You May Never Recover From Google's Penguin

May 2, 2013 • 8:44 am | comments (159) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Penguin SignSeriously. No recovery. Ever. There has been some discussion lately inside and outside the WebmasterWorld of the eventual possibility that no one will recover from Penguin. There will be no mass recovery and you will never get your rankings back from a year ago. Not to sound like the bearer of bad SEO news but after such a long demotion the reality of the situation is starting to set in for many people. There will be no recovery.

It's been one-year since the original Penguin update. To date there have only been a few questionable Penguin recoveries and most of those have been pointed to as brand favoritism by Google. Of the many webmasters affected many have gone to extreme lengths to fix the mountains of "possible" issues in an effort to recover. However most if not all of the fixes haven't done anything at all.

As many report in WebmasterWorld, the fixes have actually done more harm than good. An observable trend has taken place with those affected by Penguin. It has been the gradual decline of traffic that resembles a "flat-line" appearance in the analytics. You could throw 1000 of the best authoritative .edu links to your website and it might not even move the traffic needle a fraction.

So what does this mean if no one recovers? Has Google even created a way to recover from this algorithm? If not, then why? If there is not a way to recover and it's a sure-fire death sentence then what's next? Are their any factors creating movement in the SERP's even if you have been impacted by Penguin?

According to tedster in the WebmasterWorld he believes those sites that have invested in conversion optimization have fared the best post-Penguin.

However, there are a few hit sites that have recovered - definitely not many, and especially not e-commerce. The successful approaches I know about always seem to include a focus on conversion optimization rather than traditional SEO methods. Focusing on the user experience with a strong value-add for the visitor seems to make a big difference.

I would agree with him to a point. If you have no traffic to begin with how is improving conversion going to make much of a difference. As another user in the WebmasterWorld thread points out he has been improving conversion for a whole year and nothing has made much of a difference. So does conversion optimization make any difference? Is it possible to recover?

Note from Barry: Obviously, the only way to recover from any algorithmic update is to make changes that satisfy the algorithm and then wait for Google to re-run the algorithm. The issue here is it is hard to know exactly what changes to make since there have been so few algorithm updates with Penguin. The last one we had was on October 5th - so over a half a year ago. We are expecting a new update this year, a big one, but who knows when.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld

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Akos Horvath

05/02/2013 12:59 pm

I may have to agree unfortunately. I have tried everything for the last year, and I cant even fathom what I have done to be penalized. Of course I have an e-commerce site too and I am baffled at this point, we went to 3-5th page from second position on first page, and when I filled out the form I completely disappeared. I think I even got penalized for daring to ask. Site is, and the keyword was tarps. Anyone with suggestions can e-mail me at What am I missing here? Thanks!

Penguin Frustration

05/02/2013 01:00 pm

This is one of the most frustrating situations I've ever been apart of. I had a total of 1300 links when Penguin hit. I knew why I was hit and it was because of the 500 directories I was added to by All the directories and linkwheel domains were banned at the same time the Penguin update came out. I didn't add my site to them, some idiot seo did but I had to pay the price. Fortunately I was able to remove every last link. On top of removing every link from the directories and link wheels I have received links from,, and several other authoritative websites. I have one of the most unique sites in my niche but unfortunately I barely rank for my brand name. If Google did a manual review of my site they would be a shamed that my site isn't ranking on the first page. I would put my link profile against the best. And yes, I have confirmed that I do not have a manual penalty. Google, come out with an update!!!!!

Patrick Altoft

05/02/2013 01:05 pm

Google has made it very clear that you can't recover until the algorithm runs again. It hasn't run since the disavow tool came out which is why most have not recovered. Also you can only recover when you remove the right links and unfortunately there is no trial & error process like you get with a manual penalty. People should wait until it runs again before they admit defeat. We have helped 35 sites recover from manual penalties in the past 6 months and most of them had given up hope before we got working on it.


05/02/2013 01:26 pm

Is google running the next penguin already at a it is showing very different results from the go and test your keywords and share with us how they are different


05/02/2013 01:31 pm

"...and especially not e-commerce" is the, in my opinion, 800 pound gorilla. There are some very big e-commerce sites that have abhorent (in a post-penguin mentality) linking practices and they will never be hit in any significant way. They play in an entirely different world than the small, out-of-my-living-room shops and those special considerations are bought and paid for. Work for an e-commerce outlet with a large AdWords spend and the difference in what you can do and 'get away with' is pretty remarkable. If you have the money to spend then you are a big brand in your industry/niche, that is basically a given (mom and pops can't afford to spend tens of thousands a month on adwords). And the happy coincidence of big brands skirting the guidelines and generally not being affected by the penalties continues. Sure, the penalty given to the big brand with the large ad spend and the small out-of-my-living-room shop may be exactly the same...and that is the problem. The penalty means absolutely nothing to the big brand but will destroy the small guy. There is no scale to the penalty and that is how Google can hide behind the 'same penalty for everyone commiting x offense' line. Put it into an offline situation: Big brand gets hit with a $30,000 municipal fine for issue x; small shop commits same violation (on a small shop scale) and they get hit with the same exact $30,000 fine. The big brand doesn't even slow its stride, the small shop either goes away or incurs hindering amounts of debt to deal with the sudden 30k in unbudgeted expenses. Change the enviroment and the nature of the penalties and we are back online. Rant over.

Praveen Sharma

05/02/2013 01:34 pm

Agreed. It's difficult to figure out which links made you penalized and to completely remove them.


05/02/2013 01:43 pm

Well ranted.

Michael Martinez

05/02/2013 01:48 pm

Well, as long as they are handling the algorithm offline, there can be no recovery in-between updates.

Akos Horvath

05/02/2013 01:50 pm

will do right now thanks man!


05/02/2013 02:08 pm

I absolutely don't want to sound like an advocate of Google, but I really can't understand what do you want from Google. You said : " ... municipal fine ... " Exactly. Government acts differently, because electors are involved. Who would vote for the Government, if fines would be equal ? Furthermore, who would pay welfare, if small business would be broken by the huge fine ? Same Government would. That's why fines are different for big brands and mom&pops. Now, how is this related to Google ? Google is a private company. Why do you expect it to act on a Government level ? Do you want it to be a new Government ? ) You blame Google for being an Internet Government in one thread and then blame it for not acting like a Government in another. What do you want from Google ?


05/02/2013 02:12 pm

i know this may sound like a cop-out, but anytime i have a website banned on google i just drop that website because i find it to, time consuming and frustrating doing all it takes to get it on google again, the one time i did get it back up it was never back to where it was before the ban..


05/02/2013 02:18 pm

Well at least I'm not the only one that feels this way, after a year of frustration; I also just realized that the chances of Recovery are pretty grimm.... Truly unfortunate :( I wish Google would just run the refresh so we all can just move one either with recovery or future endevors, good luck all!

Akos Horvath

05/02/2013 02:26 pm

Wow it is very different! My major keyword "tarps" that gives me 90% of my traffic is back on the second page! the second best "heavy duty tarps" is back on the first. I can work from here and add content etc, at least I have a starting point again if this is what to come. Thank you!


05/02/2013 02:36 pm

So why would FoxStart be right verse any other site like StartPage?


05/02/2013 02:42 pm

I want Google to enact penalties on a scale that makes sense. The same exact penalty for brand site x and small site y does not make sense in the context Google likes to couch their argument: "we don't favor brands, the same penalty for the same practice is fair". The same penalty across the board isn't fair; and they pretend it is. I wouldn't care if they were just the smallest bit transparant about how they actually operate: they don't bite the hand that feeds them...tens of thousands of dollars a month. Just tell us that and stop pretending to operate fairly across the board. There are special exceptions for brands who spend, I should know, I work for one and just payed the bill for April. Picking apart the example of fines because I used the word municipal is ridiculous. You are distracting from the point by assuming I literally want Google to act like a municipality (I don't, that is insane) and implying the difference between private business and municipality is unknown to me (it isn't and it wasn't even close to my point). So what do I want: I want them to stop pretending they are the even handed gatekeeper and to stop actively putting that message out to site owners.


05/02/2013 02:52 pm

Things are quite simple - it's their index and they can do whatever they want with it. If they decide to take out 10% of all internet sites, it's their index. People can only hope that some kind of competition pops up and takes 20% of the market from Google which is mission impossible in next 3-5 years.

Reality Check

05/02/2013 02:54 pm

Easier said than done Dale if your site is not simply something that you have created as part of a huge network. If you have a brand that is established and known by consumers that unfortunately gets caught up in Penguin, dropping the site is a much bigger problem than if you were simply an affiliate that knew that Google would catch up with you at some point.

Marie Haynes

05/02/2013 03:08 pm

Exactly. Once Penguin finally refreshes then I'm sure we will see some recoveries. The last time Penguin refreshed (October 5) we didn't have the disavow tool yet. This time there will be sites that were able to disavow all of their unnatural links so they should hopefully be able to recover.


05/02/2013 03:09 pm

"Things are quite simple - it's their index and they can do whatever they want with it." At the end of the day, what I or anyone else wants is pretty irrelevant; the quotes bit above is what it boils down to. Well said.


05/02/2013 03:13 pm

No, it's not ridiculous. Search problem in yourself, if you can't provide correct examples (wink)) And how do you suppose this scale should work ? Do you understand how algorithms work ? Did you create any ? Is it only size of the company, that disturbs you ? What Google shall do, if someone will say later: "Hey, this site was created by professional programmers, but I, being a baker, created mine by myself. We need another scale here." re : "... stop actively putting that message out to site owners ..." There are 100 000 000 websites online. What owners do you mean ? Do you mean those 20 guys from WebmasterWorld ? Or do you mean SEOs ? Most of them are not site owners. I never heard, that at least 1000 (from 100mio)) site owners signed kind of a petition, trying to attract attention to Google's false statements. Did you see something like this ? Please provide the link.


05/02/2013 03:14 pm



05/02/2013 03:19 pm

I have never violated Google guideline and my site is still there :) Rest in peace, you

Bill Nadraszky

05/02/2013 03:31 pm

Sad thing is that now that I have cleaned up my act as far as backlinking goes and built all the "social signals" especially through Google+ I am seeing people leapfrog past me on very competitive keywords with newer sites that rely on spamming guestbooks and other really obviously bad backlinking methods


05/02/2013 03:40 pm

Your page is over optimized for the word tarps and your anchor text is over optimized. It is no wonder you are having issues.

Akos Horvath

05/02/2013 03:53 pm

Rick I appreciate it, but my site is a one trick pony. I sell tarps, so I am struggling with not using the word tarps...:( every item I sell is called a tarp. so short of inventing a new name for it I am screwed. I will work on my anchor text next.


05/02/2013 03:56 pm

So, is it possible, that you stop flood the internet with meaningless blames, leading to nowhere ? )

Ben Pfeiffer

05/02/2013 03:57 pm

Of course, but I have my doubts that there will be a mass recovery of any kind. It will be spotty at best. I think some of these Penguin hit sites will never recover period.


05/02/2013 04:24 pm

It's not just about having a clean backlinking profile. Its about having a better backlinking profile then your competitors. You may not be penalized, but rather you might just have a lot of poor quality or not relevant links pointing to you.


05/02/2013 04:48 pm

'If you have no traffic to begin with how is improving conversion going to make much of a difference' Thank you! I have been arguing the same for the last year. All this talk about 'user experience' and 'good content' is practically useless if they cant find your site in the first place. The areas I deal in now come up with the big major players on the first page....Sears, Walmart, E-bay, etc. What rubs salt in the wound is that with half our main keywords the big players do not even sell the product in question, but apparently 'generic' is ok if you are a big name. We just cant compete when Google returns those sort of results.

Pierre M Fiorini

05/02/2013 05:22 pm

I had sites hit by Penguin - The "best recovery strategy" is simply to start over with a new Url. Now those new sites are getting more traffic than ever with, of course, a completely white hat linking strategy. "Cleaning up links", "link audits", etc., take way too much energy and are a waste of time. It's clear, once your site is "Penguinized", the site is torched forever. Period. Also, for folks waiting for that magical "refresh" now that your links abide by the guidelines...keep dreamin'...just saying...


05/02/2013 05:24 pm

Meaningless blaming to some; attempting to start a conversation with my (sometimes conflicting) opinions to others. You frustrate the hell out of me most times but you always bring some conversation with you so I can't be anything but grateful that you post here.

Pierre M Fiorini

05/02/2013 05:28 pm

I wish you were right, but I seriously doubt it. I am convinced the "disavow" tool was a ruse by Google to help them discover link networks, link schemes, etc. Now that have all this data that they can utilize this information in their algorithm to classify link networks with better precision. I.e., I don't think there will be any "recovery" for sites hit by Penguin.

Joe Youngblood

05/02/2013 05:31 pm

It would make little sense for Google to hurt websites and then stop running their algorithm In the time since Penguin 3 ran a lot of websites have popped-up to spam verticals that now have less competition. The payday loan space is rife with this kind of jackassery with domains just registered a few weeks ago ranking with a ton of exact match anchor backlinks from seedy websites and link networks. While the penguin sleeps Google's SERPs get worse and worse and provide a terrible user experience. No, it makes sense that Google would allow sites to recover and would continue looking for new websites trying to manipulate their ranking algorithm. Why this hasn't happened is anyone's guess. However, last year at this time Google had announced about 12 major updates, and so far this year only 2 (see the SEOMoz Google update history), also Panda is supposedly baked into the normal everflux algo now. So what are all of those Google engineers doing, besides playing with self-driving cars and snooping in peoples backyards? Well, my guess is they are testing and debating the virtues of a big update / set of updates.

Pierre M Fiorini

05/02/2013 05:31 pm

There will be no "recovery". I am convinced the "disavow" tool was a ruse by Google to help them discover link networks, link schemes, etc. Now that have all this data that they can utilize this information in their algorithm to classify link networks with better precision. Folks are dreaming if they are anticipating a "recovery" for sites hit by Penguin. My thoughts.

Kevin Gerding

05/02/2013 05:47 pm

The SERPS have become a corporate index void of many small businesses. Wise small business owners should focus on alternative traffic generation methods that welcome small business participation.

Ben Pfeiffer

05/02/2013 05:49 pm

Well if you take a grim look at it. What if Google didn't allow anyone to recover from Penguin. It's in their complete right to do so, and would represent a very hardline dark strategy on their part to deal with spam. It like in some middle east countries where if you are caught stealing, they literally still cut off your hand. You never get that back. There is no redemption. Now, I would like to think that this is not Google's ongoing modus operandi but who knows. The communication is still lacking from Google on many fronts despite there telling us they want to be more transparent. So we are left to speculate at this point.

Shashi Kant Srivastava

05/02/2013 05:53 pm

But I did --- A client was get penguin penalty --- his website keywords not in rank ---then he decided to give project me --- i analysed his website --- and remove penguin penalty -- my client is so happy with me ----


05/02/2013 06:38 pm

Boo to the spammer! Boo to the spammer! Shun, shun!


05/02/2013 06:42 pm

Hope springs eternal - there is a lot of pain and anguish that has been felt by many since the Penguin algorithm was unleashed on webmasters a little over a year ago. But take heart, people! I'd like to take a moment to refute the premise of the author of this post. Here are the facts: There have been many algorithm updates that have similiar, far-reaching effects. Have their been recoveries, I ask? A most resounding yes! Website owners have recovered from Panda, and website owners will recover from Penguin. Will everyone recover? No, not everyone will. But fortune favors those who don't quit. Not everyone is willing or can afford to stay in the game long enough to have a stab at recovery, but those who are committed and truly correct their faulty methods of manipulative SEO will likely have a "second chance". You should look no further than the example of a manual penalty revokation. Do those happen? Yes, they do! They happen because apparently Google believes that website owners deserve a second chance. If they believe that website owners deserve a second chance, then you can bet that the algorithm will reflect that as well. It's been over a year since the Penguin algo release. Google has made it abundantly clear by keeping suffering webmasters waiting that they should never spam Google ever again. That's part of the reason they haven't had a "real update" since it first came out. Many have learned their lessons, and turned away from spam activities. For those that have, and have cleaned up spammy links, made their website more user-friendly and linkable, your patience will pay off. Signed, The Penguin Pep Rally Ringleader

Michael Martinez

05/02/2013 08:31 pm

Trust me. Google didn't need anything like the Disavow tool to find link networks and schemes.

Michael Martinez

05/02/2013 08:32 pm

Of course, the people who were hit by Penguin were not practicing good SEO in the first place. Their collective track record for being nailed by search algorithms and wailing about their losses is immense, solid, and consistent.


05/02/2013 09:19 pm

Why is this even a discussion about "recovery" ? Maybe the way the system is set up has just CHANGED, and the real story should be adapting to the new moving forward?

Tim J

05/02/2013 09:20 pm

LOL or maybe your just wrong.....


05/02/2013 09:21 pm

Hey Barry - How about you email Google as you have posted before that you can contact these people and ask when the refresh will be? Also ask whether they expect sites will recover or not? These penalties are truly overwhelming!! Thanks :)

Barry Schwartz

05/02/2013 09:23 pm

I've asked. They tell me they do not have a date. At best, I would know a few hours before they release it. At best. And honestly, 99.999% of the time, I only find out about these updates until after I ask them if there was something on X. Otherwise, they rarely ever give me those details.


05/02/2013 09:26 pm

Spoken like a guy who believes his reality is THE reality. Nice use of the wrong form of YOU'RE, by the way


05/02/2013 09:28 pm

Thanks Barry! This is what I assumed but thought I ask..... Please keep us updated, like always :) But for now I am tired of waiting for something in which there is no guarantee, time to find a job LOL - just thought we had a chance to recover since revoking our Manual penalty, but who knows?

Tim J

05/02/2013 09:35 pm

hahhaa good one! Unfortunately many need to remove the Penguin filter and those that have been affected will surely adapt to the new system your talking about but until removing the filter it doesn't matter what SYSTEM these sites use, there is no traffic / serp movement b/c of penalty.... so "recovery" / refresh would be needed. Thanks for the correcting my grammer :)

Ben Pfeiffer

05/02/2013 10:29 pm

So are you the one keeping track of these people? It would serve you well to be more open-minded about this topic. I have personally worked with clients that were hit and did not participate in anything nefarious. The issue is complex and people are wanting to know if its possible for a recovery at some point.


05/02/2013 10:45 pm

You're welcome )


05/02/2013 11:05 pm

"You could throw 1000 of the best authoritative .edu links to your website and it might not even move the traffic needle a fraction." There's your problem. People who have no clue about real, sustainable SEO making outrageous claims about death by Penguin then pointing to the notion that they assumed they could use old school myopic and critically flawed methods to recover. Epic hilarity there. wow.


05/02/2013 11:59 pm

I just wish the refresh would run and either put me out of my misery or let me get on with my life. I never received notice of any kind from Google, but I found well over a thousand questionable links that I DID NOT INITIATE, the "farm" (directory, to put it loosely) just linked to me. I managed to get them to delete the links. Other than that, I have always just written content for my informational site, never really did SEO to speak of at all. Had consistently climbing rankings, than BAM. Penguin dropped my hits 70%. Now the big article farms that have been scraping and regurgitating my articles, in some cases copy and paste, have top rankings and I am off the charts. Furthermore, for the same subject and keyword, a large site's page that has an EMPTY database template is #1 in the search and my page which is loaded with excellent content is nowhere. Sure wish someone could explain this to me. I have no doubt it was penguin, the drop on 4/24 was clear and severe.


05/03/2013 12:21 am

You seriously advertise like that on a SEO blog? You really are bad at your job if you think that will get you business.


05/03/2013 12:53 am

according to Google their algorithm is a work in progress and they themselve admit that sometimes innocent bystanders get taken down.

Alex - BFS

05/03/2013 02:34 am

I agree with this article in some aspects but for those of us that know how to adapt and work around Google's updates can bring their websites back, and grow even larger. A site may never recover to it's old position but a good SEO developer should be able to find new avenues to optimize.

Heather Stone

05/03/2013 04:20 am

Hi Ben, A scary post to say the least. I'm wondering if you've heard any other suggestions beyond "conversion optimization." As you say, this would seem to require traffic to optimize conversion from. I suppose it's possible increased social media traffic and sharing could fill some of the gap taken away as a result of lower ranking. But I've not seen too many sites myself, even those with relatively low ranking, where search engine traffic was not a pretty important part of the equation.


05/03/2013 04:22 am

same for me I never recovered from the penguin update. It's even getting worse and worse. Also I noticed a lot of the same domain names since the penguin update in the google results for certain niches especially tourism-branche

Seriously Spain

05/03/2013 05:22 am

That's why I don't concentrate on Google at all on any of my sites. I do very well from Yahoo and Bing, so all my efforts are concentrated on making sure Yahoo and Bing pick up my sites. My income has improved quite drastically. In fact, I don't use Google search for anything anymore and I avoid their search engine like the plague.

Arun Jaiswal

05/03/2013 05:22 am

FEW month back MC[matt cutt] already advised to BUY NEW Domain, if the website get affected with PANADA and Penguin, 301 direction won't work at that will bring the SPAM history to NEW Domain. It is like, to build NEW building from SCRATCH, if building get Destroyed after earthquake. We could compare this PANDA and PENGUIN UPDATE with earthquake. SOME unluky Building get Destroyed and some do not have any affect.

Seriously Spain

05/03/2013 05:24 am

Yep. Google is now one big scam. Right before I stopped using it, nothing was coming up for me in search except mega-corporations like TripAdvisor, eHow and Ebay -- all paying Google to put them higher in search and all serving content I have NO interest in reading. Bing, btw, is awesome. Good search results and no scamming.

Arun Jaiswal

05/03/2013 05:28 am

This is your frustration, We can not ignore and UNDO GOOGLe as it HOLd Maximum Search market Share. Although google is also ADOPTING the Process of yahoo and BING... BOTH yahoo and BING is mainly focus on PPC campaign,, they do not bother ON Organic result.and after PAND and Penguine Google is also running on same.PATH

Jack Hutchinson

05/03/2013 10:09 am

But unfortunately your potential customers don't, and although you may do well from Bing & Yahoo your business will never achieve its full potential if you ignore Google! Harsh but true!


05/03/2013 10:53 am

Anthony Shapley got one of our clients out of Penguin, so it is possible - as long as they run the update again!

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 11:10 am

The point is that Google's machine learning algorithms are likely much more efficient in identifying paid links, link networks, etc., given all the "free" data from the disavow tool. I'm like 99.9% sure about that, which is not good news for SEO.

Sourabh Rana

05/03/2013 11:57 am

Hi arun, This is my que if we create new domain & redirect old one to new one is the SPAM history will effect our new website as well or not ? or new website will be created by google as a new website ? what is the best answer

John Britsios

05/03/2013 12:14 pm

I fully agree with you Alan! I have a customer who have been hit last year in April by the Penguin, and I am fully confident that he will recover. I bookmarked this post to revisit after the next Penguin refresh or update, to share what happened.

John Britsios

05/03/2013 12:20 pm

I fully disagree with your claim that if a site was affected by the Penguin would be torched for ever. If you are assuming that, does not mean that it is fact. For now, stay tuned. I will revisit this thread and share some news, short after the next Penguin refresh or update, without fear that I may spoil my reputation.

John Britsios

05/03/2013 12:28 pm

The only sites that cannot recover are the ones who have no clue how to analyze and solve the problems that caused their disaster.

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 12:36 pm

Well, I respectfully disagree with you, but I'd be interested to hear your results - good or bad

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 12:46 pm

Why don't I believe you. With the same Url? Really?

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 12:51 pm

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 01:00 pm

So, what are you "BING IT ON"??? LOL

Joshua Price

05/03/2013 01:37 pm

I know that when I was spinning content, before the panda/penguin update. SEO was easy. I don't know about you guys, but I did something that did manage to get a few sites I worked with out of the panda box. I began writing unique content, and posting them to my network so they could be indexed and hopefully the 1000+ spun articles I wrote would fade away. To me, I think the best method would be to write unique content and hope for the best. That should be the first step into getting someone back on their feet.

John Britsios

05/03/2013 01:39 pm

I will announced the results no matter if good or bad. Promise.

Michael Martinez

05/03/2013 01:40 pm

As a matter of fact I do take names. It would serve you well to do the same.

Michael Martinez

05/03/2013 01:41 pm

They already know about the links if you're in the position of having to use the Disavow tool. I am one of many people who personally lobbied Matt Cutts over the years to make such a tool available. I know how long it has taken to get such a tool into the hands of Webmasters.

Joshua Price

05/03/2013 01:42 pm

yeah, the broken english and "SEO" was a dead giveaway. Nice try.

Michael Martinez

05/03/2013 01:43 pm

Conspiracy theory-based SEO has never worked. You would do yourself and your clients better service by backing away from these "Google is out to get us all" points of view and taking a more rational look at what is going on in the search universe. Google may have motivated people to cheat the system but it didn't force them to.

Michael Martinez

05/03/2013 01:44 pm

Yes. I'm really surprised to see Barry publish a guest post of this low quality on SE Roundtable. But, whatever.

Trevor Nelson

05/03/2013 01:45 pm

This is just sensationalist bullshit. I've recovered client sites from Penguin, and have heard of plenty of others. The algo just hasn't fired in a while so everyone's all hot and bothered. Unfortunately, there have also been plenty of shoddy SEO. The problem generally seems that too many people think you can still be successful online without actively building a brand.

John Britsios

05/03/2013 02:00 pm

Michael I do not think it is fair to blame Barry for posting this low quality in yours and my eyes story. He simply shared what is being discussed in different forums. Did he claim that a recovery is possible or not possible? If I did not miss something, he did not. In my opinion I think we should be grateful for his efforts to share with us the news around our industry. Don't you think?

Barry Schwartz

05/03/2013 02:03 pm

Yea, Ben did a good job explaining the sentiment in the forum. Plus, look at all the comments and discussion. :)

Marcus Miller

05/03/2013 02:18 pm

There is just so much confusion regarding what constitutes a recovery and in all honesty, the only people that seem to get the recovery they want are folks who were wrongly penalised like WPMU. In that case, they picked up some problems, but had an expansive link profile of good quality, natural links and tons of great content. So, WPMU suffered and recovered after some aggressive widget / footer links were removed but how does that compare to most businesses hit by Penguin? Most sites that have failed to recover simply don't have anything good going for them from a link profile perspective and just so much bad that they are going to struggle. I still see the mentality out there that people don't want to remove those bad links as they 'might be helping' and people are scared to pull them when really, they are going to want to be absolutely brutal - if it is not editorial, and you are twelve months down the road - pull it. I have worked with a few sites who had a network and were able to remove lots of sitewide and footer links and recover some of the big terms they are seemingly punished for but they have not regained all original traffic from this. I have also played with other sites and have removed all the links (killed a 301 from originally penalised site) and the traffic has not moved in either direction which makes me believe that penguin is simply removing the equity in a lot of cases. Recovery it would seem is possible, only if there is something to recover to - that is, if you have mostly good links but have topped them up with some not good ones / techniques. If you don't have this, then you either need to get it or just start again as it's easier to build something up with no negative equity tying you down. It is also of note that most sites have a multifactorial problem - content issues (panda), link issues (penguin), manual penalties, technical issues and much more. Simply, removing a few links is not going to help in these cases. It's been a brutal 12 months out there for many smaller businesses who have never really done any inbound marketing, content etc and have just purchased SEO that worked but now has kicked them square in the balls.


05/03/2013 02:39 pm

It's like to share what admin of the internet café thinks about the 4G technology ) I suspect, that Barry has kind of interest to promote forums, that belong to Jim Boykin. Furthermore, such topics will always bring a buzz. Yellow press factor ) The funniest thing is, that in a couple of years, you - guys doing SEO, will be out of market. Simply because there will be no such market as SEO. But Barry still will be up with his non-profit, personal blog ) You must study from Barry, guys ) I do already )


05/03/2013 03:58 pm

"All this talk about 'user experience' and 'good content' is practically useless if they cant find your site in the first place" - Google have an answer for this and it's called Adwords. If you can't afford it then you're not a big enough brand for Google to bother with anyway. They've put their foot down this time. If you're e-commerce, affiliate, or traffic=revenue based at all, then get ready to churn out low cost viral content on a daily basis or start funneling your entire budget into Adwords :(

Ben Pfeiffer

05/03/2013 04:04 pm

Exactly as Barry has said below. We are reporting what is being said in the forums, that has been the mission here at SE Roundtable for the 8 years I have been editor here. The discussion has been great so far.

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 04:13 pm

Obviously, they know about the links, but for most of the web, Google did not know for sure (not with 95%+ certainty anyway) which sites give out paid links and which ones did not (but for many sites, they do now!) . The disavow tool is NOT a good thing for SEO's - the less information Google has - the better it is for all of us. I.e., the harder we have to make them work, the better it is for all of us. Think about it - now with all this data they can better classify sites that give out paid links using their data mining algorithms and then incorporate this information into their Penguin update. Maybe that's why this Penguin update has been taking longer than expected. I suspect they are "fine tuning" their algorithms in order to minimize collateral damage to innocent websites given all this free data given to them by SEO's.

Ben Pfeiffer

05/03/2013 04:13 pm

This is just a fun discussion. No need to take everything so seriously Michael. Of course I don't believe in conspiracy theories or that Google is out to get anyone. Chill out.

M-j Taylor

05/03/2013 04:17 pm

Your POV is valid if there is a very limited market or if the company is trying to monopolize the market. But for many businesses, the desire to expand infinitely is not the best profit model. And where the market is huge, Bing and Y! can provide enough traffic.

M-j Taylor

05/03/2013 04:18 pm



05/03/2013 04:24 pm

What link building is White Hat? If you mean creating content that attracts links, well that's Chloroox White, of course, But if you are "building links" for SEO, Google doesn't seem to like it ...

M-j Taylor

05/03/2013 04:25 pm

What link building is White Hat? If you mean creating content that attracts links, well that's Chlorox White, of course, But if you are "building links" for SEO, Google doesn't seem to like it ...

Pierre M Fiorini

05/03/2013 04:41 pm

That's not quite true. Building content that attracts links is difficult, but can be done. There are link-building techniques that are "White Hat". For instance, "Guest Posting" is one strategy (as long as you don't go crazy and spin the same article and post it on every site you can find). Here is what Matt Cutts says about this: .There are other strategies as well.


05/03/2013 06:38 pm

LOL )) Could you please provide link where it's possible to see your latest activity as an editor here ?

Barry Schwartz

05/03/2013 06:40 pm

He is right, he's been writing here on and off since 2004 See


05/03/2013 08:20 pm

Thank you ) Let's see : MOST RECENT ENTRIES by Ben Pfeiffer May 2, 2013 October 30, 2012 August 12, 2011 "We are reporting" sounds a bit .... false ?? ... inaccurate ?? ) Well, probably Mr.Pfeiffer just feels time somehow different )

Barry Schwartz

05/03/2013 08:22 pm

I still love you.

John Britsios

05/03/2013 08:29 pm

You said: "The disavow tool is NOT a good thing for SEO's - the less information Google has - the better it is for all of us." Did you probably mean, not a good thing for crap-hat SEOs and spammers? The more information Google has - the better for all ethical SEOs and innocent searchers.


05/03/2013 09:22 pm


05/03/2013 09:49 pm

Michael, I'm ashamed of you. "personally lobbied Matt Cutts over the years to make such a..." Oh wait. I love that Google finally made it available. :-) #Nevermind


05/03/2013 11:20 pm

Many SEOs know when evaluating competitors to consider indirect and direct competition as carefully as direct competition. Competition from substitutes can occur at many levels, including product, ingredient, service, and location. Therefore it's only natural for post penguin effected sites to be disadvantaged and perhaps effected for the long term against substitutes who where not in the short. I question the time and effort v.s the reward surrounding the business and marketing objective.


05/04/2013 05:04 am

Forgive me for the seemly stupid question , but what is "conversion optimization"?


05/04/2013 05:08 am

Your missing out on a lot of traffic then. You do realize that Google accounts for just over 67% of all internet searches alone? Bing and Yahoo COMBINED make up another 28% The remaining 5% is everyover search engine combined (eg: dogpile and ASK)


05/04/2013 05:14 am

Michael, that's the first time I have EVER heard anyone calling something low quality by a that is published in SER. The whole point isn't about grammar or whatever, but to generate ideas and discussion to improve or think outside of the box. I am surprised Barry himself hasn't replied to you though. I know I would!

Pierre M Fiorini

05/04/2013 09:52 am

The problem is that innocent sites always get hit in these recent Penguin updates. Google used to ignore "bad" links (for the most part) simply because they didn't have enough information to do anything one way or the other. Regrettably, now they do.


05/04/2013 11:17 am

This is someone can sell to unprofessionals (aka mom&pops) instead of search engine optimization. SEO by SEOs is dead, but they still want to eat. They need new product to sell. Here it is - conversion optimization. It's like CFD was offered to the market, when interest to Forex went down.


05/04/2013 11:39 am

BTW, since you're in the financial market ... As you should know, there are two types of the financial market participants - those who trade and those who do know how to trade successfully, but somehow they don't want to trade and they sell their "knowledge" to believers. Exactly the same is with SEOs. The know how, but don't want to, for their own reasons ) So, we can expect more magic "know how" products on the web market.

Michael Martinez

05/04/2013 02:33 pm

Ben, I'm sorry for shooting the messenger. You're right.


05/04/2013 04:51 pm

Our omniture page views on our ebay store look just as what is described here about the google problem. July 17th 2012 we were at our peak and then the fast decline began with august and September step down to a October flat line. We have had a flat line on traffic ever since. The only change we are now having resembles an irregular heart beat. we have began changing our product images to a white back ground for the months of March & April. these two months look like a defibrillator hit them. Half of our 1000 listings still have a dark gray background. its a lot of work to change pictures all the way yet. Do any of you fellow ebay sellers think all of our demise on ebay is actually this google problem described here on this site?

Faust Principe

05/05/2013 12:29 pm

dear google please have mercy on small time earners making a living online

John Britsios

05/05/2013 01:47 pm

I started a survey with one single question: "Do you believe web sites can recover from the Google Penguin Algorithm?" Would appreciate if you could drop your opinion there too:


05/06/2013 01:20 am

I don't think it's possible to recover from Panda, Penguin as can be attested to from the sites I own. All hit by Google, a year later all still suffering. And no, mine are not spam sites -- they're all huge authority sites, I don't have paid links, I don't spin content etc. But Google doesn't like me. Needless to say, I detest Google and everything they stand for. Bing is now my search engine of choice. Hope Google dies a firey death :)

Graham Ginsberg

05/06/2013 01:50 am

I got hit really hard by G Penguin. Mine was a very popular website in Naples dealing with real estate and when 24 Apr 2012 came, I dropped by about 70% in about 200 keywords. Its been a slow decline way worse than even 6 months ago. Its so bad now, I wonder the purpose of keeping the site running, yet nobody has pointed to a problem and I can show tens of other site, with paid backlinks, links farms and schemes, that were not hit and continue to rank on top of G's list. It sickens me that there is no recovery and that there is no level playing ground. I recently asked what they considered my options were. This is their response: "I think you would be best of with a new site, recovering often doesn't work but at least you can try it by disavowing your links in Google Webmasters, I can’t help you with that I’m afraid as I’m way too busy and it’s pretty time consuming checking which links are good and which are not. That’s why it’s often easier/cheaper to build a new website. Kind regards, Dennis".

Joe Boylan

05/07/2013 07:47 am

Penguin puts a ceiling on your rank that will not be removed until the next update, assuming you've made the needed changes. People talk about recovering: there are only two forms of recovery: recover from manual, and partial algorithm recovery. Wonder why you get so close to the first page but can't get there? There is a swapping system in place that prohibits first page presence in cases where google flags you as spammy for certain keywords. This is why you see so many shit sites on the first page. They get the position you would otherwise get, and you get theirs. Then the same phenomenon happens for second page, third page .....


05/07/2013 01:27 pm

Google has become a Hybrid Search Engine nor based on algorithms but relationships. Ecommerce - Amazon(IMDB, Zappos) and the ChanelAdviser affilates such as Sears, Overstock ect Real Estate:, Zillow, Trulia ect (local agents that actually know the market are buried) You can continue down the line on industries. If a company is publicly traded or involved with Google they get precedence as Google can double end the money. Notice that all these changes came as Matt Cutts became a face for politics giving gray information to put webmasters at bay. 3 former members of the Google board of directors are from Amazon Now enter the Kindle with the Google OS - get it. Now include 22 lobbyist firms in Washington DC and an FCC that got their hands tied. The US Government and EU now lack the money and legal teams to deal with the challenges. The more people dig into this the sadder it becomes. Unfortunately Google now runs the world wide web and they closed there emails, phones and customer service off to only PAY PER CLICK. Before Penguin they increased there PPC sales staff for the EU in Wroclaw Poland because they knew exactly what they were doing. If you want to see the real Google just look outside the US where they exploit countries faster and with more ease. Once they gain trust and market share - they flip the switch. They know once they dump small business they have to pay more. On the flip side they gain more power from the big companies they promote. GAME OVER - Smartest Company on the Plant.


05/07/2013 03:48 pm

Are you replying to my comment? Yes he got a website with the same domain name out of a Penguin based penalty.

Fred Gerratti

05/07/2013 05:15 pm

I agree with you Bill. Google is nothing more than trying to make money for themselves and killing small businesses. After hard work I put into my site and following all shady guidelines of Google, I now realize it will never make a difference. Google's goal is to show the worse results along with the biggest brands in search results so the small guys have to pay to get their content shown. Anyone small business that says its possible to recover rankings is full of it. Sooner or later the rest of the small website owners will realize ranking in Google is becoming short of impossible and they will stop writing content. Google will eventually make the internet a desert because useful content writers just wont bother writing anymore. The end user will then see this and it will be the death of Google. Every bubble bust, Google's will be coming sooner or later for their shady practices.


05/08/2013 04:49 pm

Duplicate content maybe? You have a bunch of pages that have identical, short, keyword focused content--the only difference is the size of the tarp. Could you consolidate all tarps of the same design onto one page and offer different sizes? For example, why are these two separate pages, identical content except for the size of tarp (16x18 vs. 16x20): "These vinyl covers are 10oz per square yard. All the seams are heat sealed for a clean looking durable finish, and the hems are web reinforced. There are brass grommets all around every 2 feet. Black color is attractive and blends into all environments. Super durable item when installed properly." "These vinyl covers are 10oz per square yard. All the seams are heat sealed for a clean looking durable finish, and the hems are web reinforced. There are brass grommets all around every 2 feet. Black color is attractive and blends into all environments. Super durable item when installed properly." This looks like Panda bait.


05/09/2013 07:33 pm

lol comment of the day.

Graham Ginsberg

05/10/2013 01:26 am

Very true. Since Penguin Tulia and Zillow hardly would show in SW Florida real estate searches. Now they're all over and the rest are mediocre sites that had done zero SEO in the past or those who got lucky with their paid links an link farms, not to have gotten caught.

Graham Ginsberg

05/10/2013 01:32 am

I agree with "Real Estate:, Zillow, Trulia ect (local agents that actually know the market are buried)" These big companies are Advertisers not agents. They shouldn't even have access to listings. They also sell advertising Back to the same agents that supplied the listings.


05/10/2013 02:20 am

That's why I don't worry about Google anymore and concentrate on Bing and Yahoo instead (both are seeing growth in search as more and more people see what Google are doing to small businesses). I've been incredibly happy with the results on almost all my sites once I stopped worrying about "what Google wants". Before I changed my strategy, Google says 'you need backlinks', so I spent weeks getting backlinks. Result? No change. Google says "content is king", so I spent months adding several thousand pages of unique content all written by me and all from the 'expert stance' that Google wants. Result? No change. And on and on. It suddenly dawned on me there would never be any change because I'm a 'small business' and Google doesn't make enough money from me. Not when they can shove EBay, Amazon and Trip Advisor at the top of every search I do. So.....I ditched Google and started using Bing and Yahoo for everything. Opened an account at Bing Webmaster Tools and spent my time writing good content that I wanted to write instead of wasting it trying "to figure out what Google wants". Result? Visitors to all my main sites have doubled in number in just over a month and most are now coming from Bing and Yahoo. My strategy is definitely working and that's how I'll continue. Screw Google. One of the most immoral countries on the planet. And, btw, if you still use Google search, you're just helping them keep doing what they're doing.


05/10/2013 02:28 am

And while everyone thinks like that, Google will continue to control the market. I refuse to support Google by using their search engine or by worrying about what they want and, if more people did that, Google's power would diminish. Quickly. Since I targeted Yahoo and Bing instead (Bing Webmaster Tools are amazing. far better than crappy Google Analytics by the way), I saw my traffic double on all my sites in just over a month. My strategy is working for me, so I will continue to use it.


05/10/2013 02:29 am

Wow, you're rude.


05/10/2013 02:32 am

You do realize Google runs new algorithms every few days right? If his site hasn't recovered by now, it's not going to. According to Matt Cutts, there are more than 200 Google algorithms and updates run every year. The last big one is in October, but small ones are done every couple of days.


05/10/2013 08:17 am

I can attest that it is possible to recover from Panda, at least partially. After creating a new domain, moving content up with the ads, and fixing bad links, etc. my traffic is now 80% of what it was before the penalty. I don't anticipate fully recovering because I was ranking high with key words that didn't really relate with the site.


05/10/2013 09:49 am

LOL, you created a new domain. So, no, your old domain did not recover.


05/14/2013 05:26 pm

If the person posing the question is wanting to know only specifically about a domain, then yes, the old domain didn't recover. However, if they were wanting to know if a small business' website can ever recover, then yes, it is possible.

Gail Gardner

05/15/2013 05:57 pm

What I wrote back when we were still calling Panda Farmer about what Google's true intentions are - and that sites don't recover proves I am correct. When what someone says disagrees with what they do - always believe what they DO to be the truth. Google is systematically taking their insider knowledge of what keyword phrases convert and handing that valuable traffic over to their big brand buddies. Panda hit THEIR COMPETITORS. Go back and look at it and use some common sense and you can prove I'm right about this. Start here >> Google does not care about you or me or small business. They are a monopoly that controls who gets found online. There is only one defence. Teach everyone you know to use alternatives and take away that power. Yes, I know it is easier to just use Google stuff. Yes, I know you have to pay for other solutions and theirs are "free". Nothing is ever free. You DO pay - just not with dollars. Eventually the cost will be our freedom of choice and then our freedom. Decision time. Will you keep riding the train over the cliff or get off and start walking toward independence?

Gail Gardner

05/15/2013 06:05 pm

That is not a stupid question, and it is NOT a scam so don't listen to those who badmouth it. Conversion optimization is improving your site so that the real buyers who come there end up making more purchases. It is extremely valuable to site owners - and especially ecommerce sites. The average site only converts 1-2% of visitors to buyers. Well optimized sites can easily double that and often increase conversions many times over. Major ecommerce sites like Amazon test everything and know that changing the size, position, color and wording of the button you use to put products in their shopping carts can increase sales. So can making a site easier to use, improving the search function, offering related products (called cross-selling and up-selling), and reducing the number of steps in the checkout process. Being able to convert more visitors to buyers is even more important as Google takes away more and more of your traffic. You also need to build email lists and learn to use email marketing to drive repeat sales.

Gail Gardner

05/15/2013 09:51 pm

The temporary solution is to keep finding long tail keyword phrases that have not yet been broad matched. As soon as Google takes the converting phrases away and hands them to big brands you won't consistently get traffic on those, so you have to use many modified, related phrases to replace that traffic. The problem with this solution is that you'll eventually run out of phrases. At that point you may have to change products or business models or replace search traffic with other sources (which of course don't convert as well as search so you need a lot more of them).

Gail Gardner

05/15/2013 09:52 pm

The problem with AdWords is Google has broad matched them to death. Worse than that, is the sneaky distribution fraud issue that takes money out of the pockets of advertisers. The large brands don't care and don't notice, but that can severely injure small businesses.

Gail Gardner

05/15/2013 09:57 pm

Many aren't thinking about the long term ramifications of this link disavow tool. Just as bloggers click spam with wild abandon and get the best commenters flagged by Akismet, people will take the easy way out and disavow links willy-nilly. That data will then most likely to be used against any site - totally legit, honest, white-hat sites - that end up being disavowed by people who have no idea how to tell whether a link is "good" or "bad". Google won't care if that happens because their corporate buddies' sites will be manually protected and even if all the little sites in the world get penalized so much the better for the big boys. When will small businesses and individuals get a clue and stop handing them even more ammunition to use against us all?


05/16/2013 02:54 am

Thank you very much Gail, and I really appreciate the detailed explaination. I think we have been doing these already, I/ we just didnt know the fancy terms for it. We must be doing something right as our conversion rate is double digits not 1% or 2%. Also we made a point of making pretty much every area of our site to be within 3 clicks of each other, with the exception of the checkout which is 4 steps (I think).

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:14 pm

Trevor, did the sites you recovered from Penguin recover after a penguin algo push was released? Like in October? or did they recover after October? I have been working on a recovery for 3 months and have seen no movement. I am hoping when this new Penguin update comes out in "the next few weeks" I will see some improvement. But I can't seem to figure out if recovery has to wait for Google to push a new algo or it can happen anytime?

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:15 pm

David, Did he have to wait until Google pushed an update to see the recovery?

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:18 pm

Joe, How do you know the ceiling will not be removed until the next update? Is this based on sites you have recovered?

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:23 pm

Do you have any evidence that this is the case BGG? I have been trying to find any documented evidence that recovery is or isn't possible until a manual penguin update, but I can not find anything but conjecture and theory. Myself I thought the algorithm would be running all the time re-evaluating sites using the Penguin rules - so recovery should be possible at any time. But many people say recovery requires Google to push an update.

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:30 pm

Yeah, I'm not real keen on dropping my site that I have had since 1996 and starting over... I have spent months on my link profile. I had no paid links or crappy link farm links, all links from legit businesses, but they were all keyword heavy exact term links so I think that's why I got hit by the algo. I am really hoping this algo refresh they are promising in the next few weeks shows recovery. I must have emailed 4000 people and got them to change the link text from keywords to the which is supposed to be acceptable.

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:33 pm

Are you sure there can be no recovery between updates?

Wesley Warren

05/17/2013 06:36 pm

Patrick, when and where did Google make it clear you can't recover until the algorithm runs again??? I have been looking for verification of this and can not find it anywhere! Did they make this statement somewhere?

Todd Southwick

05/21/2013 11:32 pm

Ok now, I am not a big fan of Google either. But the penguin penalty mostly targeted really egregious link spam. Exact match anchor text from irrelevant crap domains or domains that exist purely for the purpose of creating links. You can recover from penguin by removing links. But, if you remove the links you no longer have the links you needed to rank in the first place. Considering the quality of the links that got you into penguin hell, you didn't really think replacing them with more crap was going to bring you back, right? Bottom line. Don't get into SEO with no budget. It just pushes you towards spam crap that eventually will get you. If you have no budget, just focus on content. Or do something else, because you have no money.

Michael Martinez

05/22/2013 10:51 pm

Am I sure there can be no recovery between updates? Yes. Does my being sure make me right? No. But the handful of vaguely-worded responses from Googlers about how Penguin works have suggested that nothing changes until they run the algorithm offline again. Based on that, I would infer there cannot be any true recoveries. Then again, you hear things every once in a while....


05/24/2013 06:35 am

Does anyone have any updates since Google refreshed Penguin two days go, in particular in relation to Webpages recovering or the disavov tool? I read an article on Mashable where it tells you to dilute anchor text so no term is more than 2% of overall inbound links. They suggest doing that via deleting links and adding new links of varying anchor text. I wonder if it is an acceptable strategy to go back and edit anchor text in articles etc. and dilute things that way? We have some good articles out there and it seems a shame to delete all these links.

Ben Pfeiffer

05/24/2013 04:46 pm

People are still reviewing the data and it will take a couple days to fully understand the full impact of Penguin 2.0. That being said, I think the telling "lack of" anything positive in terms of recoveries is pretty telling. We do see lots of reports of websites dropping but nothing significant in terms of recoveries. It looks like my post above was pretty accurate way early. I do hope I am wrong and we see more positive stories emerge soon.

Arun Jaiswal

05/31/2013 05:22 am

Certainly NEW Domain get Hit by Spamy history of OLD domain..

Vinton Samms

06/16/2013 04:12 am

This is really a problem that needs serious consideration. if persons were using unorthodox methods to get ranked, then goggle has the power as the owner of the platform to fix it so that its users can get quality information and who would not like to search and get information that is of a high quality and useful. I guess Google is protecting its users, whoever those might be. The only solution to this is to start doing the thing the proper way so that your customers can get value. Forget about the money for the time being because that is an inevitable consequence of doing things the right and proper way. Vinton

David Whitehouse

06/19/2013 04:26 pm

Yes, had to wait for Penguin to run.

Joe Boylan

06/21/2013 02:42 am

Yes. My main site was bottlenecked at the top of the second page until penguin 2. I tried everything meanwhile, but no effect until P2. Now it's back to page 1. Same thing happened to my other site n

Joe Boylan

06/21/2013 02:57 am

Was it a manual penalty? If so yes you can recover from it, but rarely fully. If it was algo penalty, you have a snowballs's chance in hell of a full recovery EVEN if you add more hq links. Google caps your max rank.


06/21/2013 04:44 am

can you please provide the mashable link?

Gail Gardner

07/01/2013 06:35 pm

Yes, you have been doing conversion optimization without knowing the term for it. The fewer steps in a checkout process the less change someone changes their mind. That is why Amazon offers a one-step checkout.

David Whitehouse

08/07/2013 12:29 pm

No it was Penguin.


09/22/2013 08:48 am

All of these webmasters doing is from google. Remember google favors exact match domains. And now they are penalizing EMD. Remember google favors websites with plenty of links. And now google does not even know whats good or bad links. Google just want money!!!! Its just favoring big sites. Its time to move on.. stop using google services.


09/25/2013 03:37 pm

yes, that is what I agree!

Brown trout

10/05/2013 04:16 am

"Forget about the money for the time being because that is an inevitable consequence of doing things the right and proper way." Not really, I was doing everything "right" no spammy links, growing slowly, busting my behind for the last 6 months. Thousands of hours and dollars of content writing and video production, as of today my website can no longer be found in google for my standard search terms.. Because of this update 10-04 2013, i will be filing bankruptcy most likely. All because I cut no corners and spent all my time "doing it right". I am a professional in my field, there is no site on the internet in my niche that is comparable, What was free content to users, will now be taken offline and put into an expensive book. That is my only hope at this point.


03/10/2014 05:04 pm

learn to speak fucking English and perhaps google will favor you ESL POS


05/08/2014 07:56 pm

It has taken two years, but my site has finally recovered after being wrongfully caught in the Penguin net. I know it was wrong, I have never violated the policies Penguin went after. I have just kept doing what I have always done - write good original content. I am finally well on my way to my best year, but of course that does not give me back what I could have gained in the last 2 years!


06/18/2014 11:53 pm

care to share the details?

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