penguin Updates

While Panda is focused on the content you post on the blog itself, Penguin is concentrated on the links that come into your blog. At the beginning of Google, PageRank (i.e., how many links you had as well as the trustworthiness (PageRank) of the links) was what mattered.

As time passed, it became apparent that there was too much emphasis in PageRank’s algorithm PageRank algorithm on the number of linked inbound links instead of the quality of the hyperlinks.

In the end, it’s Penguin’s job to concentrate on the credibility of links, the credibility of inbound links, and, consequently, the credibility of the blog that it is linking to. For instance, a link from a piece about fishing from the .gov or .edu domain name to a blog about fishing will be much more valuable than a link from an article on online dating with the .info website name, the identical fishing blog.

How Do I Protect My Site Against Google Penalties?

There are many methods to ensure that you keep (and even increase) your Google search engine ranking. Here, we will discuss a few strategies to make sure that Google is confident in you to become an authoritative website and, lastly, provide a great user experience for your customers.

Improve Your Guest Posting Links

Guest posting on high-authority large traffic-volume websites has become a standard method to gain a following for your blog. If it is not done properly, it could be an ideal breeding ground for Google penalty.

Take note of how, in the one example, Dan has a very clear author bio. It’s not a natural link. He received the link to his site in return for his guest post.

Although this might seem reasonable to me and you, Google, this isn’t explicit and impartial advice from ProBlogger and is more of the return of a favor.

In the second instance, however, the link to the author’s website is more natural. It is included in an article’s body guest’s contribution and is a lot more like a genuine, recommended link provided by ProBlogger. This is less likely to be viewed as negative by Google.

Avoid Low Quality and Irrelavant Sources for Inbound Links

As we discussed earlier in this post, Google’s primary focus isn’t on the quantity of links it provides but on the quality and importance of the source connecting to you.

MicrositeMasters conducted some great research, which reveals the percentage of websites penalized under the Penguin update based on the number of inbound links from websites that are in the same field.

50% of websites with no pertinent inbound hyperlinks (i.e., links that were not in the same category) were penalized.

A massive jump in traffic then happens for sites with 10% of their links from the same area since only 12 percent of these sites were penalized. The numbers continue to fall from there, and only small percentages of websites get penalized by Penguin in the event that 90 percent of their inbound links come from sites that are in the same field.

Beware of links on websites that aren’t connected to yours. Also, beware of links from sources with too many external links since these look to Google as spam and are devalued hyperlinks.

Stay Clear of Deceptive On-Page Tactics

The use of deceitful on-page techniques was an early method for black-hat SEOs to get around Google and other search engines.

Through actions such as deliberately concealing text from human readers (but still keeping the text on the page in order for engines index) or automatically redirecting users to separate pages that they clicked when they search and deliberately breaking the browser back button so that visitors cannot press the ‘back’ button and go away from the website in the process, you’re at risk of receiving a fine from Google (and certainly for other engines as well).

In addition, you’re delivering a bad user experience to your website users.

Beware of these fraudulent tactics and concentrate on providing a great user experience that is a friendly, helpful, and thorough understanding for your site users.

Excessive On-Page Adverts

Bloggers, we are assured that we will show ads on our websites. It’s among the many sources of revenue we make use of. But a lot of use for advertisements can lead to poor experiences for visitors. This means that it is possible to be punished by Google.

Eliminate Outbound Spam Links

The openness of our blog posts to comments could, if they are not maintained regularly, cause our blog posts to become a source of spam hyperlinks. Bloggers are at risk when we get too comfortable and stop commenting and moderating.

It is recommended always to moderate new commenters and to conduct an ongoing review of all comments in order to ensure there aren’t any posts that link to spam websites.

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