Sneaky SEO Tactics to Get You on Google’s Blacklist

Sneaky SEO Tactics to Get You on Google’s Blacklist

SEO is a vital tool in your online marketing, but if you aren’t careful your site could end up at the bottom of the heap with just a few bad decisions. Google is constantly looking for new ways to filter out and block sites that try to manipulate their algorithm. When Google crawls the Internet and finds a site that uses unfair manipulation of the system, they add that site to the blacklist to keep them from showing up in any search result. Below is a list of easy ways you can prevent your site from joining the ranks of the Google blacklist.

1.       Avoid Cloaking – Cloaking is the term for adding text and links to your site that are hidden from your human visitors. It’s almost common knowledge these days that your site must contain keyword-rich content in order for Google to pick up on that content and give you a high page rank. In the past, sites could get a good ranking by stuffing keywords into as many places as possible in their website. They could then hide those keywords by making the words very small, using CSS properties, or by putting them in white text on a white background. This will work for a week or two, but Google has caught on to this trick and will blacklist your site.

2.       Using too many keywords too often – Like cloaking, key word stuffing can get you blacklisted quickly. Keyword stuffing happens when a site uses a large amount of redundant keywords in their content. The best solution for your site is to create keyword rich copy that makes sense to a human reader. Your keyword ratio should be about 3%-5% and they should be placed where it counts – in header tags, title tags, and links.

3.       Adding content too quickly – Google crawls each site on the Internet often (some daily). So it’s easy for them to tell if you decided to go and look for hundreds of syndicated articles with keyword content and place them on your site. If you’re site is 20 pages and next week it is 100 pages, you could easily make it on to the blacklist. Release your material slowly (not too slowly!), consistently, and make it unique.

4.       Excessive Link Exchange and Link Farming – You may hear that getting your site linked from other sites is a great way to increase your page rank. That’s true, but did you know that having a long page full of links on your website can get you blacklisted? It’s true! While there is some benefit in exchanging links with high ranking, relevant sites, it is easy to get blacklisted for having a “link farm” page with hundreds of link it. Google won’t blacklist you for having your site link on another site’s link farm page, but having your link on a page like that doesn’t do you any good. The sheer quantity of links on the page will dilute any benefit.

5.       Numerous domain names or doorway pages – Setting up a domain that forwards to your site is not taboo in regards to Google, however, if you have too many of them Google will find that misleading and could ban your site. Doorway pages are pages that are made specifically for search engines (not to be seen by users) and appeal to each search engine’s search algorithm. Using these types of pages to “trick” the search engines will get you blacklisted.  This particular offence is difficult to reverse.

The right way to perform SEO:

1.       Content is king – Make your content unique and keyword-rich (not stuffed!). This will keep you in all of the search engine’s good graces and it will actually keep users coming back to your site (and maybe even linking to it!)

2.       Update your site regularly – Consistently updated content will keep Google – and your site visitors! – coming back time and time again.

3.       Links to your website – When other sites link to yours, you get a higher page ranking. You can get these links by doing a link exchange with sites that are complimentary to yours.  Only exchange with sites whose content is similar to yours. Avoid exchanging links with sites that have long link farm pages and make sure to put any links you’ve exchanged in relevant parts of your site rather than a general “links” page.

If you are concerned that your site may be employing some of these tactics, or if you want to learn more about how Alt Creative can help you improve your page rankings, contact us today!

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