Let us consider the scenario where you have content and you can’t wait for it to rank high in Google search pages, but, instead, get penalized for it! How demoralizing and degrading that could be for your business!
The reality is if we are not aware of the penalties that could be cast on us by Google, then the chances of getting penalized get multiplied. Thus, it is very essential to know about the ins and outs of the penalties including how to avoid Google penalties.
There are multiple scenarios of how a website can get penalized. Recovering from Google penalties can be a tough job, so as a business, it is important for you to know how to avoid Google penalties and craft quality content.
Here is a complete guide for you to understand how Google can penalize your website, how you can avoid such penalties, and how to recover once penalized. So, let’s get started.
How Google Penalizes Your Website
Google can penalize your website if it finds out that your content has somehow violated the norms or is engaged with ill-intended or spammy practices. These penalties can have a significant deteriorating impact on your website’s search engine rankings.
To avoid such a situation, let us explore how Google might penalize your content.
1. Manual Penalties
Issues such as unnatural link building, duplicate or thin content, keyword stuffing, and cloaking can get you into penalties. Google typically employs human reviewers whose job is to review content from various websites and detect any foul play with Google’s guidelines.
When a reviewer finds non-compliant content, he is entitled to impose a manual penalty on the website.
2. Algorithmic Penalties
Google’s algorithm for search results gets better and better and evolves continually to fetch you the best search results. Now, your site rankings might be adversely affected in case the content is not in alignment with these search algorithms.
Panda penalty, Penguin penalty, and Fred penalty are some common algorithmic penalties you might encounter.
3. Unnatural Link Penalties
In case your website is linked to unnatural or spammy backlinks, Google is sure to penalize your website. Such penalties may come to you through manual actions or an algorithm update like the Panda penalty or Penguin penalty.
4. Mobile-Friendly Penalties
Mobile search results are a very important factor for Google penalties. If your website is not mobile-friendly or cannot provide up to the par customer experiences, then Google might penalize you in the mobile search results.
5. Security Issues
Google always tries to protect its users from harmful websites. So, if your website has security issues, Google is surely to dislike it. Security vulnerabilities or malware attacks may get your website flagged and penalized immediately.
Yes, over-optimizing exists. Often, we try the best possible ways to optimize our websites but end up over-optimizing them. One such scenario is excessive keyword usage. Thus, it is essential that you maintain a natural and focused approach to SEO optimizations.
7. User Experience Penalties
Low-quality user experience is also a cause of Google penalties. Poor user experience includes slow loading time, unauthorized ad campaigns, or any other malpractices. As Google is focused on providing the best user experience to its customers, detecting such ill practices on your website will get you penalized.
8. Duplicate Content Penalties
This is a grave and unforgivable situation for Google. Google’s algorithm does not tolerate duplicate content in any situation. If your website hosts a significant amount of duplicate content, then your website is most likely to get penalized by Google.
How to Avoid Getting Penalized by Google
It is beyond saying that you would want high-quality content for your website and would like to apply every possible way to make it a high-ranking one.
To achieve this, you must know how to avoid Google penalties. Here are some ways to do it.
1. Understand Google Guidelines
The very first step you take is to gain detailed know-how on Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. These guidelines will tell you what is acceptable for Google and what is not.
2. Avoid Link-Farming
Link farming is when a website contains low-quality or spammy backlinks. To combat link farming, Google came up with some powerful algorithm updates such as Google Penguin and Google Panda. If you do not want your website to be in the face of Google penalties, then you must avoid link-farming.
3. Create Rich and Quality Content
As Google’s algorithm gets smarter and more effective in showing relevant and helpful results, it is now ranking content that is rich and comprehensive in nature. Keyword-rich content having around 2000 words will thus rank higher in SERPs.
To ensure it is high-quality content you must avoid duplicate or thin content, too much keyword stuffing, etc., and add valuable, original, and relevant content for the best user experience.
4. Focus on Establishing LDR
Linking Domain Relevancy or LDR means that your website must link to other websites with relevant or niche domains. With Google’s focus shifted from Page Rank(PR) to LDR, you must generate backlinks only from relevant websites to avoid Google penalties.
5. Optimize User Experience
As Google prioritizes user experience, you must enhance your website’s user experience by techniques such as ensuring easy navigation, quick loading time, and mobile-friendliness. Avoid anything that disrupts your user experience including unauthorized pop-ups or other ad campaigns.
6. Use Google Search Console
Google Search Console or other third-party backlink analysis will help you to regularly monitor and audit your backlink profile. By doing this you can avoid any suspicious or spammy links.
Also, it will help you track messages, alerts, and issues related to your website performance and report you on any potential penalties.
7. Use Secure and Reliable Hosting
A credible hosting provider offers security features intended to protect a website from hacking or malware attacks. Use such hosting to protect your website and not get penalized by Google.
8, Update Regularly
You must regularly update your website content, plugins, and software so as to minimize the security vulnerabilities of your site.
9. Ensure Legal Compliance
10. Stay Informed
Stay informed about any latest Google algorithm updates and upgrades in Google’s guidelines by following Google’s official blog and subscribing to industry news. This will help you to optimize your content accordingly.
Brief Tips to Recover From The Penalty
Though recovering is not easy, here are certain expert tips you can apply to do it.
- Determine the type of penalty, either manual or algorithmic.
- Conduct a thorough audit and look for issues such as low-quality content, spammy backlinks, security issues, and technical errors.
- Resolve the issues that are identified. This may include improving the content, removing bad backlinks, and fixing technical issues.
- Enhance your user experience by ensuring quick website loading, mobile-friendliness, and free from unauthorized campaigns.
- Continuously monitor and audit your website performance.
- Ask for professional guidance/assistance.
As for professional help, digital marketing agencies such as Dignitas Digital offer various SEO services to get the best-optimized content. Our all-inclusive SEO services encompass keyword research, on-page optimization, off-page optimization, local search optimization, and others with no room for penalties.
Through our all-inclusive SEO services, we have helped clients get increased online visibility, targeted traffic, higher revenues, brand authority, and higher reach.
Google is quite protective about the user experience it is catering to. Thus, it has applied several measures to ensure quality content for its users. It penalizes any content that will berate its user experience. If you want your website to rank higher in Google search engine results pages then you must know how to avoid Google penalties.
So, know the scenarios that cause Google penalties, and get hold of any possible way to avoid them. It is best you take an expert’s advice to handle such a situation. That way you can ensure protection from penalties to your business.