Google Penalty World
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Google Penalty World
Google penalizations algorithms: From Google Panda, to Penguin, news, tools and resources
Curated by Robin Good
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Check Google Penalties and Impact On Your Site with the Google Penalty Checker

Check Google Penalties and Impact On Your Site with the Google Penalty Checker | Google Penalty World |
Robin Good's insight:

The Google Penalty Checker is a free web-based tool which allows you to instantly verify whether your web site has been penalized by one of the Google Panda or Google Penguin algorithm updates in the last two years.

The key characterizing feature of this service is that it provides a statistically significant result that highlights exactly which update impacted your website and if it was a positive or negative impact.


Free to use.

If you want to monitor more than two websites, there's a PRO version. Pricing it's here:

Try it out now:

Use guide:

FAQ (very useful): 

Adam Atodl's curator insight, August 5, 2013 7:37 PM

This is a really useful visualization of the impact of Google's updates on your websites. It allows you to see at a glance which updates had most impact and why.

The basic (free) plan allows for the checking of two websites - if you want more than that you have to upgrade to the Pro version. 

Warning - the analysis of my main site had more red on it than the one shown above - and too many big red blobs really depresses me :-(

Register for a free account here:

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The Guide To How to Identify and Fix the Google Panda in 2012

The Guide To How to Identify and Fix the Google Panda in 2012 | Google Penalty World |

Robin Good: This is an excellent and thorough guide on how to find out whether you have been hot by Panda and on how to fix Google's most feared automatic penalization algorithm to date, based on the Panda fighting experience at SEOgadget in 2011.

From the article: 

"Panda is about dealing with bad content, not bad links. Bad content comes in different flavours: duplicate, weak, thin and template.

Panda acts like a domain wide penalty: your whole site is affected and your good stuff is dragged down by your bad stuff.

Web crawler accessibility issues affect how search engines see, and therefore assess, your content.

Often, badly designed Information Architectures compound the problems with already weak content.

Large sites that have many pages, templated content and lots of sub-categories are the most at risk.

If you haven’t been monitoring and fixing your accessibility issues, as highlighted in Google Webmaster Tools, you are at risk."

Three key takeaways:

"1) The world is not as it once was.

Crap websites trying to masquerade as decent websites are being hunted down and sunk below the quality line.

2) Google owes you nothing.

Tactics to just barely raise your quality enough to recover your rankings are unlikely to pay dividends. You may well find yourself a loser again the next time the quality bar is raised.

3) Google is judging you.

Google is going to continue to raise the quality bar with future updates. When your competitors improve their websites, you will be weakest and in line for the chop at the next quality update."

Highly recommended. 9/10

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The Google Penalization Guide: Everything You Wanted To Know About It

The Google Penalization Guide: Everything You Wanted To Know About It | Google Penalty World |

Robin Good: If you are looking to understand more about Google penalizations, whether "algorithmic" (like Google Panda) or "manual", here is a great guide by David Harry to dive into.

Key sections in this guide include:

  • Have You Been Penalized?
  • What Can You Get Penalized For?
  • Diagnosing a Google Penalty
  • How to Deal With a Google Penalty
  • Dealing with Algorithm Changes
  • What Data to Keep for the SEO Doctor

Recommended. 8/10

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Google Penalizes Web Pages With Too Many Ads "Above The Fold"

Google Penalizes Web Pages With Too Many Ads "Above The Fold" | Google Penalty World |

From the article: "Similar to how last year’s Panda Update works, Google is examining sites it finds and effectively tagging them as being too ad-heavy or not.

If you’re tagged that way, you get a ranking decrease attached to your entire site (not just particular pages) as part of today’s launch.

If you reduce ads above-the-fold, the penalty doesn’t instantly disappear. Instead, Google will make note of it when it next visits your site. But it can take several weeks until Google’s “push” or “update” until the new changes it has found are integrated into its overall ranking system, effectively removing penalties from sites that have changed and adding them to new ones that have been caught."

From Google’s post on its Inside Search blog yesterday:

"We’ve heard complaints from users that if they click on a result and it’s difficult to find the actual content, they aren’t happy with the experience.

Rather than scrolling down the page past a slew of ads, users want to see content right away.

So sites that don’t have much content “above-the-fold” can be affected by this change. If you click on a website and the part of the website you see first either doesn’t have a lot of visible content above-the-fold or dedicates a large fraction of the site’s initial screen real estate to ads, that’s not a very good user experience.

Such sites may not rank as highly going forward.

Google also posted the same information to its Google Webmaster Central blog."

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Backlinks Are Not The Culprit: How Google Penguin Really Works

"Penguin has now been reverse engineered. The results are shared including what is likely wrong and what you can do to fix it.

This is totally different than what most of the SEO world is telling you to do these days."


Josh Bachynski reports in this video that the biggest surprise for most people will be the fact that Penguin has NOTHING to do with your backlinks, as it only targets on-page factors.

Key take-aways from the video:

1) You need to fix on-page issues as the top priority

2) Penguin-based negative SEO is not possible

3) No need to delete links - Google is already taking care of that by devaluing those

4) Add quality links to your key content in ways that make them look "natural" to Google (30% exact match query, 30% partial match, 30% url-based, 10% generic/other stuff)

5) Do not overoptimize - Google knows what your page is about - don't overdo it with keywords. Check with Google Webmaster Tools and see what Google thinks your page is about.

6) Try always to look and be as "natural" as you can be. 

Must see. 9/10

Watch the video for a complete explanation: 

(Thanks to Nicoleta Leon for pointing me to this) 

mmojungle's comment, May 29, 2012 4:58 AM
Personalmente Robin che ne pensi?
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Google Panda in Plain English (Infographic) - Single Grain

Google Panda in Plain English (Infographic) - Single Grain | Google Penalty World |

The Google Panda visual history laid out in a visual infographic poster. The nine Google Panda updates release dates and key traits and a summary reminder of what are the key things that this automatic filtering algorithm is after.

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Google Panda 3.2 Update Confirmed

Google Panda 3.2 Update Confirmed | Google Penalty World |

"Google has confirmed reports of a Panda update with us.

[Google] told us they have done a data refresh of the Google Panda algorithm about a week ago, and added that there were no additional signals or algorithm changes. This was only a data refresh.

I saw reports over the past week or so of webmasters commenting about their rankings. Most were complaining that they lost rankings, but some said sites that were originally hit by Panda regained their traffic levels pre-Panda. This would explain the data refresh, where Google ran the algorithm and updated the sites that should or should not have been touched by Panda."

Read the full article: 

(thanks to Giuseppe Mauriello)

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Google Pays To Produce "Thin" Content: The Same Type That Panda Was Designed To Penalize

Google Pays To Produce "Thin" Content: The Same Type That Panda Was Designed To Penalize | Google Penalty World |

Danny Sullivan writes on Search Engine land:

"Google, the company that has been fighting against paid links and “thin” content, seems to be behind a campaign that’s generating both on behalf of its Chrome browser.

Aaron Wall wrote about the campaign today at SEO Book, spotting how a search for “This post is sponsored by Google” brings back over 400 pages written apparently as part of a Google marketing campaign...

The campaign is odd in two major ways. For one, it potentially violates Google’s guidelines against paid links.

The head of Google’s web spam team, Matt Cutts, has been quite vocal that sponsored posts shouldn’t be a way for people to gain links in response for payment, that any links in such posts should use the nofollow attribute to prevent them from passing credit to Google’s ranking algorithm.

And yet here, we see one of Google’s sponsored post doing exactly that..."

Read the full article: 

See the follow-up story, Google: Yes, Sponsored Post Campaign Was Ours But Not What We Signed-Up For.

Postscript 3: See Google’s Chrome Page No Longer Ranks For “Browser” After Sponsored Post Penalty

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