Preparing Your Site for Penguin

Preparing Your Site for Penguin

April 18th, 2013

A new Penguin update is on the way and it is rumored that it will make last April’s ruthless Penguin update look like child’s play. If you're gearing up and wondering how you can avert penalties, here are seven ways to protect your site, or recover if you've already been hit.

 

1. Audit your Links Monthly
If you find spammy links, email the site and request for the link to be removed, and make sure you keep a documentation of this. You may need this information if you DO get penalized and have to file a reconsideration request.
 
2. What’s your Anchor Density?
High anchor density for money terms is one of the main indicators of SERP manipulation that leads to Penguin penalties. Every month, make sure you run an anchor density report and make sure you are under 15% for a money term. If you notice your density getting too high, quickly build noise or brand term links to dilute the percentages.
 
3. Link Ratios: What to Monitor, and Why they Matter
When google talks about Earned vs Unearned links, one of the ways they can algorithmically monitor these numbers is by looking at ratios such as:
  • Link Type: Image vs Text vs Mentions
  • Link Location: Paragraph vs Link List vs In Content vs Sidebar vs Header
  • Domain Theme: Business vs Computers vs Reference vs Portals vs News
  • Site Type: General vs Blog vs CMS vs Link Directory vs Social Network
If, for example, too many of the links come from Link Directories, this shows an imbalance. Try to build alternate links to create a healthy backlink profile.
 
4. Watch your Webmaster Tools account
Watching the links that Google displays in your account can help you find problematic links that Google is acknowledging are crawled in part of how your site is ranked.  Monitoring your webmaster account for your site’s health will make sure you address and minimize potential problems BEFORE they become penalties or result in a loss of rankings or traffic.
 
5. Create Google Analytics Alerts
By creating Intelligence Events Alerts, you can have Google Analytics notify you if your traffic has decreased or if something has changed.
 
6. Don’t Engage in Spammy Link Building!!!
Perhaps these links work for a little bit, but they WILL get you penalized.  If not now, it will happen in a future algorithmic update.
 
7. Build High Quality Links
One high value link is worth hundreds of low quality links. A handful of links from reputable sources can help a site’s rankings considerably. Focus instead on creating high value content assets, and the rewards will be tenfold, not just as your rankings increase but in getting your site safely into the rankings.
 

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