If you have been facing a decrease in the extent of traffic to your site recently then it could be because of being affected by Penguin 2.0 which came into effect with a view to penalize sites for SEO malpractices. Penguin is different from Panda in that while the former target the site quality, the latter focuses on stuffing of keywords, anchor text and dubious link profiles.
More about Penguin 2.0
Since Penguin 2.0 is a recent finding, nobody knows the full extent of the update completely. While Penguin 1.0 mostly aimed at eliminating Webspam, Penguin 2.0 can target your site for the aforesaid defects. Some of the links that can get you into problems include:
- Paid and advertorial links
- Mass updates to low quality directories
- Blog links from spam sites or posts that are irrelevant to your niche
Penguin 2.0 updates mostly target hacked sites or those having inferior content. Alternatively sites having solid link profiles and fresh content can get better rankings. So, Penguin mostly aims to help users enjoy a pleasurable online experience.
Its main goal is to provide the best sites for search queries by releasing a series of updates on a continuous basis. In order to enjoy high page rankings, webmasters have to change and evolve as per these updates.
In case you have been affected by Penguin 2.0, there is no need to panic. You can use the tips enumerated below to recover from its onslaught.
#1. Do not worry
If you have faced a Penguin attack, it can be owing to some of the bad decisions that you may have taken in the past. This can also be owing to incorporation of unethical or black hat techniques such as keyword stuffing and bad links in the past which could have got you into a bad position in the first place. So, instead of panicking you can alter the situation by accepting your mistakes and moving forward in a different direction.
You should understand your mistakes and refrain from using such techniques again in the future. Adopting white hat techniques can save from a Penguin attack. You can also hire the help of SEO professionals to know what went wrong and to avoid mistakes in the future.
#2. Be flexible by concentrating on the future
Although the black-hat techniques work for some sites, it can produce results only in the short-term. An unknown site can gain enhanced visibility, improved rankings and start generating a profit.
However, the rankings tend to fall once the search engines start catching up. Then your entire efforts will prove futile leading to the wastage of time and money. Those who use black hat techniques will not be able to occupy a top slot on major search engines for a long time to make profits.
By having long-term goals for your site trying hard to achieve it you can get positive results from your site. Search engines are always looking to eliminate the weak sites and your main goal should be to create sites that are strong and sound through ethical means.
#3. Start afresh
You should start afresh by eliminating things that got you into a bad position.
You should analyze your SEO efforts and refrain from using automated bookmarking software or links from other bogus sites.
You can start repairing the situation only by omitting things that got you into such a situation in the first place. If you really wish to make a good start you should stop using dubious software or getting into contracts with link buying providers.
#4. Do a site link audit
Getting a Google penalty calls for an immediate decision to get into action and take steps to prevent the devaluation of your site. You should pay attention to your link profile since Penguin 2.0 is mostly about bad linking. You can hire the services of a SEO expert to do a full link audit for you if you wish to have a brighter picture.
You can locate instances of over optimization and know more about your inbound link profile through this audit. You can also know about the links that are creating problems and take the essential steps to disavow them.
You can send a letter of reconsideration after the removal of links. Even if you have not been given a penalty, you should get an audit done. Downloading the list of incoming links that Google currently associates with your site is the easiest way to do this effectively. If you wish to access your inbound links from Google Webmaster Tools, you can follow the steps outlined below:
- Login to Google Webmaster Tools
- After clicking on website click on the “Traffic” on the left navigation
- Click “Links to your site”
- Click “Who links most”
- Click “Download latest links”
#5. Analyze your links
You can take up a complete analysis after you have compiled the list of the links. You can look for factors such as repetition of anchor text, relevance of the site to your niche etc. You can make a list of the links that may be affecting your page rankings. If you are unsure about which ones to delete, you can also erase the doubtful ones to get better results.
But before you advance to that step you should go through all the links completely. For doing this in the best possible way, contact a reputable SEO firm.
#6. Eliminate the offending links
You should remove the bad links quickly and efficiently after identifying the same on your site. You can take the help of webmasters for doing this by emailing to them a list of the links. Another option is to ask domains to limit the extent of anchor text or change it fully. Taking these measures can enable Google to review your efforts before granting a favorable reconsideration.
Your site can be hit badly by Penguin 2.0. Recovering from its effects can take a long time. However you can approach the recovery in a systematic way to get good rankings all over again.