Why I Think the Advice from SEO Companies on Recovering from Panda and Penguin is Not Right
The following opinion was written by Danny Ramdenee a business acquaintance of mine that I met through PushbuttonSEO. Danny is extremely active in the user group forum and usually has great knowledge to share. So, I thought I’d pass on one of his more recent posts regarding the Google Panda and Penguin updates and all the laughable experts tossing their opinions out there on how to recover your SEO ratings.
How many of you have been getting a stream of requests from a new breed of SEO opportunist – the link removal consultant?
“Dear Web Site Owner, we’d really appreciate it if you would remove the following link from your web site…”
They might as well be saying, “Dear Web Site Owner, we’d really appreciate if you would create a brand new fingerprint for Google to analyse that confirms they legitimately targeted our spam links…”
Because if I was Google I’d be watching very carefully as all those links vanished overnight and I’d be taking names and building a list and keeping a very close eye on the domain names that keep on cropping up. But that’s beside the point.
What I really want to talk about is the latest advice going out from the big players about how to recover from the latest purge. And that advice is simple enough – more of the same but with a few tweaks. Or put another way, let’s take Google for an idiot and keep this ball rolling a while longer.
So what’s the advice now? Easy enough, keep on spamming those links but change the anchor text. Change the types of site you spam to, don’t use the blog networks but instead assault Web2.0 appliances. Use your brand a lot more, use your domain name, vary the keywords in the anchor text, try to make your unnatural activity look as natural as possible.
Isn’t this a bit like the rabbit caught in the headlights changing his silhouette to look like a crafty fox? You’re getting run down anyway if you want to play games in the road. How is creating a brand new target for the next Google purge going to help you in the long run? It’s tactics and strategy that need to change, not the camouflage. Surely the goal here is to take the latest developments in the search engines and react smartly rather than try to preserve a way of doing business that has clearly been identified as undesirable and counter-productive in the long term?
All the search engines are really saying is hey, we count a link as a vote but if we spot you voting multiple times in multiple districts then we don’t trust you and we don’t want you in our list of results. And once you’ve been caught rigging elections then don’t expect that slate to be wiped clean just because you hide your vote rigging a little better. You’re on the list buddy, we see you now.
The decent SEOs who have been laughed at for years for playing it straight down the line have had it right all along. When you produce quality and add value you don’t need to worry about any of these penalties or pit falls. The long game they have been advocating is gathering strength with each algorithm shift. Their link profiles are already natural because they are built on the back of real folks providing real votes because they find the content they are consuming valuable and they want to talk about it and share it. They don’t bother with the short cuts because they know the long game is far more effective in the long run anyway.
Now I’m not for a moment claiming to be one of those white hat dudes toughing it out in the spam infested maelstrom. I’ve had my fair share of sites booted in this latest round, high page rank established domains that drove a lot of (low quality) traffic, sites that played the numbers game. Sites that absolutely deserved to be purged because they were pure garbage and added zero to the net.
That said, I gave up with those tactics two years back when I twigged the way things were heading (with the help of a few prescient friends). Now I don’t bother building links at all, instead I have become lazy. I let other people build links for me. This saves me money and time and with that time I can build content that people actually want to share. My sites tend to crawl up the rankings at a snail’s pace. No get rich quick for me (mind you I wasn’t getting rich quick doing it the other way either – were you?)
That said, guess what, in the last few weeks my newer, cleaner sites have all jumped nicely in the rankings. And I haven’t had to scramble around asking people to remove links, I haven’t had to change my link profiles, I haven’t had to run huge link analysis reports, I haven’t had to do anything at all in fact – except continue to add value to my sites and watch that value translate into rankings. I view this as a lesson learned and a lesson confirmed. I want to play in the search engines so I have taken time to read the rule book and apply it. Because it makes sense.
Am I going to follow the latest advice coming down from the grey hat SEO “gurus”? Not really, no need to. Am I naive in thinking these grey hats are gone and won’t find another way to win back their rankings at my expense? No not naive (just a bit premature maybe), it could happen, probably will. It could be we need to go around this loop a few more times before the search engines finally find a way to properly measure relevance and quality. But I won’t be losing sleep as it all unfolds, I’ll leave the sleep deprivation to Google’s engineers on one side and the doomed diehards on the other, I’ll let them fight the war and wait patiently for the dust to settle. And I’ll keep on adding value all the time.
Because I’m interested in my visitors, not the search engines, not the spammers.
So the smart move now is not to start donning new disguises. I’m going back over all my domains and getting rid of the ones that represent a blight on my online presence. That’ll be more money in my pocket in terms of saved registration fees, less to maintain, less legacies out there that can bite me as I move forward with a quality based business. I suggest you do the same.
The bottom line is this. Google and the other search engines want quality results in their search engine listings. When you look at your site if you can honestly say it provides great value to your visitors (forget about the search engines) and provides the type of information you yourself would like to find when searching for a particular keyword, then relax. Let the techies figure out how to drive your information to the top of the rankings.
But if you are determined to find ways to mutate your low quality information that nobody wants to see into a form that will squeeze past the search engine filters in the short term then good luck with that. Not sure why you want to spend time and money wasting your time and money.
Think long and hard before you follow the latest SEO advice to repeat the mistakes of the past. I have and I’ve gone the way that was right under my nose from day #1. And it’s paying off.
I think that Danny hit the nail on the head and drove it home and his post really breaks it down and lays it out.
I myself have suspected this is the way to go all along and it makes perfect sense.
I add the following to Danny’s case:
- -Google is a HUGE business. ( and wants to continue to be that way)
- -They make their money on advertising rental space (ie adwords, adsense on millions of people sites, and their SERPS sponsored ad/featured ad sections)
- -Google knows that the more people they have that use their “FREE” tools (like their search engine), the more eyeballs that are viewing their search results.
More eyeballs = more Valuable AD space!!! (they can demand more money per click from advertisers because business owners need to get their message in front of tons of eyeballs to make sales and thrive)
The more traffic google has, the more advertisers are willing to pay to get in front of that traffic. and because many advertisers recognize the immense value in keyword phrases with high commercial intent ( ie kw: “best deal on iphone 4″) the biz owners are willing to pay more to beat out their competitors and snag that prime ad space… thus creating a bidding war….. thus Making google even richer :O)
- -Google likes this :O)
- -Therefore their goal is too continue to dominate the world as the #1 most used search engine
Google knows that users are becoming more and more impatient and want the exact high quality info that they are looking for and they want it yesterday!
In order to satisfy the world’s internet users, google NEEDS to be the search engine that quicky returns the absolute MOST relevant, golden info-packed webpages available.… OR ELSE … users will go to and start using a search engine that DOES return the high quality info that the searcher is looking for.
Google is also just doing what works and giving people what they WANT.
This is the reason Google keeps doing these all those updates, and messing with your rankings! It’s not to irritate us (although, that’s probably part of it LOL), it’s because they have to give people what they want. Their business depends on it!
So the bottom line is this:…
If you want some “Google Love” for your WordPress blog give people what they want when they search for any given search term. Brian, Danny and Mario and others here have got this figured out! The reason this approach has longevity is that we are satisfying google because they need our quality content that adds value to peoples lifes. When google serves up our quality to people, Google is then viewed as the ultimate quality solution resource (when people have a question does the phrase “Google it !” ever come up in conversation??). … and people keep coming back.
Make your info helpful/valuable, then people will like it and come back for more help. Google will measure this likablility and reward us for our content by putting us in front of eyeballs by giving us prime time organic rankings.
I hope this helps to solidify the “why” this approach is really the best one for wordpress blog marketers, web surfers, for Google and ultimately for YOU and for me.
Filed under: Wordpress Marketing SEO
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