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How to avoid Google Penalties

Google rankings are more important than ever. In fact, they have become so instrumental in the success of a business that if a Google penalty is incurred, it is proven to decrease placement in Google’s search rankings (and will almost certainly influence the volume of organic traffic to your website). This means a direct and adverse impact on your business. 

It is unfortunate that over the years, we at The Digital Studios have been witness to many negative examples of businesses wasting precious time and resources implementing next to useless SEO tactics. Tactics which don’t generate good results and even worse in some cases; naive and / or harmful techniques which will only lead to the penalisation of a  business.

What is a Google penalty?

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Google hates it (hates it) when we overuse keywords. Google will recognise when there are too many and a penalty will follow. A couple of basic rules to bear in mind when writing your content is firstly, to apply keywords only where they are needed and when it is appropriate to do so. Secondly, try to adopt a natural style when it comes to your narrative, so the wording on your website most accurately reflects you. A basic guideline on how many keywords are permitted? Well, keywords should only have a 2-3% (maximum) share of your website’s entire content.

Hidden links

All of the links that are on your site should be clear, evident and of benefit to website users. Something which is hidden is obviously going to be deemed as being suspicious. Never make the link the same colour as the background, for example.

Don’t buy links

Buying links will almost certainly earn you a penalty from Google and you should expect an official warning if you do decide to proceed. It’s a big no-no. The sites which sell the links will promise the earth (and they look pretty convincing too) but stay well away. If you buy paid links, even if they aren’t picked up immediately, you will eventually get caught and more than likely, penalised.

Links to suspicious sites

It’s not good to associate yourself with or link your website to another website that’s doing something illegally. Avoid.

Do not use Hidden Content

Don’t hide content in an attempt to “trick” Google into a higher site ranking. For example, matching your text with the background colour of the page. While people may think it helps their rankings, it will no doubt lead to a penalty. Be as transparent as you can with Google and ensure your website is populated with high-quality content only.

And finally…

Google dish out several penalties each day and each month – and many of these could have been wholly avoidable. If you are concerned in any way about your website content and whether or not you might be liable, we can help. We have solid experience of resolving Google penalties and can offer advice and / or in-depth assessment to help you avoid any potential landmines online.

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