EMD Penalty Recovery and Prevention (case study)

by Becker13 Banned
105 replies
  • SEO
  • |
Hey guys, wanted to share this..

I currently run a fairly large SEO corporate consulting business and also run a large SEO authority site with a ton of services..

In short it is my job to know exactly what is up with Google for my clients and subscribers

With that being said, I have been doing EXTREMELY extensive research on this new EMD update by comparing EMDs that got hit to EMDs that lasted. (This comes from my own surviving sites and friends whose sites got smashed)

Here are some of the big things that stood out to me between sites that got hit and those that didn't

- Not all of the sites that got hit were EMDs. However all of the sites that got hit had the main keyword in the domain name.

What sites that got hit did all have in common is the main page on the sites (Ex: zetaclearreview.com) was blatantly targeting the keyword the domain was made to target.

The keyword was EXACTLY in the title, description, and meta tags. It was also in the content, alt tags, and with ALL of the hit sites above a 4% density

However sites that did not get hit were missing the EXACT keyword in the title, description. (I do this because having a EMD is blatant and powerful enough) They also did not have the exact keyword in every image alt tag, and a >2% density in the content

I truly believe this EMD update was an extension of Penguins on page targets. Basically if your home page is blatantly going after a keyword and the domain has that EXACT keyword...boom penguin activation


-On top of this the sites that got penalized had 30-40% main keyword anchor text profiles. For example

Zeta clear review
Best zeta clear review
Easy Zeta clear review

(adding best and easy to your keyword does not make your SEO any less obvious)

The sites that did not get hit had around >20%. HOWEVER, they also had many relevant keywords like. For example

Acne review
cure acne
Review site

Etc


-Here are on page factors almost all sites that did not get hit had

Youtube video

3+ pictures

Usage of h1, h2, h3 fonts

Less than 2 affiliate links

Cloaked affiliate links

Links to major authority sites (for example if I am in the health niche I ALWAYS link out medicine.net and what not)

>2% keyword density

Somewhat intelligent internal linking

10+ pages


(Of course the sites that did get hit had the opposite)


-Here is some link patterns/signals sites that did not get hit had

-Social signals (Every one of my sites has 1000+ retweets and likes)
-Youtube video links
-Facebook fan page (with fake fans and likes)
-Many no follow links

Of course sites that got hit had the opposite. I also did not see any correlation between backlinks and the penalty besides anchor text variation and very few no follow links

Sites That INCREASED In Rank

On top of this, I am sure some of you saw some EMDs go up in rank

The ones of mine that did this have
-Youtube, twitter, facebook pages/channels
-Social signals
-Low exact keyword onpage targeting
-More links to authority sites than to affiliate sites on page

Also think about it...There is NO authority quality site on the web that links to affiliate sites heavily on their home pages. This is because authority sites aim to keep traffic.

Thats a pretty big indicator right there


Finally a very helpful tip on what KILLS it right now

I am not the biggest EMD guy to begin with. Here is how I snipe keywords much more effetively

What I have been doing the past few months is buying PR 5 domains with a good link profile. This means

-10k + incoming links

-Indexed and not penalized

-When you type in the domains keyword, or its name (houston264live.com) it shows up with the top spot domination (when google gives the site the top spot and then show additional pages in a 4 block formation)

Go to Google and type in "Source Wave" for an example. My site has this.

This means not only is the site indexed, but Google actually likes the site

This will run you anywhere from 200-500 bucks. You can also do this with a PR 3 for about 50-90. I also like to do this with pr7s but I have a larger SEO budget that most


I then convert the PR 5 to an authority style site. I make the home page broadly about a niche (acne)

I then make pages on the site targeting keywords (zeta clear review). I basically can rank for anything competitive in 1-2 months and rank almost instantly for non competitive terms


This works so well because

A) You get the power of ALL the links the original site had AND get the trust that comes with PR (PR will not increase your rank alone, it just lets you be more aggressive with your linking)

B)Your go totally under Googles "crap site" radar because your site resembles a authority (somewhat)

C) When you add backlinks, the anchor text profile is already EXTREMELY desaturated because you have 10k links already pointing at the site... You can basically bomb your pages with 100% anchor text links


Just a quick tip for anyone whose frusterated with this stuff!


Hope this helped!
-Becker
#case #emd #penalty #prevention #recovery #study
  • Profile picture of the author Streamline
    Thanks Becker. I'm on your list and you always have something of value to add!
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
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      Originally Posted by Streamline View Post

      Thanks Becker. I'm on your list and you always have something of value to add!
      Thanks dude, love hearing stuff like this
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  • Profile picture of the author grantatrade2011
    Thanks for thi big sharing, i am little bit hitted with this update
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  • Profile picture of the author ChrisMoon
    Thanks Becker13 a great post. Informative and a helpful in these troubled times (just lost 20 EMD sites).
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
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      Originally Posted by ChrisMoon View Post

      Thanks Becker13 a great post. Informative and a helpful in these troubled times (just lost 20 EMD sites).
      Yeah its scary stuff, I am pretty much sticking to the PR authority site pattern for now...but many of my EMDS are still going strong
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  • Profile picture of the author CletusVanDamme
    Thanks for the info - good stuff... I've been lurking at this forum for awhile and a bunch of my sites have been hit by this update. Do you have any info on recovery time if you make any changes - for example changing the main title on the home page to something different that the domain name - also changing the home page meta info to something else without the EMD name in it?

    Thanks...
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by CletusVanDamme View Post

      Thanks for the info - good stuff... I've been lurking at this forum for awhile and a bunch of my sites have been hit by this update. Do you have any info on recovery time if you make any changes - for example changing the main title on the home page to something different that the domain name - also changing the home page meta info to something else without the EMD name in it?

      Thanks...
      Hey I have not found a fast recovery method. I also VERY rarely try to revive sites.

      I am VERY VERY good at keyword research, and rank in most of my niches in 24 hours to a week. Because of this I usually just make a new site instead of playing the "Google revival" rain dance.
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      • Profile picture of the author Palaecro
        Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

        Hey I have not found a fast recovery method. I also VERY rarely try to revive sites.

        I am VERY VERY good at keyword research, and rank in most of my niches in 24 hours to a week. Because of this I usually just make a new site instead of playing the "Google revival" rain dance.

        This actually says a lot. I've spent months since Penguin trying to save one of my sites, after the EMD revision my traffic dropped to 1/3rd and it must have been the best traffic because I haven't had a sale since!

        I'll be following your video course to see how to get some new same niche sites up and running.
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        • Profile picture of the author Becker13
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Palaecro View Post

          This actually says a lot. I've spent months since Penguin trying to save one of my sites, after the EMD revision my traffic dropped to 1/3rd and it must have been the best traffic because I haven't had a sale since!

          I'll be following your video course to see how to get some new same niche sites up and running.

          Yeah revival is no fun
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  • Profile picture of the author Geekgirl01
    Big thanks to you for the heads up......my site is new and not yet indexed so I may have to check over a few things you mentioned here.
    And thannks for sharing this with us
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
    Beck if Google were targeting the on page factors you claim then the effect would have been far more dramatic than what we saw. I know lots of Imers think the sky just fell but it would be far worse if Google were targeting keywords in title and H1. Thats a standardized practice in SEO and yes ton loads of sites that have that are doing fine

    I know people (particularly SEOs) want to jump in after an update and think they have the skinny but no one can know what is in a algo change three days afterwards. There is no such thing as extremely extensive research in three days. Goodness you can have sites still moving around even now.

    Rushing to come to conclusions before you have time to sift data will lead to dead wrong practices going forward. Plus several of the factors listed are unlikely to have much to do with it
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

      Beck if Google were targeting the on page factors you claim then the effect would have been far more dramatic than what we saw. I know lots of Imers think the sky just fell but it would be far worse if Google were targeting keywords in title and H1. Thats a standardized practice in SEO and yes ton loads of sites that have that are doing fine

      I know people (particularly SEOs) want to jump in after an update and think they have the skinny but no one can know what is in a algo change three days afterwards. There is no such thing as extremely extensive research in three days. Goodness you can have sites still moving around even now.

      Rushing to come to conclusions before you have time to sift data will lead to dead wrong practices going forward. Plus several of the factors listed are unlikely to have much to do with it
      Your right

      This is all of course "assumptions"

      Just what I have found though. I am sure there is so many other things going on and some of these things might be totally irrelevant. But I am willing to bet a few of them play a big role in this
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    • Profile picture of the author Geekgirl01
      Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

      Beck if Google were targeting the on page factors you claim then the effect would have been far more dramatic than what we saw. I know lots of Imers think the sky just fell but it would be far worse if Google were targeting keywords in title and H1. Thats a standardized practice in SEO and yes ton loads of sites that have that are doing fine

      I know people (particularly SEOs) want to jump in after an update and think they have the skinny but no one can know what is in a algo change three days afterwards. There is no such thing as extremely extensive research in three days. Goodness you can have sites still moving around even now.

      Rushing to come to conclusions before you have time to sift data will lead to dead wrong practices going forward. Plus several of the factors listed are unlikely to have much to do with it
      I think personally what he has said makes clear sense.
      There is a reason why som EMD's got hit and some didn't....those who clearly overdid it with the keyword in every aspect surely would be a target as thats not what google class as natural.

      Ive seen quite a few EMD's that haven't moved from the #1 spot and going by the looks of it, they didnt over do it
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  • Profile picture of the author lutherlars
    Three days is deffo not enough time to figure this out. Look at this example Becker which debunks a lot of your theories. From the dog nich:
    Glucosamine for Dogs : Reviews of Canine Glucosamine Joint Supplements
    Site is not mind by the way.
    Ranks well, has very high keyword density and Amazon links.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by lutherlars View Post

      Three days is deffo not enough time to figure this out. Look at this example Becker which debunks a lot of your theories. From the dog nich:
      Glucosamine for Dogs : Reviews of Canine Glucosamine Joint Supplements
      Site is not mind by the way.
      Ranks well, has very high keyword density and Amazon links.
      There are always exception to the rule

      Not out to prove anything or say THIS IS HOW ITS DONE NOW

      This is just what I found after looking at about 50 sites that got hit and those that survived.

      I also believe that a lot of the VERY crappiest sites survived. It was was the in between sites that got tanked.

      The only 2 sites of mine that got hit were in that range. Some of my most horrible sites still reign supreme though.
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  • Profile picture of the author adamcm
    So if we wanted to target a page on Zeta Clear review, would it be best to have the url structure something like this: sitename.com/zeta-clear, and name the title "Zeta Clear Review", or would it be better to keep the URL structure and then name the Title/H1/Description to not include these keywords?
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by adamcm View Post

      So if we wanted to target a page on Zeta Clear review, would it be best to have the url structure something like this: sitename.com/zeta-clear, and name the title "Zeta Clear Review", or would it be better to keep the URL structure and then name the Title/H1/Description to not include these keywords?
      Ive always had tremendous success making a niche type site with a non blog home page. I then collect a bunch of very uncompetitive niche related keywords and a few competitive.

      I then link to the pages on my site that snipe these keywords. That always seems to be fair play in Googles eyes.

      I also make truly awesome authority type sites that get a lot of return traffic once they rank...Might also have something to do with it
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      • Profile picture of the author adamcm
        Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

        Ive always had tremendous success making a niche type site with a non blog home page. I then collect a bunch of very uncompetitive niche related keywords and a few competitive.

        I then link to the pages on my site that snipe these keywords. That always seems to be fair play in Googles eyes.

        I also make truly awesome authority type sites that get a lot of return traffic once they rank...Might also have something to do with it
        Sorry don't quite follow, probably my issue .

        My thought from what I gather in the OP was that you don't want to have the exact keyword you are targeting as the URL, Title, H1, and in the description. So if you wanted to build a page on your website named "zeta clear review", would it be better to avoid optimizing in one (or more) of those 4 areas (URL, title, H1, Desc)?

        I am not sure what you mean by non blog home page. I assume you just mean a static front page?

        Thanks again!
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        • Profile picture of the author Becker13
          Banned
          Originally Posted by adamcm View Post

          Sorry don't quite follow, probably my issue .

          My thought from what I gather in the OP was that you don't want to have the exact keyword you are targeting as the URL, Title, H1, and in the description. So if you wanted to build a page on your website named "zeta clear review", would it be better to avoid optimizing in one (or more) of those 4 areas (URL, title, H1, Desc)?

          I am not sure what you mean by non blog home page. I assume you just mean a static front page?

          Thanks again!
          Yes. A static home page. The only people who should be making blogs are bloggers
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  • Profile picture of the author YellowGreenMedia
    The update is only 3 days old and you have all the answers on how someone can recover... please, that is impossible as the update isn't even finished yet..

    Do you work at Google, if not then your whole OP is pure speculation... (My guess is that this is a lame attempt to get yourself new readers/clients)


    It was fun to read, but i wouldn't go this route just yet.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by YellowGreenMedia View Post

      The update is only 3 days old and you have all the answers on how someone can recover... please, that is impossible as the update isn't even finished yet..

      Do you work at Google, if not then your whole OP is pure speculation... (My guess is that this is a lame attempt to get yourself new readers/clients)


      It was fun to read, but i wouldn't go this route just yet.
      Hmm multiple times I say this is speculation on what I found. If you can highlight anywhere where I say

      THIS IS FACT AND YOU WILL RECOVER 100% FOR SURE

      I will give you mucho post thanks
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      • Profile picture of the author YellowGreenMedia
        Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

        Hmm multiple times I say this is speculation on what I found. If you can highlight anywhere where I say

        THIS IS FACT AND YOU WILL RECOVER 100% FOR SURE

        I will give you mucho post thanks

        I guess i keep missing that then

        But lets start with your title "emd penalty recovery prevention case study" really a case study? i don't see no case study just your opinion based on your data that we all have top belief you have...

        In the OP you never mention the words speculation, (at least i can't find it) just when people start telling you that it is way to early to draw any conclusions you post that indeed it is speculation.

        Don't get me wrong your info makes sense but that did it also on the 30th of September, and to me it looks like you tried to sell your way off as "the" system to recovery.... which it isn't, or maybe it is but nobody knows right now....

        Dave
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  • Profile picture of the author 36burrows
    Geez, someone is just posting his early research findings and people get all butt-hurt.

    Fk them I say.
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    • Profile picture of the author ttomp13
      2 of my emds were hit, 2 were not.

      Like you said, I think this was just another over-optimization penalty
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  • Profile picture of the author nik0
    Banned
    Good point about building the site on a PR5 domain, something that I'm going to do soon.

    Affiliate links are definitely a killer as well, none of my local clients have been affected by this update.
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  • Profile picture of the author Make Money Ninja
    Becker, virtually everything you say is on-point and i agree with virtually everything that comes out of your mouth.

    Good to see a MMO guy who is actually teaching people what actually works and actually provides considerable value.

    Take care dude!
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    Thanks Becker13. You're bang on in that worst affected this time are middle of the road sites. They're not authority sites, but neither are they crappy junk.

    My non-EMD's were worst hit. Google has been after them for a while. I no longer even rank for my own product name (and we're talking about a real software download product that I wrote).

    A couple of my 2011 niche sites were smashed. They were good sites (built post-Panda), but at the end of the day they're just review type sites. Google still hasn't got things right. Instead of the Wordpress sites and other stuff you used to see for a query I once ranked for, now you get the same membership site show up 15 times in the same 3 pages of results!

    It's very hard to get your Google rankings back. You're right in that it's better to build a new site. My only comfort is that eventually Yahoo and other search engines bring in plenty of visitors.
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  • Profile picture of the author salesfeed
    Had some questions on this - from what i can understand the following is now bad in Google eyes

    keyword domain + keyword title + keyword h1

    now if the website had this structure as an example -

    fix whatever + keyword | fix whatever | keyword by fix whatever

    fix whatever in this case is the brand name
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by salesfeed View Post

      Had some questions on this - from what i can understand the following is now bad in Google eyes

      keyword domain + keyword title + keyword h1

      now if the website had this structure as an example -

      fix whatever + keyword | fix whatever | keyword by fix whatever

      fix whatever in this case is the brand name
      The best advice I could give is that SUPER micro and Medium micro niche sites are being targeted by Google right now.

      Either create a onslaught of tiny niches sites to quickly bank OR start making more broad long term sites that target keywords with inner pages and NOT the home page
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      • Profile picture of the author Carl Brown
        Microniche site heavily focused on ONE keyword onsite with thousands of backlinks using that term as the anchor text will be hit.

        It'll mean more work to look as natural as possible. This type of emd is dead. I think a emd site can recover, but you'll need to add backlinks based of lots of LSI and unrelated anchor text
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      • Profile picture of the author adamcm
        Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

        The best advice I could give is that SUPER micro and Medium micro niche sites are being targeted by Google right now.

        Either create a onslaught of tiny niches sites to quickly bank OR start making more broad long term sites that target keywords with inner pages and NOT the home page
        On one of my sites, I found that a few of my inner pages were hit but the main domain was not. The 4 inner-pages all had this in common:

        - keyword in domain, so sitename.com/key1-key2-key3
        - keyword in title, so "key1 key2 key 3 - blah blah blah
        - keyword in description, so "blah blah blah key1 key2 key3 blah blah blah"
        - keyword in H1 (in my wordpress theme this is the Post title)

        The inner page that seemed to survive had 0 backlinks to it. The others don't seem to be anywhere. But again the main domain was fine using the exact same format as above. It however was not an EMD.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    That list is just random, especially most of that on-page stuff.

    Nice imagination. :rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author WildGale
    My EMDs were not hit in this update and they do fit the list provided here by Becker. Just FYI.
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    • Profile picture of the author Carl Brown
      Not hit this time after learning my lesson in April. If your site looks like an artificial creation it's built on a house of cards and will be taken down.
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  • Profile picture of the author Fernando1954
    After buying these high PR sites have you had problems with google devalue the PR after the re-registration to you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Fernando1954 View Post

      After buying these high PR sites have you had problems with google devalue the PR after the re-registration to you.
      No..Thats why I look at the backlink profile. If it has low backlinks it usually devalues.

      I also look at the trust factor (left that out)
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  • Profile picture of the author kiliki
    Thanks! It's still early and a lot of inconclusive data out there. This is a great gap filler to fill in the "what about..." questions.

    Appreciate the effort you put in sharing this!
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    • Profile picture of the author winston
      All my EMD's went straight to the top example: Best Atlanta Dentist "bestatlantadentist.com" (this not my site or keywords just an example) but I was targeting keywords like Atlanta Dentist, Atlanta Dentists and stayed at #1 and #2 for those keywords. But now the sites can only be found for the term Best Atlanta Dentist. They disappeared from other pages all together, not just several pages back for other the keywords.
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      • Profile picture of the author Becker13
        Banned
        Originally Posted by winston View Post

        All my EMD's went straight to the top example: Best Atlanta Dentist "bestatlantadentist.com" (this not my site or keywords just an example) but I was targeting keywords like Atlanta Dentist, Atlanta Dentists and stayed at #1 and #2 for those keywords. But now the sites can only be found for the term Best Atlanta Dentist. They disappeared from other pages all together, not just several pages back for other the keywords.
        Whats that done to the traffic?
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        • Profile picture of the author winston
          Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

          Whats that done to the traffic?

          The sites that had the keyword or phrase EMD I'm after the traffic have not seen much change. The site like the one I'm referring to in my post with other keywords as the main keywords targeted has dropped significantly.
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      • Profile picture of the author Watch Store
        You say you buy a pr5 domain, and you then convert it to a niche site. Would you buy a domain name that has nothing to do with your niche site and then what do you do re-direct it to a new domain name or use the old domain name.
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        • Profile picture of the author Becker13
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Watch Store View Post

          You say you buy a pr5 domain, and you then convert it to a niche site. Would you buy a domain name that has nothing to do with your niche site and then what do you do re-direct it to a new domain name or use the old domain name.
          Honestly I just make the on page reflect it. Domain name only matters so much
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  • Profile picture of the author Klondike1985
    Cutts said this will impact 0.6% of English-US queries to a noticeable degree.
    That isn't much if you ask me, but enough for some webmasters to consider what Google didn't like about their sites. Like
    ...the change aims to target low quality sites that might be riding on on the basis of exact matching.
    Source:
    searchengineland.com/low-quality-exact-match-domains-are-googles-next-target-134889
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  • Profile picture of the author James-
    1 of my 5 pager sniper sites got hit too. Difference was it wasn't an EMD, but branded.
    Admittedly, the content wasn't amazing, and there wasn't much of it, but grammatically, it was certainly good enough (written by a native UK writer)

    The homepage had a variety of links, the brand being the most, and the rest of the anchors varied dramatically. No idea why this one got slapped tbh.
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  • Profile picture of the author roger h
    thanks for the post, and the video series at source-wave..real good.
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  • Profile picture of the author blend
    Nice post, thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author Green Moon
    Thanks, Becker. A few of my EMDs were hit and a few were not. I don't detect the pattern that you did, but it is early and I will certainly keep your points in mind.

    Despite a few others jumping all over your early observations, I love detailed posts like yours because they provide things to look for.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
    LSI is more important than ever since this update. (especially in your meta/description tags) You only have to perform some basic searches in Google to see evidence of this.

    ALL of the EMD's that I've checked that are still holding in the number 1 spots have squeaky clean link profiles, and are built for humans.

    Humans! Go figure. :rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author John34
    About buying PR5 domain, do you buy any good PR5 domain and then set up blog on that or you look for domain related to niche?
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by John34 View Post

      About buying PR5 domain, do you buy any good PR5 domain and then set up blog on that or you look for domain related to niche?
      I set up a blog on it!
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      Originally Posted by John34 View Post

      About buying PR5 domain, do you buy any good PR5 domain and then set up blog on that or you look for domain related to niche?
      It would work better if you have a domain related to that niche but it's not necessary. It won't be easy to find PR5 domains that are relevant to your niche.

      One tip I can give you though, make sure most links use the domainname or url as anchor, it makes no sense to have a domain where it's all anchor txt's about horses when your site is about pancakes.
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      • Profile picture of the author Becker13
        Banned
        Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

        It would work better if you have a domain related to that niche but it's not necessary. It won't be easy to find PR5 domains that are relevant to your niche.

        One tip I can give you though, make sure most links use the domainname or url as anchor, it makes no sense to have a domain where it's all anchor txt's about horses when your site is about pancakes.
        Exactly, forgot to mention that! Thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author jfambrini
    My site was hit badly on all its major keywords and i was on page 2 and 3 now am back on page 1 but on bottom while i was number 1. Have returned to top 5 on 25% of the searches. Traffic is now almost half so it hurts but it seems that Google went overboard in first attempt and is easing but not fully.
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    • Profile picture of the author STLSEO
      Great info! Social signals are becoming more and more crucial when trying to acquire higher rankings.
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    • Profile picture of the author RajSrivastav
      As I read from various site, Google penalizes only Low quality or Spammy EMD sites. If i build a site with My target keyword and posts new content also build quality links and following Google guidelines. How can Google Hit my site with EMD Update?
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  • Profile picture of the author The Oilman
    Becker13:

    At one point you said something about sniping inner pages... what did you mean by this?

    Did you mean if youhave a site on dog food, and you have a page on Organic Puppy Chow, would you put an internal link as Organic Puppy Chow pointing to the Organic Puppy Chow page?
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    • Profile picture of the author Valuable Solos
      Becker, can you answer this question please?

      Originally Posted by The Oilman View Post

      Becker13:

      At one point you said something about sniping inner pages... what did you mean by this?

      Did you mean if youhave a site on dog food, and you have a page on Organic Puppy Chow, would you put an internal link as Organic Puppy Chow pointing to the Organic Puppy Chow page?
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  • Profile picture of the author gpwilson
    Thanks for sharing such an important analysis with all of us.
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  • Profile picture of the author boxoun
    Matches my early assumptions. Great detailed post that offers some things to consider.
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  • Profile picture of the author TwinCities
    Hi Becker,

    Thanks for your insight and comments regarding google latest changes.
    You mentioned one of the factors that sites that did not get hit was +10 pages.
    When you say +10 pages, were you referring to +10 pages of real content or +10 pages in total including about, contact, etc.?

    Also if you have a really great niche that has been profitable, should I wait it out to see what kind of changes that can be made or should I start over with an aged non-EMD domain?

    Thanks
    Chris
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by TwinCities View Post

      Hi Becker,

      Thanks for your insight and comments regarding google latest changes.
      You mentioned one of the factors that sites that did not get hit was +10 pages.
      When you say +10 pages, were you referring to +10 pages of real content or +10 pages in total including about, contact, etc.?

      Also if you have a really great niche that has been profitable, should I wait it out to see what kind of changes that can be made or should I start over with an aged non-EMD domain?

      Thanks
      Chris
      Id start a new aged domain...It is all about the long term!
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  • Profile picture of the author Chucky
    Well... there must be a complex formula behind all this that takes like 200 factors in to consideration, but I agree it's an overall over-optimization penalty that takes both on-page and off-page factors into consideration.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Chucky View Post

      Well... there must be a complex formula behind all this that takes like 200 factors in to consideration, but I agree it's an overall over-optimization penalty that takes both on-page and off-page factors into consideration.
      Yep...Eager to see what our people find out
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      • Profile picture of the author andrej
        I have a question regarding the following from your website:

        On Page Reward Triggers and Penalty Avoidance

        -Cloaked affiliate links. This means their is a redirect placed on links. There are several ways to do this. I just download a 301 redirect plug in, place a redirect on a page, and link to that page.
        Does it mean if I don't cloak the affiliate links on my website and my affiliate link looks like e.g. http://www.company.com/track/code/link1 I can get my website penalized? I don't cloak the affiliate links on my website at all. Should I rather cloak them? If yes, can I do it using the .htaccess redirect?
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        • Profile picture of the author nik0
          Banned
          Originally Posted by andrej View Post

          I have a question regarding the following from your website:

          Does it mean if I don't cloak the affiliate links on my website and my affiliate link looks like e.g. http://www.company.com/track/code/link1 I can get my website penalized? I don't cloak the affiliate links on my website at all. Should I rather cloak them? If yes, can I do it using the .htaccess redirect?
          I would definitely NOT do that, just leave it as it is.

          Most people with non EMD's that tanked all had those redirection scripts for their affiliate links.
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  • @Becker13,

    You have concluded very quickly and then came to say it all is assumptions. Everyone is free to assume.

    There are EMD sites that are 100% opposite of what you concluded and are still ranking #1. So it proves all your assumptions are wrong.

    P.S.
    Have you studied mathematics? I believe you understand what I mean?

    Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author StevenUK
    Becker, I have reading up on this new Algorithm for days now, after some of my high earning sites tanked by Google.

    Your posting here is by FAR the most valuable I have read on this subject.

    Thank you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by StevenUK View Post

      Becker, I have reading up on this new Algorithm for days now, after some of my high earning sites tanked by Google.

      Your posting here is by FAR the most valuable I have read on this subject.

      Thank you.
      Ha no problem!
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      • Profile picture of the author salesfeed
        I think the point about exact is correct especially for local geographic - example is blue widgets city

        If domain name has blue widget
        Title has blue widgets city and no other words in title
        Meta description has blue widgets city phrase exact match

        You will get hit in 5/10 cases from my research in traffic and sales made.

        Some of our sites did not get hit possibly because search traffic and competition is low or not registered or the domain name was especially long

        Maybe its just me but practically every 3 word geo search shows this trend.

        I noticed if you search x service city you hardly ever find x service city in both title and meta
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  • Profile picture of the author illianafrazer
    It is always good to hear when people speak with real data in hand. SEO's in fact must learn to use forums to share statistics after a major update.
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  • Profile picture of the author HeadStartSEO
    Thank you for sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author markus3000
    Have a feeling low bounce rate and time on site seem to be factors as well.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by markus3000 View Post

      Have a feeling low bounce rate and time on site seem to be factors as well.
      I do too, theres no way this is not looked at now
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  • Profile picture of the author TigerRaging
    Thanks for the insightful post dude, always have something good!
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  • Profile picture of the author yohanaton
    Thanks... Great info & great to hear diff approaches...
    Best,
    Y
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  • Profile picture of the author tangosdad
    As it turns out there was much more going on than EMDs... but then we kind of felt that anyway didn't we?

    Forceful Panda Update Confirmed on September 27th

    Google Panda Update 20 Released, 2.4% Of English Queries Impacted
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by markus3000 View Post

      Have a feeling low bounce rate and time on site seem to be factors as well.
      Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

      I do too, theres no way this is not looked at now
      There is one big problem with that idea. Only a very small percentage of websites out there use Google Analytics.

      Google does not have this information for the vast majority of websites.

      Highly doubt it is playing any significant role at all. I've seen too many websites with bad bounce rates and time on site still with excellent rankings. I've seen too many websites with great bounce rates and time on site with horrible rankings.

      The only bounce rate I think Google is using is when someone clicks on search result and immediately comes back to the SERP and chooses another result. This would be a signal that the first result did not necessarily meet their need or answer their query.
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      • Profile picture of the author Becker13
        Banned
        Originally Posted by MikeFriedman View Post

        There is one big problem with that idea. Only a very small percentage of websites out there use Google Analytics.

        Google does not have this information for the vast majority of websites.

        Highly doubt it is playing any significant role at all. I've seen too many websites with bad bounce rates and time on site still with excellent rankings. I've seen too many websites with great bounce rates and time on site with horrible rankings.

        The only bounce rate I think Google is using is when someone clicks on search result and immediately comes back to the SERP and chooses another result. This would be a signal that the first result did not necessarily meet their need or answer their query.
        Yes but Google can see where traffic goes

        Now I am no conspiracy theorist, but they have to be watching something
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  • Profile picture of the author aadi144
    Hi Becker,
    I have read about EMD reviews and lot of people are saying they were hit by this update although the percentage was not too high but i guess it was just a start of the new blame game.
    You have provided a useful information about EMD update and who are affected with this and who are not.Appreciate your study on this update.
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  • Profile picture of the author ashishkakran
    nice information for sharing Becker
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  • Profile picture of the author seoravi
    Great tips, But I think latest EMD update only effects those websites that are over optimize
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  • Profile picture of the author Acetztech
    Great advice on EMD. Super Like!
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  • Profile picture of the author enterscope
    I've invested in several exact-match domains lately and have always liked to use them because I feel like Google has no choice but to give some benefit to owning that phrase.

    Of course there has been some misuse of EMDs and Google has lowered there value which is unfortunate. However, I believe Google will just reward other Good SEO practices in its place like social sharing and contextual backlinks.
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  • Profile picture of the author fortony
    To say Google is penalizing is stretching it. Many companies have EMD and often those with EMD have the best info for the search. They cannot penalize for it without hurting results.

    Far more likely, it is simply the fact that they are giving far less for EMD. It used to provide a nice little boost in my opinion, now its very little. Not surprisingly, this is generally killing the smaller, EMD sites.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alisha1
    Actually I have submitted a thread regarding EMD a little bit ago but you have cleared my all doubt. Highly appreciated!
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    Nice to see that Google have finally admitted this is more than an EMD update.

    I'm struggling to work out why some of my sites were hit, but others survived. It's not really about quality - worst hit were my authority type sites, whereas sites I don't know so much about did OK.

    Once again, my larger sites were worst affected. So much for building authority sites!

    I'm running a new experiment by taking all the ads off one of my sites to see if that helps.

    But I think content itself is the problem in my case - I've never been able to recover from one of these updates.

    I think bounce rate is a factor, but they'll be benchmarking your site against competitors. This is a great way of measuring site quality. It would work brilliantly in the dating niche, because crappy blogs have a bounce rate of 70%+, but real dating sites a bounce rate of ~40% (plus much higher page views/session).

    This update hasn't improved search results much though. I did one query and the same crappy site appears 15 times in the first 3 pages of results.
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  • Profile picture of the author danilion55
    Hey just wanted to ask if i create EMDs.blogspot.com now and work in it will eemd rule penalize it in future or not
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by danilion55 View Post

      Hey just wanted to ask if i create EMDs.blogspot.com now and work in it will eemd rule penalize it in future or not
      i would drop the 9 dollars and get a real website
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  • Profile picture of the author markwilson4074
    Should we keep buying EMDs (long ones too) and making websites with quality content to expect page 1 SERPs.
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  • Profile picture of the author SEO Haven
    Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

    Not all of the sites that got hit were EMDs. However all of the sites that got hit had the main keyword in the domain name.

    The keyword was EXACTLY in the title, description, and meta tags. It was also in the content, alt tags, and with ALL of the hit sites above a 4% density
    Amen, agree with that 100%.

    Originally Posted by Becker13 View Post

    On top of this, I am sure some of you saw some EMDs go up in rank

    The ones of mine that did this have
    -Youtube, twitter, facebook pages/channels
    -Social signals
    -Low exact keyword onpage targeting
    -More links to authority sites than to affiliate sites on page

    Also think about it...There is NO authority quality site on the web that links to affiliate sites heavily on their home pages. This is because authority sites aim to keep traffic.
    Some good advice right there man, I learned this stuff in a super expensive course few years ago. Always link to an authority site related to your content to provide more value to the reader (having the ability to get more info that's top quality)
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    • Profile picture of the author PerformanceMan
      Originally Posted by SEO Haven View Post

      Amen, agree with that 100%.



      Some good advice right there man, I learned this stuff in a super expensive course few years ago. Always link to an authority site related to your content to provide more value to the reader (having the ability to get more info that's top quality)
      This increases your exit rate and bounce rate. Wouldn't you be better served to get them to click on an additional link on your website?
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    • Profile picture of the author raffiliato
      That's basically the point of Becker13's post, providing ideas that can make on page optimization meets Google expected standards and increase your chances of ranking better overall. Thanks a lot Becker! Really appreciate.
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  • Profile picture of the author Becker13
    Banned
    Yep and i am pretty sure bounce rate when your in the top plays a pretty big role now
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  • Profile picture of the author raffiliato
    I really appreciate the time and effort taken to put this together. And although it might be early to come up with a conclusive and detailed recovery strategy, keeping most of what you have said does help a lot to keep things in focus a bit.
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  • Profile picture of the author Danny Woolard
    Best Analysis So Far

    They only thing I disagree with is on my EMD, I have 5 affiliate ads above the fold: 4 amazon text ads, and 1 google image ad, and I still rank #2 for two main EMD keywords.

    The 3rd keyword dropped, because keyword was in URL/keyword and navigation tab, and H1 tag, and partial in H2 tag.

    This site is VERY THIN as well... One 100 word article on homepage, and one 500 word article on a category page. And still going strong on those 2 main keywords.

    My Review Site That Got Hit

    First I used Silos. Had things like Big Widget, Small Widget, Orange Widget in category pages/navigation tabs.

    Next I had about 10 reviews that had URL/product keyword in them. Product keyword was also used exactly in H1and again partial in H2, and mentioned once in 250 word article. All review pages went from 15-20 in SERP to out of top 100.
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  • Profile picture of the author Danny Woolard
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author terryd
      Originally Posted by denutza View Post

      Wheres a good place to buy PR 5s?
      go daddy auctions...
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  • Profile picture of the author Becker13
    Banned
    I use tb solutions
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  • Profile picture of the author cooler1
    @Becker13. Would you recommend using SEO Pressor when building a new site or do you not recommend using that? I already have it on my existing sites so was wondering if I should use it or not when building a new site.
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    • Profile picture of the author Becker13
      Banned
      Originally Posted by cooler1 View Post

      @Becker13. Would you recommend using SEO Pressor when building a new site or do you not recommend using that? I already have it on my existing sites so was wondering if I should use it or not when building a new site.
      I dont use it so no I would not suggest it
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  • Profile picture of the author hadtic
    There was the EMD but also a Panda and Penguin update rolling out at the same time and Google has already said that EMD sites affected were the ones with poor quality and thin content. Which is no real surprise to be honest.
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  • Profile picture of the author Periwinkle
    Banned
    Thanks for the info - good stuff...
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