If you suspect your site got hit by the Penguin update that just rolled out, the first thing you need to do is STOP WHINING because it won’t help you.
Now calm down, take a deep breath and examine your “anchor link” over-optimization (Penguin is mostly about the anchor links pointing back to your site).
This is largely responsible for majority of penalties, in addition to the penalty for low quality links… that is backlinks on pages that have thin content, low trust, low page rank, located on de-indexed sites, on poor sites etc. – and I will make a separate post explaining that later.
What happened with the Anchor text penalty – is that Google does not want you to “game” them so easily by using your main “money keywords” (primary and secondary keywords you want to rank for) in the backlinks.
They figured that people gaming the rankings and doing SEO have simply left a “pattern” of unnatural anchor links in their backlink profile – that is easily detectible because it contains mostly money keywords as the anchors and not keywords that look natural… natural being the “anchor link pattern” and ratio that the other majority sites have.
Google figured that people forcefully doing SEO would repetitively stuff and use money keywords in their anchor links – in their race to rank on top. And, this is unnatural.
This is ironical because…
The original Google algorithm and patent defined how it ranked pages in the first place… using keywords in anchor text links, as a measure to pass link juice down to pages and rank pages for specific keywords, and devise the PageRank factor for each page.
Now, fixing your anchor links profile is going to take a little more than simply changing a few of your anchor link this time.
You’re going to want to make it look as natural as possible to the search engines.
This means building a lot of links that have LSI keywords (please see note at end if you don’t know what LSI keywords are), generic keywords, raw URL links, general niche links, brand links, full sentence links, randomly looking anchors as well as image links.
For example: if you have used your main keyword as the anchor text link in over 50% of your backlinks, chances that your site got hit are very high.
Google is giving sites a negative penalty for doing this, rather than devaluing the links. This is definitely the most dreadful thing they have done. As a negative penalty is harder to recover from – and requires you to fix things and then file a Disavow Tool and a reconsideration request for your site recovery – which probably may not happen (as per survey done only 10% of sites that are hit have been able to recover). We will discuss how to do all the formalities of recovery in another document in this report as it requires detailed and careful handling and understanding.
So here is the new “rule” of ratio distribution for you to follow while you are building your anchor links.
Continue ReadingFirst Things First – Fix Your Anchor Links, Baby