Link Building Evolves, Google Penalizes Unnatural Links
Just recently, Google started warning webmasters about unnatural link building activity. Google has known about websites that participate in link networks, buy high PageRank backlinks and participate in spam link building but never notified the webmasters that Google was on to them.
Luckily, no one at KEO received the dreaded “unnatural” links message from Google, but here is what the Google Search Quality Team has been sending out to webmasters engaging in spam link building.
Eric Ward of Search Engine Watch has chimed in on how this can change link building campaigns and what its effect is on search engine rank changes. Ward has seven key occurrences that can explain why your website drooped in search engine rankings.
- Competitor sites gained additional legitimate high PageRank links
- Google changed their search algorithms
- High PageRank sites you had backlinks from shut down
- A competitor is cheating and now outranks you
- Google devalued pages linking to your site
- You were caught cheating
- A competitor attacked your site using a negative SEO campaign
A small drop in rankings if often nothing to worry about, but if you received a warning message from Google or if you have been knowingly participating in spammy link building processes, it’s time to change your strategy.