If you are a website owner or an SEO team member engaged in improving the rank of your website in the search engines, then you would definitely be concerned about protecting your website from getting penalized by Google. Due to the Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird updates, many sites resulted into loss by getting penalized.
In order to prevent such mishappening, then first of all, you must know the root cause that why it happens. Then, you must know the actions, if something has already happened to your site. At last, you must know how to ensure that your website is Google-friendly.
What Makes Google to Penalize a Site
The following reasons are generally responsible for such actions:
1. Poor Quality Content
This encompasses companies that have no original content or very little content or a content that is unintelligible. Hence, if you are planning to outsource professional Website Content Writing Services, then make it a point that you get authentic content devoid of any errors. An example of low quality content can be the one that publishes articles run through spinning software.
2. Unnatural and Inorganic Links
It is very important to understand from Google’s perspective that if any link appears to be unnatural, i.e. not created for the benefit of readers, then it may urge Google to penalize your site. The links should be well distributed across your website.
3. Malware or Hacking
Probably, this might be not your mistake. But, if your website contains malware or has been hacked, then it is considered to be unsafe for the visitors. Likewise, if your website content or post contains spammy comments, then it can be a red flag.
4. Excessive Keywords
Keyword stuffing can make your website to get penalized quickly. Keywords must be used; but they should be used in a natural manner. Repeated anchor texts are also considered as unnatural. So, anchor texts must differ by utilizing different keywords.
Indications That the Website Has Been Penalized
One must look at the following indications, to find that the website has been penalized or not:
1. Abrupt Drop in Website Rank
If your website ranking has suddenly dropped, then it is serious matter of concern. Chances are that your site might have been the target of Google penalty. Besides, this there is no other major reason to worry.
2. Webmaster Tools
Checking into Google Webmaster Tools can help you identify if your site was penalized. Clicking on Manual Actions and Search Traffic, you will identify the areas where you were lacking.
3. Tandem with Google Updates
Keep tandem with the Google updates and track the rankings for different keywords across the web. This will help you to know if your ranking has dropped or not.
Actions to Take if Site is Penalized
In case, you discover that your site has been penalized, you must keep abreast with the following:
1. Security Measures
You must regularly check certain problems on your site, such as viruses, malware and spam, as they can make your website rate low with the search engines. There are a number of plugins that may help to keep your website secure, if you use WordPress.
2. Remove Low Quality Content
If your website consists of duplicate or low quality content, then it is advisable to remove or upgrade it. The pages that do not contain any helpful information must be definitely edited or removed for sure.
3. Remove Links Associated To Spammy Sites
It is always advised to remove the links that are related to spammy sites such as online pharmacies, porn sites, online casinos, etc. As per a global SEO Link Building Company, a link audit may help the website owners to identify the problematic links. Once you recognize those links that are supposed to be removed, then you must contact the sites and instantly ask them to remove the links.
4. Disavow Links Tool
It is advisable to use this resource (created by Google) precisely in order to remove the problematic links and save the helpful ones. For this, it is necessary to conduct a link audit and get the list of all the links to your website. You can then carry further, the removal of unwanted links.
5. Reconsideration Request
Send a reconsideration request, if you are 100% sure everything that was the reason for penalty, you have already taken care of. With Google Webmaster Tools, you can reach this.
Keep Monitoring Your Site
Your website can attain a good ranking, if you regularly monitor your website. Identifying the flaws and lacking areas, you can protect your website from getting penalized by Google. Make necessary changes and ensure that the same mistakes are not repeated again in the future.