Do you know? Every day, Google’s search engine keeps making many significant changes to improve each of its algorithms so that the best websites can get sufficient and decent exposure. Because in essence, Google has a big, uncompromising goal: it wants to give its users access to more accurate information, more unique content and the best-talented authors.
But even so, Google also has penalties in the form of penalties for violating websites. The consequences of Google are given to website site owners who do not comply with any rules and policies made by Google.
Of course this can be a nightmare for business owners. You have struggled to build a website, and it turns out that someone told you that the traffic on your website has dropped dramatically. Plus your website has come out of the top Google rankings for the keywords you have targeted.
What is Google Penalty?
As we know that Google has changed its ranking algorithm since December 2000. That’s when Google started releasing extensions for each of its toolbars. And since then, the toolbar update represents a major change that has created the SEO industry as we know it today. The fact is that it is the first time PageRank is published in a usable form.
Over the decades, Google has continued to improve the quality of its search results. Over time, Google started eliminating poor quality content and elevating good quality stuff to the top of the SERP. That is why Google Penalties are starting to become one of Google’s policies.
Admit Google Penalties
Penalties can be carried out by Google automatically or manually. With manual penalties, you may be notified in advance by Google, but you may not always know that you have been targeted if the cause is algorithmic. Such penalties or penalties may surprise all parties even the most experienced SEO professionals.
For algorithmic penalties, here are a few examples:
- Your website no longer ranks well for your brand name. Surely this is the worst gift for you. Even if your site doesn’t rank for many things.
- The position of the first page of your website in the Google search engine starts slipping back to page two or three without any action on your part.
- The PageRank for your site has unexpectedly dropped from two or three to zero.
- Entire websites were removed from Google’s cached search results overnight.
- Searching for a website with the keyword yourdomain.com in the Google search engine gave no results.
- If you look at one or more of the factors above, it means you can be sure that Google penalties have affected your website.
Why Google Penalty Your Website
Google continues to make updates by changing and revising the way it indexes content. Although Google often publishes every latest update about its algorithm updates, it rarely explains all the reasons for the changes. So that fixing various things can be difficult because of it.
To get you on the right track, here’s the part you’ve been waiting for, 20 common reasons why Google penalizes or penalizes your website. Read carefully below.
1. Buy Link
Buying links can of course be seen as an attempt to manipulate PageRank, and therein lies the controversy. If you have bought bad links all this time, your actions could affect your website and it could be that your website will be the one that will be subject to Google Penalties.
2. Excessive Reciprocal Links
In fact, exchanging backlinks with other website owners is fine if you know the limitations and are not abused. If you have exchanged multiple links with a client, it could be seen as an attempt at manipulation.
3. Plagiarized or Plagiarized Content
Most of the people here, of course, already understand this one thing, that content that is not original, aka plagiarism, will make it less useful on Google’s display, and that can result in penalties. Make sure your content is unique and well written. To test your writing for plagiarism or not, you can use a tool like Copyscape.
4. Excessive Use of H1 Tags
Arranging the content correctly will certainly help SEO on your website. H1 tags help Google understand what the page is about. However, excessive H1 tags can also be seen or read by Google as an attempt to retrieve Google’s list with keywords.
5. 404 Internal Error
Google wants to know that you are interested in your content and get rid of any errors and problems. If you post a 404 on your own website, it’s a sure signal that your users are not getting the information they asked for.
6. Links from Websites in Other Languages
This one seems unfair, right? You get official links from clients in other countries, but technically these links are considered detrimental to you. The reason Google makes sense is that users generally tend to choose one language, so linking to sites in another language is not very useful to them.
7. Keywords are filled with content
There are all kinds of weird and good ‘rules’ about keyword density in content. The truth is that none of these rules have been proven, and a very high keyword density is a sign for poorly written content. If Google detects a very high number of keywords on a page, Google can certainly punish you.
8. Footer Links
Some website designers use footer links as a navigation aid. Some of them try to manipulate PageRank by using the footer as a place to unreasonably pass links.
9. Site Map Data Missing
Google uses XML sitemaps to break down the structure of your website and learn how to structure it. Make sure your XML sitemap is available and up to date, then submit it to your Webmaster Tools account.
10. Hidden Links
All links on your website must be visible and useful to users. Anything that is hidden will still be considered suspicious by Google. Never create links that are the same color as the page or button background, even if you have no clear reason.
11. Broken External Links
If you don’t keep updating your links, Google will assume you don’t care about the user experience and are happy to direct visitors to various 404 error pages. Check links periodically and pull links that are broken or inaccessible.
12. Copy Content
Sometimes site managers pull content from other sites to mass aggregate their own pages. Often times, this is done with good intentions, and this may be an unintended mistake. But Google sees this as pointless duplication. Replace it with original content that you created yourself.
13. Hidden Content
Unethical optimization tactics include masking text on a page to manipulate theme or keyword weighting. It’s clear that this is a very big prohibition.
14. Anchor Text Too Often Used
In ancient times, SEO experts worked to link certain keywords to strengthen their authority. Since the Penguin update in 2012, the use of excessive anchor text links is strongly discouraged. Replace your forced and unnatural keyword links with honest links that are uttered in native English.
15. Ignore Hreflang
“Hreflang” is designed to tell Google that you are intentionally publishing duplicate content for a different language or locality. The jury wants to know if it really helps, but using it won’t hurt in the meantime.
16. Keyword Domain
While domain names are not too risky, domain names with keywords may be. Consider the anchor text link problem, if you repeatedly link to that domain, Google might see it as Anchor text manipulation.
If you’re using an exact matched domain, make sure it has lots of good content on it. If not, Google will assume you are trying to trick people into clicking on your website.
17. Affiliate Links Everywhere
Google is not always against affiliate websites, but a large number of affiliate links are a sign that the content may not be what it wants. Even if you cover all your affiliate links with some redirects, Google would still be wise to penalize those websites. Therefore, don’t rely too much on these affiliate links.
18. Using the Blog Network
As far as Google policy is concerned, any type of network is a sign of potential SERP manipulation. Most of the blog networks are now closed or giving users the opportunity to remove all these inbound links. You should too.
How to Check Google Penalties
The first thing you should do as a marketer is try to find out what really happened and why it happened. The exact course of action can differ greatly depending on the type of SEO diagnosis you provide in the situation.
It can be something as simple as an intern doing something silly that Google doesn’t like (eg the staff at BMW once added a ‘no index, no follow’ tag on every page and the website couldn’t be indexed). In such a case, you will see 2 minutes of work that will completely change your situation.
In other cases, you may have been awarded a penalty that took a lot of work and took several months to recover. If this is the case, you should make sure you know what you are talking about before you take any lengthy action to correct the scenario. If you are wrong about your diagnosis, you will probably spend a lot of time and energy.
Here are some steps you can take to check for problems that occur on your website:
1. See Your Main Keywords That Have Dropped Significantly
This will help tell you whether your problem is really SEO related or not. If your website traffic drops but your main keywords don’t change position significantly, you may not be subject to manual penalties or the Penguin algorithm.
You can also look at your website traffic analytics and look specifically at the organic traffic statistics. It will work better to let you know about the same.
2. See Decreasing Your Website Traffic
A quick Google search for “Google update calendar” will inform you of a reliable list of dates when the update was made. You should look for a “significant” drop in traffic synchronized with these dates. If you see a clear correlation, chances are you’ve found the culprit.
3. Look in Google Webmaster Tools
This is where you may receive notifications about improper link building or manual penalties that have been given to your website. You should also look at the crawl rate and errors that occur. These kinds of things will usually cause a website to take a sharp downturn.
Those are some reasons why websites are subject to Google penalties and how to check them. By knowing some of these reasons, of course you have to be even more careful in making good content for your website and don’t get a Google penalty.
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