Editor’s note: “Ask an SEO” is a weekly column by technical SEO expert Jenny Halasz. Come up with your hardest SEO question and fill out our form. You might see your answer in the next #AskanSEO post! Welcome to another installment of Ask an SEO! Today’s question comes from Guy in Wales, who asks:I run a photography business and have been gathering good reviews for my business over a few years. After I finish a job I send the client a list of about 4 links to review sites and ask them to complete a review for me. These may be Google, Yell, Scoot, and Freeindex, for instance.Clients are happy to do this and usually copy and paste the same review to each site. I also take a copy and pop it on my ‘Reviews’ page. I might also put it on another relevant page like one dedicated to the venue.My question is: Will Google penalize me for duplicate content for the review on my Google listing appearing on other review sites and for copying the … [Read more...] about Will Google Penalize Duplicate Content in Reviews?
A day after warning publishers against advertorials, will Google’s search team now have to penalize parts of its own company for running advertorials? Perhaps, and if so, it wouldn’t be the first time. It’s also another absurd chapter in Google’s war on paid links. Google Says: Advertorials, Beware! After news came out yesterday that Google had apparently penalized Interflora for running advertorials — and also reduced the PageRank values of many UK newspapers that carried these — Google finally blogged a general warning against such practices. From its post: Please be wary if someone approaches you and wants to pay you for links or “advertorial” pages on your site that pass PageRank. Selling links (or entire advertorial pages with embedded links) that pass PageRank violates our quality guidelines, and Google does take action on such violations But as Aaron Wall at SEO Book covers today, examples of Google running advertorials could put … [Read more...] about Will Google Penalize Chromebooks, Google Analytics, AdWords & Google+ For Using Advertorials?
Make no mistake. Plenty of sites — big brands included — willingly do things in an attempt to rank better on Google that go past SEO tactics that Google itself considers acceptable. However, there’s also no better poster child for how complicated and confusing Google’s rules can be than the fact that Google has had to punish itself with penalties over and over again. Below, a look back on times when Google took action against itself. FYI, this is a companion piece to our related story on Marketing Land today: 10 Big Brands That Were Penalized By Google. Be sure to also check that out. And now the list, counting backwards chronologically…. 5. Chrome & Paid Links One of Google’s big sins is when people buy links in hopes they’ll generate better Google rankings. However, Google found itself buying links as part of a campaign to promote its Chrome browser. The links were obtained as part of a video campaign that was run involving two different … [Read more...] about 5 Times Google Penalized Itself For Breaking Its Own SEO Rules
Recently, I had a client come to me with a very interesting Google penalty. They had made a few changes to their site, nothing major, mostly tweaks to usability and layout. After these changes, their site dropped in rank. Curious, I went through each of their changes, a short list. Moving a button? Not an issue. Condensing a couple pages, properly redirected? All fine. The only possible issue I could see was, as it turned out, their contact page. This client of mine had decided to be a little fancy with their contact page and put the information in a modal window. As you know, a modal window is hidden most of the time, and contact information contains links and keywords like their business name. The client thought, logically enough, that the presence of links and keywords in otherwise hidden content might earn them a penalty. To avoid that penalty, the client added a noindex entry for the page in their robots.txt. This, as it turns out, earned them a penalty anyway. It cleared up when … [Read more...] about Is Google Penalizing Websites With Disallowed Pages?
When Google’s Matt Cutts first announced the search engine would be penalizing a large guest blogging network, many people in the SEO industry instantly thought that it could possibly be MyBlogGuest, run by Ann Smarty, brand manager of Internet Marketing Ninjas. At the time, Smarty was pretty confident that MyGuestBlog wouldn’t be hit, primarily because it wasn’t a “network” and it wasn’t selling links. Today we took action on a large guest blog network. A reminder about the spam risks of guest blogging: http://t.co/rc9O82fjfn — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) March 19, 2014 However, Cutts announced today via Twitter that Google has taken down a guest blogging network, and sure enough, MyBlogGuest was the one hit. It no longer ranks on Google for branded terms. Smarty confirmed the penalty on Twitter. [Official] Even though #myblogguest has been against paying for links (unlike other platforms), @mattcutts team decided to penalize us… — … [Read more...] about Google Penalizes MyBlogGuest, a Guest Blog Network