I'm a newbie to internet marketing so please excuse the naive mistakes I've made (which I've started to realise). But I could do with some help
About a month ago I started building an authority site within a fitness niche targeted at the UK. I had very good quality articles (originals) written by a professional writer, and put together a good looking site with some adsense and amazon affiliate links. I don't believe the site is in anyway spammy and is pretty high quality (i think).
Two weeks ago I started ranking at the bottom of the first page for several of my target keywords, and then a week ago Saturday this moved up to position 4. Traffic was gradually increasing and I started to see some [modest] sales through my affiliate links. I held position three all through last week.
On Saturday the site fell out of the sky. It dropped to position 601 for most of my keywords. The site is still in the index and if I take a phrase from one of the articles and search for it, the article is returned in position one.
My feeling is this is because I've have backlinked the site to hell and I've been slapped by google.
When I look at it now I think I've been completely stupid. Over the last 4-6 weeks I've purchased:-
-12,000 links (profile and to my home page and a couple of other pages, and then
- 7,000 (x2) backlinks to one of my main articles
- 3,000 (x2) pyramid backlinks to another two aricles
- 100 edu backlinks to two of my key articles.
- Purchased 250 directory submissions
- 30 Yahoo Answers
- a fiverr gig to spin an article and submit to 1000 article directories.
- Bookmarking daily with soclaladr. (Bad Idea)
What I didn't do with any of the backlinks I purchased is mass ping them. I guess I'm looking for someone to confirm that backlinking has been the root cause of my fall from grace.
The other thing I wondered is whether the google panda update hit the uk on the weekend I have a friend who hadn't been doing anywhere near as much backlinking and his site has dropped 80% of its traffic (different niche) on Saturday.
Although the site has a good number of high quality articles I have maybe 4 posts which have been generated by wp-zonbuilder. So I'm wondering if the amazon item descriptions (that are generic could) be perceived as content spam by google.
I guess my options are now:
- Park the niche for now, and continue backlinking and adding more content over time. Not sure if it will ever recover. 6 months seems a long time.
- transfer the website to a new domain and start backlinking (sensibly) a fresh.
- Move on to another niche.
I want to move forward and learn from my mistakes without repeating them. But I could do with some advice...
Thanks in advance guys