Negative SEO & Penguin Update
The most curious question being raised is that will negative SEO come into effect? Or does this Google Penguin update encourage negative SEO? The answer is yes!
So, what is negative SEO? These are activities which some competitors might want to do to your online presence. They can include all those that have been specifically pointed out in Google Penguin Update: All You Need To Know Part-1. So what happens is that some competitors might do automated link building on the keywords that your website is targeting so that Google’s new update, Penguin, considers it as spamming or violation of the ethics of practical SEO and ultimately bans or penalizes your website by either sandboxing or removing from search results.
How Can I Keep My Website Safe?
Now that we know negative SEO will come into effect and some unethical SEO’s will want to indulge into all those malpractices just to keep our website out of the way, how can we keep our website(s) safe? In other words, how do we fight Google’s Penguin Update?
Initiate a full level website audit to identify where your website presently stands. This will help you get a broad-spectrum idea of how things are and what to anticipate over the coming months.
Make sure your website is user-friendly and has an easy-to-use navigation. Focus on the user experience, instead of linking to everything all over the place.
If you are using WordPress or any other CMS, make sure your website is protected against spyware and malware. Make sure to install the latest updates to your content management system and to install only from trusted sources. If your site is ever attacked by Malware, contact your web host provider. They will need to clean your server from it. You should also check your computer for malware at that time. A great program to use is Malwarebytes.org; a free program you will find very handy.
Do not auto-approve links in the comments section of your website. Your website might link to adult or potentially dangerous websites if comments are auto-approved (Part of negative SEO attack). Make sure that all external links from your website are no-follow except for certain ones which have domain authority.
Keep track of your competitors. Make a list of your top competition, what their activities are, and, in general, a SWOT analysis. This will help you keep a bird’s eye view on your niche.
Monitor Back links
This is the most significant activity to keep the spotlight on. Utilize tools to keep an eye on your websites back links. Carefully examine which website is linking to you and in particular maintain track of how many back links you have. A sudden boost in amount of back links and links from unwanted websites indicates there is a negative SEO attack on your website! Another way to check this is to watch your bandwidth. Spamming robots will drop links in your comments, then drive tons of traffic to them to raise awareness of those links for their own gain. Not good! Stop them in their tracks. Remove those comments when the come in, and verify every comment and user who wishes to post a comment on your site.
Trusted Link building
Whenever you are link-building, make sure they are coming from trusted sources. Never comment or place a link to your website on a suspicious website or a website which has tons and tons of links. Quality is better than quantity; the Penguin update prefers quality.
Optimize your websites content for Google’s Semantic Search. (Semantic search seeks to improve search accuracy by understanding searcher intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in the searchable dataspace, whether on the Web or within a closed system, to generate more relevant results.) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semantic_search
So, in short semantic search is the association of different words with your target keywords. You do not want to do force your target keyword everywhere in your content. Instead use related search terms that will help make your content easier to find and index – semantic search. So the higher your website scores in semantic search, the higher it ranks in Google! Everything Natural!