Interesting case of Link Building getting a client penalised in Google.
Some months ago one of my client got a manual penalty in Google. He had used a company called Just Search based in Manchester to improve his organic SEO.
Just Search had done a minimal amount of work on his site including Link Building.
Once we knew there was a problem we started to look at the link profile he had. To our amazement we found that all the back links built for him during 2012-13 were coming from Sites registered in India.
It was easy to see that no link building had actually gone on, what happened was, Just Search bought a huge number of useless spammy links with equally spammy content on them and had them pointed to our client’s site.
After weeding out all the bad links from his profile and submitted a Google Disavow & reconsideration request. He was turned down because according to Google there were more bad links out there for him.
The link profile tab in Webmasters Tools was useless as it didn’t give us the whole profile, just a sample.
After researching trying to find more links we eventually used Ahrefs, linkquidator.com, Alexa and several other online tools to establish a more comprehensive list.
Again we submitted an updated Disavow list and a re-inclusion request and again we were turned down by Google.
Now it becomes interesting.
We discovered that someone is still building links on the domain and we suspect it’s a competitor.
So we wrote to Matt Cutts (Google search spokesman and blog writer for Google), explained it all very carefully with zero emotion as well as voicing our concern, that it seems possible for a competitor to buy bad links, point them at us and successfully get us penalised.
Matt decided to delete the Blog post question from his Blog. (Not Good)
We ask the question again and again he deletes it.
Now it gets serious, my client had a nice mix between PPC and SEO he was spending £6k per month on PPC and a small amount on SEO. His PPC was yielding 10 times his spend in sales.
To top it off within 24hrs of his Organic positions being clattered in Google his Adwords PPC campaign mysteriously fell off the edge of a cliff as well. What I mean here is that his spend remained the same but his PPC sales just dried up completely.
I’ve seen this before for another client but we managed to save them quickly and their PPC account picked up within 24 hrs.
After really working hard for this client I’m afraid it looks like he’s on the brink. Google will lose their revenue, I’ll lose a great client. The client’s customers will lose their place to go. Worst of all my client has a baby on the way and is facing losing his job.
His shop will close and the whole sorry mess will end in tears for many.
What disturbs me the most is that if I’m right? It is possible to get a competitor banned in Google by constantly bad link building for them without them knowing? If that’s right the world of SEO is set to reign terror on hard working successful website owners on a global scale and Google will have to change their apparently sloppy approach to penalisation.
Has anyone seen a correlation between a Manual action in webmasters tools and a drop in performance of a Google Adwords account at the same time? Please comment if you have.
If you feel you may be affected please get in touch as I need as much research as I can get to prove my theory.
You can contact me at email@example.com or call me on 0161 536 0334
This isn’t an advert I don’t sell SEO services.
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