Recover From a Google Penalty Using These 6 Resources
Has your website been penalized by Google? Recover from a Google penalty by using the following eight resources used to identify, evaluate and fix issues that are responsible for the website penalization.
A Google penalty can have a major negative impact on your business. Imagine if your website traffic dried up one day? It would be important to quickly identify the cause and take the necessary steps to fix the situation, right? The more equipped you are to handle the situation the faster you can recover your organic search traffic.
When a website is penalized it will typically trigger panic mode. When you are armed with the correct resources it is possible to recover and continue to move up in the organic search results. Use the following eight resources to recover from a Google penalty.
1. Google Webmaster Tools
This is the first resource you should turn to if you think your have been hit by a Google penalty. While most 3rd party tools are giving you a possible answer, Google Webmaster Tools is giving you a direct answer. If your website is not already connected to GWT then it would be a good idea to link it ASAP.
If Google has penalized your website there will be a notification in your dashboard detailing the manual action that has been handed down to your website. This gives you a direct answer without the guessing games. A manual penalty means you need to look into your link profile and website content and take the appropriate action to correct the problem.
2. Fetch As Googlebot
This is a feature of Google Webmaster Tools that allows you to see exactly how Google crawls your web pages and renders them in the search results. You can select from desktop or mobile rendering and you will be provided with the HTTP response of the URL, how Google views the page as opposed to how the web browsers render it, and the page download speed. If your URL is being blocked by a robots.txt command or has a redirect set you will quickly find out. This is also a great way to test the response time of your server. Slow response times can have a negative impact on your organic visibility.
3. Moz’s Google Algorithm Change History
Google is releasing algorithm refreshes as well as new updates all the time. It can be difficult to keep track of them all, and that’s why the Google Algorithm Change History resource by Moz is a great URL to bookmark and reference when you think you may have a penalty issue. The Penguin and Panda related updates are usually front page news on the SEO websites, but there are numerous smaller updates that can be responsible for traffic and ranking drops.
If you experience a sudden drop in organic traffic you can use this resource to see if there have been any confirmed updates. This list doesn’t include any speculation or “maybe” updates, as everything published here has been confirmed by Google as a new algorithm update or data refresh. Just understand that this is just a small sample of what really goes on behind the scenes. Google is constantly making adjustments, almost on a daily basis.
If you are hit with a penalty one of the first things you want to do is dive into your link profile. Majestic is one of the top link profile analyzers on the market and allows you to really get in there and see what is going on. This resource allows you to look at your anchor text diversity and also identify possible over optimization issues. Just remember that this is a 3rd party tool. Always use this data strictly as information to help you build your case, both for identifying the problem and putting together a solution.
Ahrefs is one of the most popular and widely used link analysis tools on the market. While we just mentioned Majestic above, it’s important to use several link analysis tools to get a good picture of your link profile. Not every resource will pull the same data and some links will show in some tools and not others.
This data is refreshed multiple times every hour, making it some of the freshest available link data available. You can use this tool the same way you would use Majestic. It’s just an additional 3rd party tool to use to pull data for analyzing.
6. Screaming Frog Crawler
This is a great tool that provides you with more information than just a link profile. Screaming Frog crawls your entire website and addresses several potential problems that could trigger a penalty, including duplicate content, broken links, redirects, thin content, etc.
If your website has thousands of pages a manual review would be close to impossible to perform. This is one very powerful crawler that can make even the largest sites manageable when it comes time to looking into potential penalty causes.
Don’t stress. Being hit by a Google penalty doesn’t have to ruin your long-term business. It’s possible to recover using the resources mentioned above. If you are penalized and are interested in our full service Google penalty removal service then contact us to discuss your particular situation. While not cheap, our Google penalty service is effective and designed to move your website back into the SERPs quickly.