All in the name of SEO, many sites are getting banned or penalized by Google, due to the bad SEO techniques introduce by many site owners. Usually there is no warning before been penalized by Google, all you can notice is a drastically drop down in your site traffic.
There are so many companies that claims to bring your site to Google first page on any searched keyword, though this might work for a short period of time, but will later be trashed out by Google. Getting high pagerank at any cost is really bad in terms of SEO, it's not something you can build overnight, but steady.
While there are many reasons why your site may get banned by Google, here are the worst tactics that can get you banned so easily and faster.
Designing your website to look like one thing in the eye of search engine and appears to be a different thing in the eye of visitor's is what cloaking is all about. This is strictly disallowed by Google and it's the most worst thing that can get you banned.
See what Google say about cloaking:
"The term "cloaking" is used to describe a website that returns altered web pages to search engines crawling the site. In other words, the web server is programmed to return different content to Google than it returns to regular users, usually in an attempt to distort search engine rankings. This can mislead users about what they'll find when they click on a search result. To preserve the accuracy and quality of our search results, Google may permanently ban you from our index any sites or site authors that engage in cloaking to distort their search rankings."
2. Duplicate content
Duplicating large amount of text on your page can get your site penalized, it doesn't matter if it's copied from another site or within your pages. Google don't like seeing duplicate content, and if any is found, it may leave a negative impact on your site performance. You can also be banned even if you owns the original copy of the content, that's why you need to keep an eye on your site content. You can do so by searching for some of your page text with quotation mark both at the start and end of the text. You can learn more about copyright infringement here.
3. Keyword stuffing
This is so offensive to both search engine and readers. Most website owners believe that the density of a keyword is the sure-fire way to rank their content in search results which leads many in repeating a certain word in their first paragraph. e.g "Buy valentine gift for your loved one's on valentine day. Celebrating valentine is awesome and you can get the best valentine gift for valentine day"
Come to think of it, this doesn't makes sense even in the eye of the readers, and if you are caught for such act, you will be penalized by search engine.
4. Bad neighbour
Linking to high reputable neighbours is not a bad idea, as it also gives you more exposure, but just because someone links to you doesn't obligate you to link back to them. Your site reputation will also be judge on the quality of the neighbour's you keep. Avoid linking to site that distribute trojans, virus, and also adult and gambling sites. Check your outbound links on regular basis and remove any spamming site in other not to affect your site.
5. Hiding text
Don't trick users by making your font color to blend with your site background by using the same color or using a very teeny tiny font, though it may be invisible to visitors but not to search engine robots.
Some are so tricky to the extent of using CSS to hide their site link in other to gain backlink if their content is been copied, but i can bet you that this will get you easily banned if it's spot by the search engine spiders.
6. Buying links
All in the name of SEO, most site owners have devalued their site in search results by investing in paid links, but what is the essence of investing in paid links if it doesn't generate you more revenue? This tactics works incredibly well, but you will get knocked-out from SERP's as soon as it is detected by search engine spiders. Having large quality backlinks is surest way of ranking high in search results, but make sure your links are build naturally and steadily in other not to be severely punished by Google.
7. Meta tags and Robots
If Google finds out that you are repeating same keyword in your meta tag, consider your site banned. This is also known as keyword stuffing or stacking. An example of a website that want to rank high for a particular keyword like "blogger" will be having this type of keyword in their meta tag:
< meta name="KEYWORDS" content="blog, blogger, blogging, bloggers, blogspot, BLOGS, BLOGGING, Blogger Tips, Blogger tricks, BLOGGER TUTORIALS, blogger template, blogger widgets" >
Using that type of keyword is very bad for your site health. Discovering the most frequently searched terms on the web allows devious webmasters to load up their META tags with these words even if they are completely irrelevant to their site. Always keep it simple and meaningful.
You can also block search engine robots from indexing your site by using wrong robots.txt file. Here is an example:
<meta name="ROBOTS" content="NOINDEX">
Using that type of meta tag will tell search engine robots to exclude your site from their index.
8. Automated Queries or Using Robots
Google don't support the use of software that send automated queries, check pagerank, or SEO software that claims to improve your pagerank overnight. Google hate automated queries, here is what they say about it:
"Sending automated queries consumes resources and includes using any software (such as WebPosition Gold) to send automated queries to Google to determine how a website or webpage ranks in Google search results for various queries. In addition to rank checking, other types of automated access to Google without permission are also a violation of our Webmaster Guidelines and Terms of Service."
There are also various tactics some webmasters use in duplicating content but change some few lines. Using robot to write content is a very bad idea. If you are caught for such act, then consider your site dissipated. It may seems to be a very tedious work to rack your brain and write a constructive content, but i can bet you that it will become unproblematic as time goes on.
9. Doorway pages
This are also known as gateway page, and they are design solely to rank high for targeted keywords, but leads you to another content. For instance, a blogger may provide a useful and unique content on a topic like "SEO tip" or "CSS tricks" and then link those article in the same series together. But a spammy doorway pages will optimized for SEO tips or CSS tricks and provide a bogus content on the landing page. This techniques are commonly used among webmasters but you have to detest from it.
10. Dummy Sites
This consist of setting up a base site then setting up several other sites (usually on free hosting) in other to redirect all visitors to the base site. The base site may contain worthless informations or content unrelated to the redirected pages. The redirect can be automatic, done with a meta refresh command or through other means such as the mouse moving while on the redirect page, or probably see a "click here" link that will redirect you to the base page. Google is so expert in detecting this kind of tactics, and if you are caught. Busted.
Always avoid techniques that intended to trick search engines and users. Optimize your site using clear navigation and providing quality content users will be willing to share. Sure you can appeal and recover if you are penalized, but the chances of getting back on the track is low and it takes a long run.
Have you be using any of this techniques? Which one did you employ? Have you be banned before? Hope you find this useful? We will like to know that in the comment.
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