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Unnatural Link Penalty - Please Help Me!

Discussion in 'SEO' started by Susan23, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. #1
    Hey everyone,
    SEMrush
    This is my first post here and I'm very sorry if any of this has been repeated on the forum. Due to the new Google Hummingbird update and all of you being experts (I hope) on SEO and my problem I wanted to post my own topic on the matter. I hope someone with the proper knowledge has time to respond and help, thank you in advance for any reply.

    NOTE: Due to the nature of the website we would rather not list the URL but we can provide any kind of information someone may need beside the URL itself.



    The Problem
    Last week we got a notification from Google that we had Unnatural links coming to our site and we were put on a site wide restriction until we fixed it, here is the exact message.

    [​IMG]

    Manual Actions
    This site may not perform as well in Google results because it appears to be in violation of Google's Webmaster Guidelines.

    Site-wide matches Some manual actions apply to entire site

    Reason
    Unnatural links to your site
    Google has detected a pattern of unnatural artificial, deceptive, or manipulative links pointing to pages on this site. These may be the result of buying links that pass PageRank or participating in link schemes. Learn more.




    The Traffic & Money Issue
    We use to get great traffic to the website as you can see below, now that the penalty is in place that has gone down to near nothing. Also we were making a good amount of money to support our staff and now that is also almost gone. With this being our ONLY online business (for 6 different families) this is pretty bad.

    [​IMG]

    Currently the only new traffic comes from word of mouth and people who are already registered.




    The Directions on HOW to Fix the Problem
    I have gone over all the Google webmaster tool guides as well as the Google webmaster forums (where many people were just rude and not very helpful). From everything I looked at, watched, etc it says to remove as many bad links as you can and then disavow the rest while keeping good notes. The problem is it seems the old SEO company we hired built some really bad links and we even think a competitor site has been building links against us as well due to the amount of links built. Our site was so popular before and doing so well we never checked Google Webmaster Tools or thought about the issue until we got the email from Google and the penalty. While I do understand this is rather bad on my part we were always busy with tech support and helping customers. Once we did check our backlinks we found some pretty bad news (see image below).

    [​IMG]





    What Has Been Done?
    We looked over the links but with the sheer amount it would take us months to check them all and see what was good and bad. So we narrowed them down by linking domains, checked a few of the given links and marked them as bad if they looked like spam. Many sites link to us 500+ times or more. We actually contacted about 60 sites and never got an answer from anyone. The older SEO company we used said the links were permanent so we used the disavow tool on those domains.

    We then sent in a reconsideration request and still have NOT heard back from Google, it's been 10 days *sigh*.




    What Should We Do?
    So I've been thinking about this a bunch after reading all the current information on the topic. I'm not really sure what to do and wanted some guidance. Should we......

    1) Wait to see if Google will clear up and remove the penalty and then see how things go after that?

    2) Move the website to a new URL? Right now we have it at _________.net, maybe we could move it to ___________.org or ___________.us? Then if we move it tell people via the older site that we moved? Wouldnt that fix the issue and start us as new?

    If moving to a new domain is the answer should we 301 redirect all the older pages and site or should we just put a message on the main domain with a link? This has really been something I cant get a straight answer on so far.




    Anyway, thanks for any help you guys can give me, this has given me and lots of other people some pretty bad anxiety over the past two weeks so I hope someone has time to give us a little help.

    Regards,
    Susan23
     
    Susan23, Oct 3, 2013 IP
    SEMrush
  2. webmaster1189

    webmaster1189 Well-Known Member

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    #2
    yeah right after Panda updates everyone is innocence, before you all used to pay amounts for these kind of bad links to promote your sites, i am happy with these updates from google, it's people like you who has been manipulating the whole SEO business
     
    webmaster1189, Oct 3, 2013 IP
  3. Joe Curmi

    Joe Curmi Member

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    #3

    Hi

    My opinion first of all is that its so stupid to fire these kinds of backlinks to your MAIN site when you know that one day or another you site will get penalised.

    From my experience as an seo consultant i would first wait for google's reply. I came across situations like these before and most of the time we managed to obtain good rankings again.

    You should have included the following in your reply to google:

    • Explain that you have been working to correct your mistakes in order to abide by Google’s quality guidelines
    • Explain what changes have been made to your website. So for this example we have assessed our backlinks and have attempted to remove unnatural links.
    • This is the most important part I believe, upload the spreadsheet you made earlier containing all of the links you wished to remove to Google docs and save it in Google’s format. Add a link to this document so they can see your love of Google’s products!
    • State that you used the disavow tool to remove the unnatural links.
    • Confirm that you agree to Google’s principles for its search engine service
    • Finally add one last paragraph apologising and that your client is committed to correcting their past mistakes.
    In case the penalty is not removed ask the team at google for help.

    Move on from there, make sure you start

    a. writing GOOD QUALITY CONTENT on your site with good internal linking structure
    b. creating HIGH PR RELEVANT backlinks with varied anchor text (use long sentences with the keyword within the sentence as anchor) You should start considering having your own private blog network. These are the most effective and safest because you have full control.
    c. SOCIAL PROOF....ITS ALL CONNECTED. Make sure you have google+, facebook, twitter, youtube and other social sites like pinterest, linkedin and tumblr connected and pointing back to your site. Google loves to see traffic coming from these social sites even though its not much.
    You can fire some backlinks using magicsubmitter to these social sites (i call this link laundering) This will never hurt your site because you are not linking directly to your site but to these MASSIVE social sites which google love.

    Be patient. Do not expect to get high rankings over night. It will take weeks and months to get back to the level of monthly visitors you used to have before the slap. But if you do the right things, you will reap the rewards in the long run.

    With regards to moving the website to another URL, i do not think this is the best solution. Remember google is not stupid and if you will keep the same content/pages google will still associate the new url with the old site.

    And moreover redirecting your old url to a new site will hurt your new site because you are pointing your old site full of spammy backlinks to your new website.

    Hope this helps

    If you need any more help please send me a private message and let me know the website url.

    Joe
     
    Joe Curmi, Oct 3, 2013 IP
  4. Sam Idoeb

    Sam Idoeb Member

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    #4
    Contacting Google's team is never easy. Joe's suggestion is very good. You must be patient.
     
    Sam Idoeb, Oct 3, 2013 IP
  5. ktp2012

    ktp2012 Active Member

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    #5
    Authority Backlinks And Instant SEO

    Feeder sites are an exceptionally fast and easy method of building high quality back-links from some of the highest authority websites online.

    Not only are these pages easy to create and maintain, but you can literally develop a massive back-link system in a matter of a few days, just by creating a network of feeder sites and landing pages.
    Feeder sites are typically hosted for free on sites like Squidoo.com and HubPages.com, as well as articles that are submitted to various online article repositories.
    Many of these websites have a lot of authority with Google and other search engines, which means they are already relatively “trusted”. Since they are established as being good quality sites, links from them carry a significant amount of weight as far as search engines go.
     
    ktp2012, Oct 5, 2013 IP
  6. Susan23

    Susan23 Peon

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    #6
    ktp2012 is that an advertising response? lol
     
    Susan23, Oct 6, 2013 IP
  7. monkeywisdom

    monkeywisdom Member

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    #7
    ktp2012: Hubpages and Squidoo are considered low quality sites by Google. Same with ezinearticles.com and others. The quality of the page on those sites is specific to the page. They also announced that linking to yourself, even from Psychology Today or Huff Post isn't going to be worth anything pretty soon.
     
    monkeywisdom, Oct 26, 2013 IP