In the previous post about Google Penguin we’ve tried to understand the main principles of the new algorithm and define its “target audience”. All tips were dedicated to avoiding penalization by Google Penguin.
This time we’ll define the master plan for websites which have been already penalized by Google Penguin and now have to deal with the aftermath.
First of all let’s take look at the main symptom of penalization by Google Penguin: dramatic decrease in organic traffic from Google a few days after April, 24th. If the chart of organic traffic from Google in your Google Analytics account shows something like you see on the picture above, your website is very likely to have been hit by Google Penguin.
What should you do next? Here come the tips:
- First of all take a look at what Google knows about your website. Go to google.com and make a query: site:yourdomain.com Make sure you see pages which are really useful for people. “Print” pages, dynamically generated pages and sorted content on dedicated URL’s might look great for you, but not for Google. Disallow these useless pages in robots.txt
- Check if the content of your website is still unique and considered by Google as yours.
- Check “HTML Improvements” Section in your Google Webmaster Tools account. Correct as many problems there as you can. Google tells you very clearly what you should do to make your website better – just listen to it.
- Check for notifications about unnatural links in your Google Webmaster Tools account: remove all outbound links which Google considers as unnatural ones.
- Take a closer look at the link portfolio of your website. If you maintain a link building campaign, check the reports. If your link portfolio grows more or less naturally, use “Links to Your Website” section of Google Webmaster tools and SEOMoz` OpenSiteExplorer. Identify links which don’t have anything in common with good links (comments in spammed blog posts, abandoned forums spammed by automatic submissions, “link farms” on “partner” websites etc.) and do your best to delete these links. Report to Google about the inbound links which you haven’t been able to remove via Disavow Tool in your Google Webmaster Tools account.
- Finally send the Reconsideration Request to Google from your Google Webmaster Tools account with a detailed description of every activity you`ve done to improve the quality of your website.
Google cares about the quality of search results more than most of other search engines. It really values good websites (which are actually not as numerous as crappy websites). If your website fully meets the requirements Google claims in its Webmaster Guide, you don’t have to worry about possible penalties or algorithms updates to come.