Everything You Need To Know About Negative SEO
What is Negative SEO or Reverse SEO?
Negative SEO started to occur following the Penguin update when it became common knowledge that Google would apply penalties for manipulative links; such practices as negative SEO have caused companies to be diligent in monitoring their backlinks to ensure they are not being targeted by hostile competitors through negative SEO services. Read More On Wikipedia
Negative SEO is the process of downgrading one's site mostly your competitors or page’s in search result rankings through implementing tactics that violates Google Webmaster Guidelines and to trigger negative ranking factors or signals, for it to be penalized and to be affected by search algorithmic updates.
Understand Negative SEO and Dominate SERP's
Online businesses large or small use SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to get higher visibility in search engines for desired keywords so that they can attract more eyeballs eventually converting into paying customers.
During the last few decades, when it comes to online digital marketing, SEO is mainstream and this is mostly because the investment it requires is small as compared to offline advertisement; and in the longer run, the ROI is higher than any other online or offline marketing channels.
As SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a traffic and conversion driving channel, many businesses are always competing against each other. Although this is healthy, unfortunately a minute percentage of people try to manipulate the search algorithm by doing "Negative SEO".
In short, this means that when you are ranking well for money making keywords, there is a chance that your competitors or other SEO agencies might attack you with their black hat techniques with the basic goal to knock down your site's rankings in search engines and win over you the wrong way.
The good and the bad part about negative SEO is that it’s a hit and miss game. So it’s not necessary that it will work, but in our experience, most websites with good authority and reputation are hard to hit as compared to the sites with lesser or no reputation at all.
Reverse SEO - The Grinding Method
The grinding method is used to own the top 10 search results. It uses SEO to outrank any negative web result in the SERP's. This is difficult and can impact 10 times more effort than SEO. Ranking 10 websites ain’t easy especially when you don’t own some of those websites.
The method of decreasing one's search engine rankings of sites from the SERP's is called Reverse SEO. Reverse SEO is used to manage the bad online reputation in the search results down.
Reverse SEO Optimization and Reputation Management
7 steps to summarize Reverse SEO:
Identify the bad online reputation with regards to your brand or business keyword.
Analyse the competitive edge of that bad reputation site – on site structure, backlinks, social media authority etc.
Build on the keyword using off-site SEO on websites and other web properties which you don’t own
Build on effective SEO of websites and web properties that you own
Interlink those web properties
Get the backlinks of that bad reputation pages and point them to your properties
Repeat until desired effect is achieved
The grinding method with Reverse SEO is very effective. The only concern is if the company keeps repeating its mistakes – this will lead to more bad online reputation for your business. And if that bad news reaches publishers in the web, journalists and other bloggers, no matter how good an Online reputation Management Specialist you are, you won’t be able to beat that buzz.
Many people are talking about what Negative SEO is and how to get rid of it? SEO'ers research and write different tactics to stay safe from the negative SEO. Beat your competitor search listings by taking over your site's online reputation and avoid negative SEO or reverse SEO tactics & techniques.
Matt Cutts addresses questions about negative SEO.
Learn more about the disavow links feature:
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Webmaster Central Blog:
Webmaster Central: http://www.google.com/webmasters/
Understanding What is SEO? and SEO Methodologies “White Hat” and “Black Hat”
Negative SEO Tactics
Below are some known Negative SEO Tactics that were used to by hackers and competitor's to crush your online reputation and denote your site from search results.
Different Tactical Negative SEO Strategies
Paid links are considered as the easiest way to get your website quickly ranked in SEPRs; but only if you have good funds with you to spend on your SEO campaign. However, it is against the natural SEO which affects organic search results.
Buying links and participating in link schemes intended to manipulate PageRank is a violation of Google Webmaster Guidelines.
If thousands of low quality links get pointed to your site there is a reasonable chance it will most likely get on the radar of Google. We suggest your to work with Google, and change your site to comply within their webmaster guidelines the best you can, and submit a reconsideration request containing details on links you have no control over.
It is the number one form of negative SEO. In this tactic your competitors will go to spam sites and add a link to your site.
Building low quality backlinks pointing to your site which eventually will caught up Google's penalty - Penguin. It’s as simple as that.
Stealing content before it can get indexed:
Another common Negative SEO tactic is to rip your content the moment it goes live and add it to a site that is crawled frequently than your site is. This makes your site look like it’s duplicating content.
This is an attempt to copy a site’s content to make it look like the original site is actually duplicating it. To prevent this from being an effective tactic you should always maintain an updated sitemap and consistently re-submitting when new content is published.
Additionally, the use of an absolute "rel=canonical" tag on pages can help establish your website as the authority when content is getting scraped by a third party. Another simple way to identify if your site is getting scraped and duplicated is by performing a Google search containing a a sentence from your web pages within quotes.
Ripping content prior to indexing is a great way to combat this is by keeping an updated sitemap & consistently resubmitting new content when published.
Review Attacks are used by competitors where they can easily add fake reviews to your business listings, making it look like you are trying to manipulate the business listing.
This supposedly worked in the “case study”. In that, reviews were removed from the victim’s Google Places/Local listing (Google My Business). To prevent this from happening be sure to monitor reviews and don't forget to use the “report a problem” link at the bottom of your business listing to notify Google of the issue.
If you are receiving false reviews, make sure you report this to Google ASAP via the “report a problem” section.
Site Speed / Malicious Crawlers:
Excessive crawling of a website can create latency issues for a typical user browsing a site. It’s possible to prevent malicious and unwanted crawlers from having access to one's site, but it should be done very carefully so as not to block search engines such as Google, Bing, or users from navigating.
The best way to combat this is to discover the IP addresses that Google, Yahoo, and Bing are using to crawl your website. Then you can start blocking crawlers in IP ranges apart from the major search engines.
DMCA removal requests:
Fake Legal Shots - This Negative SEO tactic has been around for years. After running a link audit report on your site, a competitor can easily identify your strongest links. From there a “fake” legal notice will go out notifying the webmaster to the website linking back to you requesting that the link go down for copyright infringement or else legal action will ensue. These legal take downs usually come in the form of C&D or DMCA requests.
This is, by far, is one of the most scary and effective negative SEO tactic. One defence for this is to establish a relationship with the site before it can happen. You can send an email stating, "thank you for the link!", could be enough to help keep that link permanent. Keep an eye on new referral traffic in analytics can help identify new links worth being thankful for! This is faster than waiting for a link index, such as Ahref, Majestic SEO, Open Site Explorer (OSE), BackLinkWatch to update and surface new links.
Hacking and Security Breaches:
If you don’t have the proper security, someone could easily hack into your site or blog and block the Google bots from crawling your site altogether.
Exact Match Anchor Text Links Spam (From Forum Sites)
Keep a close eye on the links that are pointing to your website. With the recent Penguin updates, you could lose your rankings if a competitor started building thousands of anchor-text links to your site via forum & comment spam.
The best way to counter forum spam this is to focus your link-building efforts on sites with strong domain authority. Remember quality over quantity.
In rare cases, competitors will actually create fake emails and email all of your good partnerships and tell them to take down links to your site. This isn’t common, but it’s something to consider.
Report You as Spam:
Google allows websites to contact them about any spam issues. A competitor could easily contact Google and claim your website is full of spam. This is usually the last step in a negative SEO operation.
Panda Recovery: A Guide to Recovering Google’s Panda Update
Negative SEO Techniques
Huge link growth within a short period could be an indication of negative SEO.
When someone is trying to destroy your site rankings, the first thing they will try to do is probably to send you hundreds or thousands of bad, spammy, cheap, low quality and auto-generated backlinks from abandoned blogs, forums and sites. The range of possibilities is unfortunately very wide.
This is why you should check your link growth regularly. Backlinks tools like the Competitive Link Velocity (CLV) or Monitor Backlinks or Linkody will help you understand what is considered normal in your niche.
With recent advancement in search algorithm updates, Google will probably protect you in case they register that the amount is really high. However, if the number appears acceptable and the link growth is continuous, then Google could assume it is your own attempt to increase your site rankings with paid backlinks – which will probably lead to a Penalty. Checkout the reason why even big brands, like William Hill and Expedia, received unnatural link penalized.
Unbalanced Link Ratio:
There is nothing wrong about few bad backlinks if you have enough good links to cover that. That’s exactly what Google’s John Mueller mentioned in this video:
The big question in SEO is not whether or not to have good or bad backlinks, Follow or NoFollow links, Money or Brand Keywords. It is about a natural balance of your backlink profile.
Site-wide links are ok, but not if 80% of all your backlinks are like this. It is ok to compete for few Money Keywords, but Google will probably penalize you if more than 50% of all your keywords are Money Keywords. Why? Because it's not natural!
Every deviation from a natural balance of your backlink profile will be an indication of a violation of the Google webmaster guidelines, and a potential reason for a Penalty and, consequently, a loss in visibility. These ratio may vary by country, language and industry. The CLA is the only tool that can help you find out what is considered normal in your niche.
Many webmasters try to fix a Google Penalty problem just by moving a site to another domain and by redirecting URLs to that new site domain. It's an interesting idea, but Google doesn’t allow this, in short, they just moved the Google Penalty to the new location.
This becomes a problem when somebody decides to take advantage of this by redirecting a penalized site pointing to yours. In such situations, Google could forward the Penalty to your site.
Link type redirects - Penalty redirects have been working since Penguin 2.0 updates as Christoph C. Cemper found out in the Home24 analysis.
Powerful, unique, and quality content that provides value to users will always be one of the strongest ranking factors for Google. It's hard job to create good valuable content and it can sometimes take many hours or days or weeks to write a good article. And once the article is published on your site or blog, everyone can copy it. But you can feel safe since Google bot crawled it first on your site or blog so all others will just be seen as scrapers.
But, what if someone decides to crawl your website continuously and then publish all your fresh content on some other site? Google could visit that domain before your site, and that can be enough to destroy all your hard work. Content scraping is an illegal practice, and a very popular method on the Internet.
After some time, you will start losing your rankings because now in the eyes of Google it’s not just that you are not creating unique content, you are a scraper on top of it! Even though you knew that Google Panda update now penalizes duplicate content!
So when you notice someone is stealing your site content, you should contact the webmaster and kindly ask him to remove the content from his website. If he doesn’t respond or react to your request, you can report this site to Google and ask them to remove it from their services.
Removing Good Links:
This might sound weird or even impossible, but someone could research your site backlink profile, find your best quality and strongest backlinks, and then contact the webmasters and ask them to remove these backlinks.
They could reach out under a different name, pretend they are you or an SEO agency working for you. In a frightening test David Naylor confirmed that a majority of webmasters actually removed the links!
Even better rankings for particular keywords can be harmful. For e.g. it is pretty obvious that Hostgator wouldn’t want to rank for keyword such as "The Worst Hosting Server". It would bring a bad reputation and a loss of customers. These would be even worse if someone tries to rank them for some spammy or adult keywords.
Bad reputation can be spread on social network sites as well. Fake accounts could make a lot of harm to your image.
There are many server sabotage techniques, the best known of which is definitely the DDoS attack. It aims at making a machine or network resource not accessible by sending heavy traffic from multiple sources, and thus taking your server down. As a result, your site visitors won’t be able to access your website.
Another popular server sabotage tactic are scripts for heavy crawling which cause heavy server loading times. They are usually started from different IP addresses, loading large documents from a site.
But why would anybody make these attacks? To annoy site visitors with a slow opening site?
No, the final goal here is to send a wrong signal to Google.
In 2010, Google stated that site page speed load became one of 200 ranking factors. If we know that everything Google wants is a positive experience for its users, then it's pretty clear that slow sites will lose rankings and visibility.
Create a Gmail account and start buying obvious paid links for a competitor. Wait a month, then send out a mass email requesting to purchase a link (Link Scheme) and include MattCutts.com or a few other Google employees in the email.
Set up a new site designed to be a 'blog' in the same industry as the site you want to take down. Blast it with tons of awful links until it gets penalized. When doing the reconsideration request, say that the SEO company you want to penalize was building the links for you and they never told you about them.
Identify some of the 'soon-to-be-penalized' link networks and order a bunch of links to a competitor from those sites. Matt will often tweet something like “Taking a look at a number of Italian link networks…you’ve been warned” a few weeks before nailing them. It’s a welcome invitation for those interested in negative SEO.
Set up a Gmail account and use mail merge to try and remove all of your competitors backlinks. Yes, all of them. You can use a few different tools to pull in contact information automatically for a list of domains that link to your competitor. You won’t get all of them removed but most people remove links without verifying you are with a particular company, especially if you offer cash.
Post an advertisement offering to sell links on your competitor’s website on Digital Point, Fiverr, Black Hat World or your marketplace of choice. Report the ad listing to Google through another Gmail account.
Create a widget that is targeted to low-quality blogs (gambling, adult, black hat forums etc) and add a nice keyword heavy “attribution” link in the widget for a competitor. Bonus points if the widget is added on a sitewide basis.
Buy expired domains with 1000s of crap links pointing to them and 301 to your competitor’s most important page. You can find these on ExpiredDomains.net for pennies (sadly, most domains on these sites have been burned to the ground).
Set up 10-15 niche blogs, publish posts with spun content that link out to spam sites and include a nice “Sponsors” section on a sitewide sidebar that links out to a competitor. Report these sites to Google from a non-related Gmail account.
Reverse engineer the webdesign.org Twitter fiasco. Set up a shady site, create a Twitter account to match, wait 6 months and start publicly tweeting at people to ‘renew’ the obvious paid links you’ve added to the site.
Every now and then, you just know that a certain tactic is going to get nailed. Guest blogging already went through one fiasco, but Google may take further action on spammy guest posts. Hire somebody to build 100s of obvious guest posts with anchor text rich links in the author bio section. If you get lucky, Penguin 3 may nail them.
Hire hackers to inject links to your competitor via iframes, rogue JS, etc. Report the site for spam. Super black hat tactic obviously but the two link tactics Google hates the most are hidden/hacked links and link networks.
Online Reputation Management Tips, Best Practices and Tools
Google Bowling and Negative SEO
This unethical SEO practice began when Google started penalizing sites that purchase site- wide text link ads to get lots of incoming links in a hurry. Some fraudulent webmasters realized that this could be used against competitor sites by linking to them instead of their own site. Google claims to have measures in place to prevent this practice from unfairly damaging a site's PageRank.
As a form of negative SEO (search engine optimization), certain unscrupulous entities began buying sitewide links for competitor sites, thus causing them to incur the Google penalty. Simple, evil and a very real practice.
Google Bowling and Negative SEO
Google Bowling is the process of promoting competitor website in order to make it with full of spamming links, so that their website will automatically penalized Google. This is the most dangerous part of business world. so every business owners should be aware of this technique and continuously watching our backlink is very important for protecting our website from penalty.
In short "Google Bowling" AKA "Negative SEO" refers to using different tactics and techniques to get Google to penalize your competitor website make it loose rankings so that you will become the next high ranking site.
How To Combat and Recover From Negative SEO
The Survival Guide with some useful tips to finding and battling negative SEO for your site. Learn how to protect your website from negative SEO attack.
Defending Against Black Hat and Negative SEO Tactics
Do you suspect that your site have negative SEO? Follow below steps on "How To Recover From and Prevent Negative SEO"
Setup Emails Alerts From Webmaster Tools: Set up Google Webmaster Tools (Now Google Search Console) email forwarding and update your profile in Bing Webmaster Central to get emails when you have messages. I prefer weekly, but daily and monthly are choices as well. This will allow both search engines to tell you immediately when they believe something is wrong with your site.
Set Up More Alerts:
Your site name
Your domain name
site:yourdomain.com viagra or payday loan (and a few other spam terms) [Please note: this won’t work if you actually sell Viagra or talk about it, but you get the point]
Analytics - Check out this Google Analytics Alerts Guide for those of you on GA. You’ll have to set the boundaries that work for your website.
Sudden drop in site traffic
Decrease in conversions
Increase in bounce rate
Check your Site: Manually check the site, or get someone new to check it each time. Hire a volunteer outside of your organization to search one of your key terms you rank well for and have them browse throughout your site. Get their feedback while you’re at it. Following this process gives you peace of mind that the site is working right and also gives you some information about site usability.
Track Your Links: Track link metrics from OpenSiteExplorer (OSE), Majestic SEO, or AHREFs. Choose one and stay with it. Keep an eye on the total number of links and root domains. Any major changes in metrics should be investigated. We can’t tell you explicitly what to look for, but you’ll start seeing trends. Try to look for things that stray from trends.
Identify New Referring Domains: This is trickier, but once you get the hang of it, it’s easy and can help with link building. Download a list of referring sites in your analytics package — from 2 months ago and last month. Remove any sites that are mentioned twice, what is left over are the new referring domains. Look for oddities. And, if there are new domains referring traffic and they look awesome (e.g. hello New York Times!), dig deeper, research, check what page is getting traffic, the anchor text, etc. And thank the person/company that linked to you.
Content Duplication: Take care of your original content and avoid Google Panda penalty. Find duplicate content issue related to your site using tools such as SEMRush, Copyscape etc. Even better is its affordable Copysentry tool, which monitors the Internet for duplicates of your content and sends you instant email alerts when duplicates of your content are found! Also, make proper use of Canonical tags.
Disavow a Link: If you believe your site's ranking is being harmed by low-quality links you do not control, you can ask Google not to take them into account when assessing your site. You should still make every effort to clean up unnatural links pointing to your site. Use Disavow Tool - Simply disavowing them isn't enough. More information..
Online SEO Tools for Links, Keywords and Rank Tracking
Using Negative SEO Ethically to Boost Rankings
To summarize, most tactics of negative SEO are unethical, targeting any site ranking towards the top, involving black hat SEO techniques to discredit legitimate websites by desperate agencies or businesses.
In contrast, Ethical Negative SEO targets competition involved in black hat SEO techniques, manipulating search results to appear at the top. These sites, while not yet penalized by Google are stealing site traffic and customers from those who follow Google’s webmaster guidelines. Implementing these negative SEO tactics will hurt those engaged in black hat tactics and help your business.
Using Negative SEO Ethically to Boost Rankings
We’ve all seen a website where upon closer analysis, it became clear the business purchased backlinks or earned authority in a way not compatible with Google’s webmaster guidelines. It’s frustrating to encounter competition outranking your own business, that don’t deserve to be so visible. They have cheated their way to getting website traffic and customers.
1. Google Map Listing Corrections
Business Name Corrections
Because the name of a business still has strong weight in local rankings, most businesses disregards Google webmaster guidelines on the business name. Adding or in some cases, stuffing, adding keywords to the name, especially geographic terms, can get a businesses local map listing ranking quickly.
Recently, Google updated their guidelines on business name descriptions (great post on this topic here). Business names need to reflect the real legal world or doing local business as name. This is often used to differentiate the business name from other locations such as OLA CABS North and OLA CABS South. However, many businesses take it overboard, violating Google’s webmaster guidelines.
Excerpt from full guidelines:
Cannot Be Used:
Location information, such as neighbourhood, city, or street name, unless it is part of the real world representation of the business. Your name must not include street address or direction information.
Not acceptable: “Subway Downtown“, “Macy’s Union Square“, “Holiday Inn (I-93 at Exit 2)“, “U.S. Bank ATM - 7th & Pike – Parking Garage Lobby near Elevator“
Acceptable: “Starbucks”, “Macy’s”, “Holiday Inn Salem”, “U.S. Bank ATM”, “University of California Berkeley”
The problem with these guidelines, is Google doesn’t do their diligence in preventing businesses from stuffing keywords in their local business listing name.
Before Local Pack with Spammed Listings
A screenshot of the local pack for “Chicago Criminal Defense Firms” features 5 businesses out of 7 that violate Google’s name guidelines.
Local Pack Spam
Robert J Callahan | Criminal Defense Lawyer
Law Offices of David L. Freidberg, P.C.
LAW OFFICE OF ANDREW WEISBERG – Criminal Defense Attorney
Michael J. Petro | Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney
Darryl A. Goldberg, CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
Can you spot the stuffed keyword? Criminal Defense Lawyer? 4 of the businesses have added the keyword or a close variation in order to rank in the local pack. You can always check the “Doing Business As” for the county, to check the official name of the business.
After you determined, the business is in fact, stuffing the name with a keyword phrase, submit a Google Maps correction report. Simply click on the Google Map (Google Local/Places) listing then click “suggest an edit”. Cross out the incorrect name, adding the actual name of the business.
You can even add a note, although we won't recommend including anything about how the business is manipulating results. Simply add that the business isn’t using their legal name and has added a keyword phrase.
After Local Pack Spam Reported
Local Pack CleanThe local pack after submitting reports for all the law firms is very different. The Toney Law Firm moved up to position E, with a name that abided by Google’s guidelines in the previous screenshot. Robert J Callahan moved down from A to position G. There could be other factors involved, but without criminal defense lawyer next to his real law firm name, he lost position. Goldberg moved up to C from E, likely with the new mix of results. We can also see many new law firms, include a new local spammer, The Brandon Law Firm in position B. After reporting this firm for their name, the local pack is likely to follow Google’s local guidelines. Although with as big of a market as Chicago for criminal defense law firms, this will likely be a constant battle.
Business Address Corrections
Submit a Google Maps correction for virtual offices. If you have a good idea of your competition’s physical locations, but spot an odd competitor that you think may not have a physical presence in your city, submit a correction.
Virtual offices violate Google’s local guidelines. Google does not accepts online business listings which does not have an physical address. Confirm it is a virtual office by searching for the competitor’s address in Google Maps. Do multiple business listing show up for the same address? Many virtual offices will have office space, executive offices, or even virtual offices in their name and will appear on top of their clients in maps.
Simply suggest an edit, crossing out the address and add a note that you visited the business at the address, but it wasn’t there. It’s even more effective if you can get a few colleagues at different periods in a month to report a businesses address.
Both business address and name corrections will be reviewed quickly by editors within 72 hours. Google will send you an email on whether your correction was accepted or rejected! So get to it.
SEO Tips: One Page Two Or More Links Pointing To The Same URL
2. Steal Exact Match Domain (EMD) Traffic
It's unfortunate even with Google EMD - Exact Match Domain Update in late September 2012 it hasn’t an effective penalty and most frustrating when executing ethical SEO and see exact match domains with low quality content, few backlinks, and questionable business models outranking legitimate sites in search results. You can see their more impact on Yahoo and Bing results.
However, you can also capitalize on Exact Match Domain - EMD’s, but implement it as a defense strategy. At a minimum, you shouldn’t be ignorant of domains available for auction in your space. For this, you should also own several of these domains and consider the practice of domain flipping. Keep the domain from your competition, but if a news site or a non-competitive entity is seeking the domain, sell and easily get profit from the sale and you'll also profit by preventing the domain from being snatched by competitors.
One of the biggest downsides to using an EMD's is low brand equity. For example, when the attorney’s law office is really the name of the business, yet indiancriminallawyers.com is the domain. Which do you think customers remember as the name of the business?
Create more brand confusion by buying the singular or plural form of the domains, essentially domain variations of the competitor you are attempting to hurt. Throw up a microsite landing page with unique content about your business.
Over time, your close domain variation will begin to get index in search engines and eventually rank. You will also capture direct traffic from any customer that forgets to add an letter "S" or types in indiandefenseattorneys.com forgetting it’s indianfenselawyers.com. In even more competitive niche industries, you may find competitors are using hyphens (a poor and ineffective way) to stuff keywords in the domain. Watch the non hyphen domain closely and if goes up for sale, buy it and cause even more confusion.
For example below is a business identified as implementing this tactic effectively. They have created multiple microsites with unique content on each page and have even built links to these microsites, leveraging them to boost their main domain’s authority.
Main Domain: datavox.net
With your network of same or similar looking exact match domain microsites, you can now cheaply bid on the key terms in the domain using Google Adwords. Since the domain is so generic, the business cannot prevent you from bidding on their site domain keywords, because they won’t be trademarked and will always be popular keywords. You can also benefit from having a higher quality score and can spend less of advertisements.
Now go out and steal that well deserved traffic!
How To Rank Your Website Without Using Spammy Techniques
3. Submit To Google Webspam Reports
In this tactic has the longest wait for a return. Matt Cutts originally reveal the ability to submit webspam reports in Google Search Console (Earlier Google Webmaster Tools) back in 2010. Since then, it’s still indecisive whether all of these webspam reports are read and acted upon. There are a variety of options, but essentially submitting a webspam report is Google’s system of reporting unethical and black hat activity.
Go here to submit webspam
Paid Links: This page is selling or buying links. To report activity which seems like a black box - little action is taken
Objectionable Content: This page is inappropriate. Inappropriate for non safesearch
Malware: This page is infected. Reports result in quick action
Other Google Products: This page abuses Google products other than Search, e.g. Google Maps, AdSense, etc.
Copyright and other legal issues: This page should be removed under applicable law. Involves fast resolution.
Personal/Private: This page discloses private information.
Phishing: This page is trying to get sensitive information. Reports result in quick action.
Rich Snippets: This page doesn't comply with Google's rich snippets guidelines. You can find a competitor who has added review schema in the wrong way, or used schema to unethically capture a increased click through rate. Report it and get it removed.
Something else is wrong: This page has other, non webspam related issues.
Most forms of black hat tactics fall into the paid links category which can be used to report link spam, traded links, paid links etc. As suggested by Rand Fishkin back in 2010, it is more likely that these spam reports help Google see what spam is getting through their search algorithm filter, allowing them to fine tune their algorithm and catch more webspam on the next search algorithm refresh vs. sending out manual penalties to sites using unethical practices. This would align with it being difficult to measure if sites reported to Google are overtime penalized.
Since the Penguin update, it is confirmed to be released at a more regular update cycle, we expect paid link reporting to become more effective. In 2013, during the initial penguin algorithm update, Google's webmaster head - Matt Cutts even created a special Penguin spam report for submitting spam that wasn’t caught in the penguin update. Whether this form is still being used for 2014 or beyond is unlikely.
Please note that the above methods may or may not work as an Negative SEO Tactic and does not guarantee of providing little or no benefit. This is to give you an idea of tactics which might even be bypassed by Google and needs to be taken care of your business online reputation.
Implementing Ethical Negative SEO tactics should be viewed more as: tactics that negate, penalize and reduce visibility for competition engaged in black hat techniques. Too often, agencies and businesses rarely have time or the insight to prevent and combat the activities of a competition. However, instead of cursing under your breath, take some proactive steps to protect your company's brand and position online with these easy to implement tactics.
How an Agency Assist you in Generating a Significant Return on your Marketing Investment?
Making Sure You Avoid Negative SEO Practice
Using black hat SEO techniques is like walking through a minefield. As Google gets better at spotting these dodgy shortcuts to higher rankings, dabbling in the dark arts could land your website in serious trouble.
A good understanding of how some of the common black hat tactics work will not only help you steer clear of them, it will also help you develop better white hat SEO strategies.
Highly-successful search engine marketers who struggle with their technical SEO are as useless as black hat geeks who struggle with their content and promotional strategies.
Much like Black Hat SEO, Negative SEO is an unethical marketing strategy that we’re striving to counter with a White Hat SEO approach. This is a very dangerous game and can result into a law suit. While Google does their part, it’s your responsibility to make sure that your website isn’t taking a dive in search rankings because of malicious or unfair activities. You could hire a Professional Digital Marketer or an SEO Expert and stay vigilant, you’re bound to build a strong defense and boost your SEO campaign in an honest and responsible manner.
Black Hat SEO: A Comprehensive Guide to Black Hat SEO
In fact, there are still a lot of black hat techniques that have not mentioned above, which used to be the most popular black hat techniques, and some of them still are. If you are using any of techniques above, you should stop doing them. Sooner or later, Google algorithms will catch up, and it will be too late for you. As always, please leave a comment if you have any comment or suggestion.
Save Your Website From the Risk of Negative SEO
Beat your competitor search listings by taking over your site's online reputation and avoid negative SEO or reverse SEO tactics & techniques Mumbai INDIA.
The Moz Blog – Negative SEO: Should You Be Worried? If attacked, what should you do?
Forbes – Have Mercenaries Been Hired to Torpedo Your Search Rankings?
Jacob King – The Horror of Negative SEO
Search Engine Land – Negative SEO from Links – What Can You Do if You’re Hit?
How to Protect Your Website from Negative SEO - KISSmetrics
Home › SEO Tips & Techniques › What is Negative SEO? How Does It Work?
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