Earlier this year Google started sending out link warnings to webmasters who might have bad links pointing back to them. They were encouraged to take action to remove those links lest they get penalised, and this was later ramped up with the introduction of the webspam fighting Penguin. But, at the end of last week Google sent out yet another round of link warnings, only to tell people that those warnings could effectively be ignored. Confused? You’re not alone…
If you were the recipient of an earlier warning you’ve hopefully already started to take action, so the latest (non) warning could leave you in something of a tailspin. It’s only adding to the confusion in an already confused industry—SEOs are wondering just what they have to do to get back into Google’s good books, and the additional clarification hasn’t been all that clear. Apparently, you only need to take specific action if you’ve also noticed a drop in search traffic, despite the fact that the latest warning is worded in exactly the same way as the previous one.
This issue is only heightened by the fact that some link directories are actually charging people to get their links removed, and a lot of people are worried about the possibility of negative SEO putting their site at risk. Then there are some SEOs that are heading into a panic and trying to get links taken down from every possible source, even quality sites—it’s all getting a bit much, so what are you actually supposed to do?
Well, despite the fact that Google said you can effectively ignore the latest round of warnings, if you’ve been engaging in shady practices it’s still important to take action. Take a look at your link profile and if you’ve got any dodgy links coming in you need to get them removed (or, if you can’t, let Google know and see what they can do), and ultimately try to make sure you’re getting links as naturally as possible. Hopefully the confusion will lessen over the coming weeks and months, or else we’ll just see what Google comes up with next…
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