How to tell if your site has been penalized

16 replies
  • SEO
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Hi,

How exactly do you tell if your site has been penalized by Google. I know this is a somewhat vague question, but if you have been penalized by Google, is there any way to find out and is there any way to UNDO the penalty?

Thanks
#penalized #site
  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    site:www.your-domain.com

    site:your-domain.com

    What do you see when doing that Google search?

    If you get at least a single result for the above search, your not penalized.

    Assumes your not unknowingly blocking the search engines yourself.
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    • Profile picture of the author hobokook
      Ok thanks. I see my site. But what if my rankings have recently decreased A LOT. I've recently had a couple keywords on page 1, but they just dropped off to pages 3-5 due to that updated panda algorithm.

      I may have been caught since I used the same anchor text a lot in my keywords, but how do you recover from this?
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      • Profile picture of the author yukon
        Banned
        Originally Posted by hobokook View Post

        Ok thanks. I see my site. But what if my rankings have recently decreased A LOT. I've recently had a couple keywords on page 1, but they just dropped off to pages 3-5 due to that updated panda algorithm.

        I may have been caught since I used the same anchor text a lot in my keywords, but how do you recover from this?
        Ok, you see your pages in the site: search, so your not penalized. You'll know If Google slaps your site If you don't see anything searching site:.

        If you haven't done any major site changes (new theme, etc...) then check your external backlinks. The external backlinks have either dropped off, or they were weak to begin with & you just got lucky.

        Bulk up on high PR backlinks.

        Panda means nothing to me, the core of seo is still the same (keywords + anchor-text links) as it was years ago.
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        • Profile picture of the author Eleanor
          Originally Posted by yukon View Post

          Ok, you see your pages in the site: search, so your not penalized.
          This isn't true.

          There's a difference between being penalised and being de-indexed.


          Thanks
          Eleanor
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          • Profile picture of the author yukon
            Banned
            Originally Posted by bubbins1987 View Post

            This isn't true.

            There's a difference between being penalised and being de-indexed.


            Thanks
            Eleanor
            No there isn't.
            • The SERPs are not static.
            • 99% of the sites on the net are not static, meaning content pages/internal-links change over time.
            • Backlinks change.

            I've already told OP what to check, it's up to them If they want to rank for their keyword or not, just depends how bad they want it.
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            • Profile picture of the author Black Hat Cat
              Banned
              Originally Posted by yukon View Post

              No there isn't.
              Yes there is. JC Penny was penalized not too long ago, but they weren't de-indexed. They still showed up when you did a site:jcpenny.com search, but there's no doubt whatsoever that they were given a penalty.

              All site:yourdomain.com tells you is whether your site is indexed or not. It doesn't tell you whether you've been penalized. Sites are penalized everyday without being de-indexed. Sites also drop in rankings everyday that haven't been penalized.
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            • Profile picture of the author adam westrop
              Originally Posted by yukon View Post

              No there isn't.
              • The SERPs are not static.
              • 99% of the sites on the net are not static, meaning content pages/internal-links change over time.
              • Backlinks change.

              I've already told OP what to check, it's up to them If they want to rank for their keyword or not, just depends how bad they want it.
              Bubbins is right, you are wrong.

              I've dealt black hat before, site: still brings up site results ranking well..

              The correct procedure is:-

              sitename + keyword

              Common penalty is the + 5.

              What is likely though, is you have been downgraded due to Panda, or some links have dropped off etc.
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    • Profile picture of the author wiseteendad
      Yukon, thanks for the info. I'm sure this is a big noob question (which I am right now... apologies) but when I search for;
      "sitewww)wiseteendaddotcom" I get nothing, but when I search for;
      "site:wiseteendaddotcom" I get all my pages showing up in the search results.

      I'm assuming this is a problem and that I did something dumb... any help is appreciated!
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      • Profile picture of the author AfteraDream
        Originally Posted by wiseteendad View Post

        Yukon, thanks for the info. I'm sure this is a big noob question (which I am right now... apologies) but when I search for;
        "sitewww)wiseteendaddotcom" I get nothing, but when I search for;
        "site:wiseteendaddotcom" I get all my pages showing up in the search results.

        I'm assuming this is a problem and that I did something dumb... any help is appreciated!
        I got the same... site had a good rank initially after building some links but dissappeared for like a month now.. building more links to see if it gets fixed.
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  • Profile picture of the author Eleanor
    Hey,

    It sounds like you've been affected by the Google Panda Update.

    In order to recover you'll need to add more high quality content to your site as well as continue to build high quality backlinks to your site.

    You've made a good point about your anchor text. Try to vary your anchor text and use "click here" or "www.yoursite.com" as well as your keywords.

    It might take some time but as long as you continue to provide value to your site visitors by providing high quality content and relevant information, Google will finally see that you have changed your ways and will improve your SERPs over time.

    Hope that helps

    Thanks
    Eleanor
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    • Profile picture of the author hobokook
      Thanks Bubbins,

      So lets just say I do continue to build super high quality content towards my site. How long will it be before I SERP improve again?

      I know this is a vague question that can depend on a lot of variables, but lets just say on average.
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      • Profile picture of the author Eleanor
        Originally Posted by hobokook View Post

        Thanks Bubbins,

        So lets just say I do continue to build super high quality content towards my site. How long will it be before I SERP improve again?

        I know this is a vague question that can depend on a lot of variables, but lets just say on average.

        You've answered your own question I'm afraid -

        There isn't really an average because it's so different for every site. I will however say if you don't notice any increase in SERPs after 2-3 months of continuing to work then you might want to move on.

        Hope that helps

        Thanks
        Eleanor
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  • Profile picture of the author TryBPO
    Checking to see if you're deindexed:

    site:yourdomain.com

    Checking to see if you're penalized:

    "DOMAIN KEYWORDS IN QUOTES" yourdomain.com

    If you're not deindexed, but your site doesn't come up as the first or one of the very first results...you're penalized.
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  • Profile picture of the author Yeehaw
    If you're deindexed, you'll know. Your site wont appear in G at all. If you're penalized pay special attention to your link velocity.
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  • Profile picture of the author jep
    Mine got hit pretty bad also..not even in the top 1000 for my main keyword..I was top 1-2 for about two month..and then poof! until today it's gone..for more than 1 month now..I've been using drip feed article of 100 links everyday since then but still no sign..I've recently added a couple of new articles and maybe give it another month before I let it go..sad because it's a 1+ year domain that only recently got top spot..but that's IM life i guess..
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    • Profile picture of the author AfteraDream
      Originally Posted by jep View Post

      Mine got hit pretty bad also..not even in the top 1000 for my main keyword..I was top 1-2 for about two month..and then poof! until today it's gone..for more than 1 month now..I've been using drip feed article of 100 links everyday since then but still no sign..I've recently added a couple of new articles and maybe give it another month before I let it go..sad because it's a 1+ year domain that only recently got top spot..but that's IM life i guess..

      That's quite a lot of links... maybe lower the amount of daily links.. I wouldn't post as much.. maybe try some social bookmarking ones...
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