As usual, Google’s latest announcement has webmasters and SEO specialists buzzing. Instead of an update though, this time it came in the form of a keynote address by Google’s own Matt Cutts. The idea was to help explain and clear up any misunderstandings about the disavow tool; but it seems to have had the opposite effect of causing even more confusion and a small amount of panic. Over the last few years, Google became a little more stringent in the use of their algorithm and have begun taking into account links that are poor quality or paid when determining SERP rankings. They have begun notifying owners of sites about inbound links that are suspicious and this has caused webmasters to pay attention and try to clean up their link profiles as much as possible. Sometimes these are simply very old profiles that no one was paying much attention to; and some of them were put into place by an SEO company that worked the site before. As Google has gotten better at detecting links of poor quality, some negative SEOcampaigns occurred. This is an unethical technique which is used by competitors who will buy links and point them at sites that they want to rank lower than themselves. This leaves innocent webmasters in a bind even if they find out what did actually occur. Google created the disavow option for situations like these. (more…)
Joomla and WordPress are both very popular content management systems. The primary difference between the two is that WordPress is a blog and Joomla is a portal – or a community type set up. They can tend to overlap each other in several different areas. Plus they can each be extended by the use of various plugins. Both of these platforms are free and many web hosting providers now have them in their tools section so that they are easily implemented on a web site. Which one is better? That is something each has to decide on their own; but here are a few comparisons to help sort through the information.
File Name Formatting/ URL
WordPress and Joomla can both be setup to optimize URLs without using a plug-in. WordPress organizes content through the use of Permalinks while Joomla allows users to create sections or categories to help with organization. These section names or category names are then used in the URL. When using Joomla, it can be difficult to create a file path unless the page appears in a subdirectory. (more…)
Digg was a social bookmarking site that was an online community through which users could share content. Once the content was shared, then users could vote on it. When content was “voted” on it gained better positioning and this could lead to more views and shares. Users could find an interesting story online and then submit it online. Others could then “Digg” the story, or give it a thumbs up.
Out with the Old
The original Digg will always be sort of sentimental since it was really one of the first big Web 2.0 social media successes. But recently it was sold to Betaworks who has completely redone the site and relaunched it. The question is whether these changes can ever make it into a top social site again or not. It’s missing some of the elements that were huge pluses for many users. (more…)
Google’s latest update was released on April 24th. The “Penguin Update” has some SEOs and webmasters on edge and there are some site owners that report having lost substantial traffic as well as revenue due to the “web spam update.” The goal seems to be to penalize pages or sites that have been trying to spam Google. The update is designed to punish sites which use some black hat methods for website optimization. While this update is crucial to web site optimizationit does not seem to have nearly as widespread of a negative effect as the previous one. Google has officially announced that the Penguin update only impacted about 3% of the English queries where the Panda 1.0 Update affected somewhere around 12%. Of course this is very difficult to calculate since the rankings are in a constant state of change. However, it does seem that Penguin’s impact is both substantial and immediate.
Link Building Practices
It seems that one of the most affected by the Penguin Update are sites which abuse link building strategies as part of their website optimization campaign. Most of the sites which were penalized with this particular update used tactics like exact match anchor text. Preliminary research indicates that the sites that got hit the hardest used some sort of “money” keyword in the anchor text for more than 60% of the incoming links. If less than half of your incoming links had some sort of “money” keywords in the anchor text they were not generally affected by the update.
This does not mean that you need to go in and start cutting away all your back-links. The problem with just randomly cutting away links may hurt you more than you realize. If you have links that are not causing any problems and you cut them the site rankings could drop even more. What you do want to cut are links that are obviously paid links. You will also want to get rid of links that were recently delisted by Google. Footer links and any other links site wide with exact match anchor text should also be removed.
What if I was Affected?
One way to find out if your site was affected by the Penguin Update is to check your traffic from just before April 24. If you saw a sharp drop in your site’s traffic on April 24 it is likely that you were hit by Penguin. One thing is for sure – Google has made it obvious that you do not need to contact them for a reassessment. They stated that if your site was affected it will have to recover naturally. You will have to take a good look at your sites. Clean up any spam that you know has occurred and clean up any bad links that you are aware of. Penguin is only targeting spam – get rid of any links you know are spam.
It is certainly time to get rid of all your paid link building campaigns. Even though you may not have been hit by Penguin it is still included in the overall algorithm Google is using and it’s only a matter of time. Use all white hat link building strategies. Also make sure that your anchor links do not match exactly. If you want your site to rank high for “purple bananas” and you use it in the anchor text site-wide Penguin will penalize the site. Keep the anchor text varied.
Content is Still King
Spend your efforts on providing fresh, quality content on the site. Update it regularly with fresh content and use all your resources such as updating the associated blog(s) daily if reasonable; but at least 2 to 3 times per week. Write how-to guides and build landing pages or include product reviews.
The Role of Social Media
A good social media strategy can be used to help keep the site active. Through content sharing on various social media platforms the links you need can be generated naturally. Make use of the most popular social media sites by joining a social bookmarking community or Facebook. Include links in tweets which can be used for genuine regular updates and also help inform users of what’s going on with the business site.
This term can wreak havoc in the SEO’s mind! With each Google update there can be ripples of fear that go out across the SEO world and everyone takes a deep breath and readjusts to see what needs to be changed. Just take a step back so that you can look at the big picture. Check your content to see if it serves a purpose. Make sure your anchor text matches the targeted intent and make sure that each of your pages is necessary. Go for generic and natural link building strategies and even sites that have been hit unfairly will soon start ranking again.
RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and is a format that is used for syndication of web content. It is just one of the many ways that can be used to spread various types of web related news such as when a new post is made on a blog. Many sites offer users the ability to subscribe to an RSS feed from their site. Once they subscribe they can view feeds in various readers such as Bloglines or Google Reader. Other programs such as Microsoft Outlook can also support RSS feeds. Feeds can also be displayed on a browser home page. An RSS feed can be a very effective way to spread pertinent information to an online audience and it can be a great SEO tool. Although RSS feeds are typical useful when it comes to displaying blog content, [since feeds make it easy for users to subscribe to a blog and receive notification when a new blog post is posted] it is possible to create a feed for any page and from an SEO perspective it is advisable that every site has an RSS feed.
Optimizing RSS Feeds
There are a couple of things that can be done to optimize and RSS feed. In premise it is similar to website optimization. Make sure that the feed’s description and channel title contain relevant keywords. Every feed item should have a unique title as well as its own description. The title should be relevant as well as enticing to readers. A feed’s description is usually a summary or introduction to the main content. When creating a feed, provide some extra information on an HTML site and invite readers to click through to receive all the information. Provide enough information that will encourage readers who are interested to click on the link.
There are so many possibilities for using RSS feeds in successful SEO campaigns. It is all about getting your business’ important information into the hands of clients. RSS feeds when optimized can generate a substantial amount of traffic to blogs or sites which contain business information. Even though RSS feeds are a tool to generate traffic, remember that you are trying to reach a human audience. This simply means that you want to ensure that the feeds are offering them legitimate information; unless they are genuinely interested in your content it will not be a productive venture. One way to ensure that readers can receive the types of information that they are interested in is to invite users to subscribe to just the feeds that they find interesting. Do not focus so heavily into keywords that you forget about your human audience. You can generate several feeds that are categorized by different topics. This allows readers to choose to receive the topics that are of interest to them. This may sound like it is too divided, but it can actually help increase relevant traffic and provide generic links to the site when readers are clicking through because they are genuinely interested in the content. Most readers will make a decision on whether or not to click on a link based on a quick scan of the headline. Be sure that your headline and description contain enough information to get their attention which will encourage them to take action and click through.
Social Networks and RSS Feeds
RSS feeds can be fed directly to various social networks. Simple tools such as twitterfeed or dlvr.it will publish the newest RSS items directly onto social media accounts. The headline for your feed is a very important feature here as some social networks have limited space and sites like Twitter will only display the link and the headline. Headlines must be relevant and succinct to boost traffic.
Displaying RSS Feeds
Spiders do crawl RSS feeds. Most of the time it is a good idea to include RSS feeds as part of the web design. Make sure that you use HTML, ASP or PHP so that search engines will spider the feed’s content that is displayed. If you are using a template for displaying feeds, it is important to use header tags. Search engines will give header tags more weight when crawling and indexing a site.
When creating an RSS feed it is very important to include entire URLs to the sites you want it to be linked back to. This is your ticket to getting backlinks. This will also ensure that if your RSS feed is shared across social media platforms, email or other means that the link will be included and provide a way for the link to be spread across the web.
Getting links to your website [backlinks] is an essential part of every SEO campaign and can be one of the more difficult things as it is very time consuming, link building involves writing quality content, developing connections with other webmasters in your field and manually contacting bloggers… Another link building strategy consists of building low quality links through directories, social bookmarking sites… The problem with these links is that they are very low quality, often No Follow (this means Google doesn’t see them) and nowadays Google may even penalize you for such links. Another problem is that many social bookmarking sites are not fully indexed by Google and it may take months for the Google bots to crawl the site and find your link/s, often they never crawl these sites. One solution is to use quality social bookmarking sites and communities that allow you to post do follow links and that Google respects, this is where we come in; The Social Bookmarking community powered by NetLZ is a leading social bookmarking site that allows you to post social bookmarks to your site, blog articles, Squidoo lenses, and any other pages that you have. The Social Bookmarking Community is respected by Google and is crawled on a daily basis, and all of the links are Do follow and count! We invite you to join the Social Bookmarking Community today!
Social Bookmark Optimization on The Social Bookmarking Community
When it comes to getting the most out of every bookmark that you post on the social bookmarking community there are a few simple tricks that we recommend, firstly, make sure to pick a good title, this title should be descriptive and contain a keyword that you are trying to optimize for, next make sure to write a good description, this should be around 160-200 characters and should be unique, next choose 2-3 tags, tags are very important as they will help to build internal links to your bookmark, lastly add an image! Google likes images and adding an image will help your page get indexed faster, also do not forget to pick the most relevant category. Once your bookmark is posted we also recommend that you build links to the bookmark page, this will help to give that bookmark more weight and will increase the value of that link in Google’s eyes.
When it comes to getting the most out of the social bookmarking community we recommend that you become an active member, make sure to vote on other bookmarks and to post comments, this will make you more visible and will encourage others to vote on your bookmarks, the more positive votes you have the more valuable your link will be.
Ask any SEO specialist how important links are to a successful SEO campaign and they can tell you that links are certainly one of the important strategies to increased search engine result rankings. Recently, Google sent out an update that sent ripples across the entire SEO community. How will the Google update affect the types of link building strategies that we use? Or will it affect them at all? It is certainly worth taking a look at and double checking to ensure your site(s) are not unduly penalized.
According to the official Google Search blog, many times links are used to help determine a topic of a linked page. The way Google evaluates these links is going to be different. They say that sometimes they “re-architect or turn off” certain parts of their scoring methods to help the system be easily maintained and clean. And that is about all that anybody is getting Google to say about the matter.
What many are discovering is that if the links provided to a site are all obtained by white hat methods there should be no penalty. It appears as though Google simply wants to crack down on sites that build back links through “unnatural” or “artificial” means. Those who are attempting to use artificial links to affect their Page Rank have experienced penalties by Google. Some webmasters have not received any notice before they noticed a sudden drop in the SERPs. The trouble seems to lie mostly with those who are engaging in buying or selling links and disregarding whether or not these are relevant or quality links. This is an obvious violation of Google’s Panda Update and can certainly affect a site’s ranking. There have also been some concern on the part of business owners who have hired SEO specialists. They are caught off-guard by the penalty and are unsure what to do to remedy the situation.
What’s Not a Violation?
It is important to note that all paid links are not in violation of these guidelines. It is really just part of the web’s economy, when the purpose is simply advertising and not trying to manipulate search results in any way. However, it is very important to note when links are purchased for advertising. One example of this is by redirecting links to a page that is not indexed by bots; such as .txt files. And another way to avoid the penalty is to add an “rel=’nofollow’” attribute to the tag <a>.
Google tries to make sure that it only penalizes sites that are purchasing links simply to manipulate the results. It will be looking for sites that engage in a huge amount of link exchanges or links that pass Page Rank. However, there are sites with many links that have been penalized in the rankings without cause. It is worth the time invested to make sure that natural links look more natural to the bots as well. For instance, if you have a link from a blog that is linked to your site alone, that looks unnatural. But a link from a blog that is linked to many different sites has a more natural look. A site that has a link from a professional organization will look natural as will a link to a relevant site. Large amounts of links from spam directories, loads of links from irrelevant sites or links from a “links” page will all send up some red flags to Google.
Impact on SEO
It is very possible that the recent changes in Google will directly affect SEO strategies. The Unnatural Link update is different from other updates because it is penalizing sites based solely on the link building strategies that have been used. For many it will mean no changes; for others it can be a clean-up headache. Based on the data available there are some observations that can be made about these penalties. If you get a message about unnatural links it is very likely that the site will be penalized within about 3 week’s time. These penalties seem to draw a correlation between the “unnatural links” and any anchor text that is used. Because the way that Google views anchor text has changed sites that contain large amounts of keyword anchor text are at risk.
For those who use commercial link building products, it is very likely that it will be or already is being targeted by Google. Some of the best known sites like Build My Rank are being de-indexed. Several SEO specialists have stated that they have been using their own blog networks for link building strategies. And some of them are aware that they have already been de-indexed. Sidebar links are going to send up a huge red flag so they should be removed. Links to any toxic sites should also be removed.
What to Do
It is really not that easy to clean up a site that has been penalized by Google’s updates. The first attempt should be to contact the link builders first and ask that the links be removed. If this is unsuccessful you can manually email the sites and ask that the links be removed. This can take a very long time and it will only work if a site has a real human who is managing the site and answering emails. This means that low quality sites will have no real means of contacting them so you cannot remove the link. This is why it is becoming very important to the SEO community to carefully guard link building campaigns and strategies. Google has yet to come up with a real way of dealing with this problem. However, you can link to Google Docs and state that you have asked for a link to be removed but have no means of contact and so you cannot do anything about it.
These changes are certainly having an impact on SEO agencies. This is especially true for those who rely on link building strategies for site rankings. On a good note, sites that are using spam methods to build links used to rank for about a year before they were detected; now they only last about 3 months at most. But for those who legitimately desire to build a lint term business it is necessary to develop a strategy that will deliver long term results.
To run a smart SEO campaign it will involve about 5 areas. First, continue to produce quality and relevant content for the users of the site. Link building strategies should be natural through the use of content where other sites naturally link back to their sites. Stay on Google’s good side by providing quality content and a site that is engaging for visitors. Don’t over optimize. Use a well-balanced approach to develop a solid SEO campaign.
Link-building is a huge part of any successful SEO campaign. It works like this: if a wider variety of sites link to your site, Google rewards your site by placing you higher in search rankings. Especially if these links contain valuable anchor text related to your site. Other search engines operate in a similar fashion, but Google is the biggest player, and so most of my efforts are focused on ranking higher in Google search results pages.
Knowing this, it’s easy to go overboard when building links, and resort to tactics that will end up doing more harm than good, or simply waste your time. Buying links, using Comment Luv and Keyword Luv enabled blogs to build links in blog comments, and placing links in forum signatures are all examples of easy way to build links that do very little to actually improve your rankings. However, this shouldn’t suggest that you stop building links altogether. Instead you should concentrate on building higher quality links.
How Google Calculates Link Value
Building links on high domain authority or page rank sites is key to improving your SERP rankings. However, Google doesn’t just look at the anchor text of a link when calculating how it will affect the rankings of the site it links to. Google takes a number of things into account when calculating link value: topical value of the content surrounding the link, reputation of the site the content is posted on, and the degree of change in links back to your own site. By surrounding a link with relevant keywords and body copy, you’re telling Google that the link is related to those terms. Google uses a value called Page Rank to determine how reputable a site is. The age of a site, the number of inbound versus outbound links, and social media signals such as Facebook Likes and Tweets, are part of Google’s Page Rank calculation. The degree of change in your links is a measure of how quickly links are built. If Google sees a huge increase from one week to the next, this raises a flag that inappropriate link-building techniques may be used.
Context is important for building valuable links. It’s important to build links on sites that are related or similar to your site, both for search engines and human visitors. Your time is better spent building a link on a PR5 site that’s related to your own site than building a link on a higher ranked site that is completely unrelated. The best way to rank better in Google searches is to build links where humans will actually click through to your own site.
Relevant Links Bring Better Traffic
Focusing on building relevant links will also result in more direct traffic. People are more likely to click on a link if it’s placed in a related website, blog post or forum. Your goal isn’t just higher traffic—it’s higher conversions. It doesn’t matter if you consider a version to be a successful sale from your e-commerce store, or a new subscription to your SaaS application, or a new regular reader of your blog. Users who find your site through a link on a related website are far more likelier to convert than users who arrive at your site through a link built in a totally unrelated area. Good SEO is about higher conversions, not just higher traffic, and link placement in valuable forums, blog posts and other areas is the best way to build links that will bring visitors ready to convert.
How to Find Areas for Building Relevant Links
My favorite tool for finding good places to build links is Google Alerts. It’s easy to populate a list of key words and phrases you want to monitor, and set how you want to be notified of relevant posts. You can choose the kind of posts you want to be alerted to, and how often you want to see these alerts. I like to use “discussions” to find relevant forum and blog posts for placing links. Most of the referral traffic I see on my websites comes from relevant links. Finding people who have a problem that one of my company’s products will solve takes more time than simply blasting links all over the internet, but with a focused link-building strategy, we see more interested visitors who are ready to convert.
This guest post was written by Tyler Moore
Tyler Moore works at Expected Behavior, a web development firm based in Indianapolis. Expected Behavior has built a product called DocRaptor, a web application used to generate PDF files from pure HTML. DocRaptor handles CSS styling better than comparable programs, and uses a simple HTTP POST request to convert HTML to PDF.
This blog post was initially meant to be a Squidoo lens, but it seems that Squidoo no longer allows this topic to be published as a lens; given that I believe this topic to be a very important one to SEO I decided to publish it as a blog post, therefore the structure of this post may be different from other posts you’ll find on this blog. This page will contain a total of 6 articles on the topic of social bookmarks and link building; here we will explore these topics in some depth. I hope that you find this information to be useful.
Social Media Marketing 101
Social Media Marketing
The web 2.0 universe is designed to be more than just an information highway. Many younger people who use the internet today do not even remember when it was purely a source to gain information. To the new generation it has always been viewed as a form of social media where everyone can get involved, everyone can add input. This is actually the ideal opportunity for the world of web marketing in New Jersey. Social media simply makes use of this web 2.0 technology that is relying on the interaction and input of internet users. Ideally, prospective and faithful customers are marketing your product or business for you.
Examples of Social Media
In its most basic state social networking or social media is pretty much any online activity where people are talking or interacting with one another in some fashion. Some of the most popular social sites are Twitter and Facebook. These can be vital parts of an SEO campaign or a web marketing campaign. These and many other types of social sites can aid in various link building strategies. However, there are many different types of social sites like Squidoo and Digg. There are many social bookmarking communities as well as blogs; each of which can be very useful in link building campaigns.
Why Do Social Media?
There are several ways social media can be beneficial for an SEO campaign in Essex County. Other than the obvious benefits for website optimization, social sites can also help build an effective way to communicate with your customers and a way to receive valuable feedback. It can be useful when building the awareness of your brand. It can also be a way of getting valuable information into the hands of your customers. The statistics show that 88% of Americans who are 29 and under are online in some capacity while up to 75% of all Americans go online regularly. This makes social media a great platform for a web marketing campaign.
All of us have shared a link with a friend at some time or another. We have come across a website or blog that we found to be very interesting, and since we thought the information was useful or worth sharing we sent the link to others that we thought would also be interested. Social bookmarking is similar in essence, in that it is sharing a site with a friend. However, social bookmarks are saved online– they are saved to the web. This makes them very easy to share with friends and the online community.
Basically, you can create a profile in a social bookmarking community and then “bookmark” pages or content that you find interesting. This makes it easy to find your own bookmarks from any computer, and also to share them with others who may have the same interests. To help others find a bookmarked page, users store them and “tag” them with descriptive words or phrases. This makes them easy to locate for people and search engines.
Social bookmarking can provide many valuable back links to websites. The search engines will see these as relevant links to a site which makes them a vital part of a link building and SEO campaign.
Social Bookmarking Best Practices
Bookmarking Best Practices
Social bookmarks can be a valuable part of a successful SEO campaign in New Jersey. Actively participating in a social bookmarking community can be essential when employing link building strategies for a site. These online bookmarks are actually a very good and legitimate way to begin building valuable links back to your page or site. Search engines see these as relevant and valuable inbound links which makes them a very valuable part of SEO best practices in New Jersey.
Just like all other SEO strategies there are best practices that help make social bookmarks effective. Here are a few best practices:
Always tag bookmarks – this is how people and search engines find them
Don’t add all of your bookmarks in a day – spread them out over time
Add bookmarks yourself as automated software will get you banned from some sites
Bookmark your top pages, blog posts or topics to generate more incoming traffic from links
Participate in the social bookmarking community – don’t simply add your own links
These are just a few best practices to help with link building strategies. If done in good taste, social bookmarks can be a very beneficial part of a link building campaign.
Social Bookmarking Communities
The web 2.0 changed the way the internet was used, and how it affects our lives. It is still a useful resource for information but it now provides a platform for social media. There are many social marketing strategies that can be used; one of them is social bookmarking communities.
We have probably all used a bookmark on our personal computer so that we could return to a site that we found useful or interesting. Social bookmarking sites allow users to basically do this same action, only the link is shared online not just saved to the computer. Sharing these in an online community means that these links are available for those who share this interest. Users browse the site looking for items of interest. When they find a site or a page that they feel is interesting and merits sharing they can tag it and share it on their page in the community.
Once you bookmark a page of interest you will add tags to it. These are words or short phrases that will be used by others who are looking for such information. When they find the tag on the community they can then click the link to go to the page and read the entire article or blog; or just peruse the site themselves. It is basically a social community for sharing like interests through tagging or bookmarking various sites.
What distinguishes social bookmarking communities from other social bookmarking sites is that the community bookmarking sites allow users to make friends and communicate with other members; non community social bookmarking sites are simply a place to post a link to a page.
Social Bookmarking Strategies
Using social bookmarks can be an essential element in an SEO campaign in New Jersey. Online bookmarkscan provide valuable back links which the search engines will deem as relevant. Social bookmarking can be invaluable to a link building campaign if they are used appropriately.
Obviously you will want to be active in social bookmarking communities by adding links to sites, pages or information that is relevant. When you add a bookmark always add tags, this is a strategy that cannot be ignored; it is essential to tag the bookmark so that others can find the link to the information you are sharing with the community. The links provided are seen as relevant by search engines which make social bookmarks an important part of a link building campaign.
When you update your site or blog it should be submitted to your social bookmarking community. This accomplishes two things. For one it keeps your account in the community active and provides links back to your site. This New Jersey web marketing strategy will help keep members of your online community engaged and aware of various changes. The most effective way to do this is to add the social bookmark the same day you make the changes to the content on your site, blog or page.
Does Social Bookmarking Work?
Social Bookmarking Works
If social bookmarks are done correctly they can be very productive for increasing traffic to a site. It can be an essential part of an SEO campaign. It can be especially beneficial and productive for those targeting younger audiences. Using social bookmarks can be one of the fastest ways of getting your site to be indexed by search engines. Since these links are seen as relevant and valuable, when part of a link building strategy they can help increase the site’s ranking in search engine result pages which is the ultimate goal of an SEO campaign.
Social bookmarking uses the web 2.0 platform and allows users to search, organize, store and manage various bookmarked pages. These are tagged so that they can be found by people and search engines later. When someone finds your site through a bookmark or other social site they can bookmark it as containing interesting or useful information. This is why it is very important to include social bookmarking buttons on blogs or sites. This can be a very effective part of an SEO strategy in New Jersey. The more people who share your pages the more visible it will be to others and to search engines alike.
Link Building Tips
Link building strategies are an integral part of an effective SEO campaign, SEO best practices can take many different forms with the outcome being higher rankings in search engine results pages and increased site visitors. Link building strategies are just one part of the campaign, but it is an important part and there are several ways to make it effective.
Make it easy for others to share your site on various web 2.0 social media platforms by putting share buttons right on your site, blog or page. These will create a very quick and relevant link back to your site from another online source. These help to make your site more visible and are also seen as relevant and valuable back links by search engine crawlers. These can easily be included in the web design.
Join various social websites. This can include Facebook, Twitter, Squidoo and various social bookmarking sites. These can all provide platforms from which to share links to your site. Always read the TOS to make sure that you stay within the site’s guidelines for sharing this type of information.
Avoid low quality links. If you get a lot of links but they are not seen as relevant by the search engines your site can actually get penalized by search engines so make sure the links you have coming in are pertinent and related to the site in some way. So if you choose to use social bookmarking as part of your link building strategy make sure that you become active on each social bookmarking site that you use and make sure that you also get other links from sites/blogs, not just from social bookmarks.
There is still a lot of controversy over what exactly constitutes a Google penalty. In its most basic state if a site is seen by the Google search algorithm to be keyword stuffing or any form of shady SEO practices then the penalty is that the site is dropped down in the rankings. There are three main types of Google penalties: -30 penalty, -950 penalty and index exclusion. Basically the site will be penalized in the search engine rankings depending on the nature of the infraction. Once it is attended to the penalty will be removed, although it may take 6-12 months for Google to remove a penalty and even then it may take longer for the site to regain its original position.
Some schools of thought say that when too many links occur inside a short time span Google will slap a penalty on the site. For instance if you start a site and get about 15 to 20 new links a day and then all of a sudden get 1000 in one day it will look like the links were not legitimately acquired and Google will hit the site with a penalty. Over some time, it will go away. But to avoid getting the penalty do not use link building software. Instead, work on building your link strategies slowly.
The index exclusion penalty is a total ban from search engine result pages. This Google penalty can seriously harm a site. This type of penalty usually occurs when there is a very serious violation of Google’s quality guidelines. Usually there is some sort of black hat method being practiced such as doorway pages or cloaking. If your site is hit with this penalty it is likely that it will be removed entirely from Google search results and it may be very difficult and timely to regain your rankings.
To avoid the -30 and -950 penalties simply employ best web marketing strategies. It comes down to best SEO practices and being straight forward in their applications. There is no need to do any keyword stuffing in page titles, alt tags, description or even in the content. Pure and simple good, informative content is appropriate. Remember to always build your site with the user in mind and not the search engines.
As far as links, avoid using any links to farms or sites which practice any type of link manipulation. Consistently build links and change up your link anchors where possible. At all costs, avoid doorway pages and cloaking.
There are several things that can result in a Google penalty and the whole internet world is still reeling trying to figure them all out. But one thing seems to be holding true whether it is duplicate content, inappropriate link building or too many ads; once the infraction is discovered and repaired the penalty is removed; although it may take 6 months to a year to remove the penalty and it may require the webmaster to submit a reconsideration request to Google.
In the past year a number of prominent companies such as JCPenney and Overstock have been hit by Google penalties b/c they ignored the rules and tried to game Google, they will likely be paying the price for this for many years to come. Remember, Google is not “The Internet”, it is a private company, and being included in the Google index is not a “right” given to webmasters by the government or g-d but rather it is a privilege that can be taken away if you misbehave. Our best advice is to not use black hat SEO techniques and to question your SEO firm about the tactics that they employ. If you think that your site has been hit by a Google penalty you should contact a trusted internet marketing company that has a reputation for using best SEO practices and white hat SEO.
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