I wanted to write specifically about an issue that really annoys me and I am very sure annoys you too. I am talking about SEO spam emails from SEO companies usually based in India but there are some popping up elsewhere. They target all of us.. even those people who have internet marketing companies.
I think within our own companies we get around 100 emails a DAY from companies trying to sell us SEO services, coupled with web development. The emails are usually poorly written and are a cut and paste job from a templated email which perhaps others have had success from.
I bet most of you have had emails like this (literally just a cut and paste.. spelling mistakes are part of the original email):
We are a fast growing company based in India with primary focus on Search Engine Optimzation (SEO), Link building Services.
We have a dedicated team of 130 professionals to serve you in building appropriate links and developing SEO.
We are working as an outsourced vendor for many reputed SEO agency based in USA, UK, Canada and Australia.
Other Affordable Search Engine Optomization Services Provided By Us:
Please let me know if you are interested in our services.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Press Release
- Article Submission/Article Writing
- Blog Submissions/Writing
- Directory Submission
- Social Media Optimization.
Firstly, this is most likely a kid emailing from his bedroom, he claims 130 employees which I very much doubt. My guess is that he has been told how easy it is to get business from the "west" and that a simple email will have the money flowing in.
Secondly he emails from a GMAIL account... this is clearly worrying. What do you have to hide? If you have 130 employees surely you can afford a website and a proper URL in your email address. The main reason they use GMAIL is to get past email blacklisting. As soon as this address is blacklisted, they start another one. I have heard the excuse about internet connections.. but this is simply not true. If you are a genuine company then you will have a good internet connection.
Thirdly, I have heard many stories from clients and friends who have used these companies due to the low costs offered. Most regret it in the end. Spoiler alert: 75% of our clients come from these other SEO's who have RUINED their SEO with unnatural links and spam.
I understand that in this day and age winning business is not easy. But surely we are past just copying and pasting emails and then spamming all and sundry? There are many effective ways to get to people.
It's worth putting in the effort, researching the company that you are looking to target and offering something of substance within the email:
Suggest keywords that will work for their business
Conduct analysis on their current on page position
Suggest some changes they could make to improve their current position
Comment on their social media strategy with clear and positive suggestions
Offer a risk / reward scenario so that they are comfortable with doing business with you
My general advice on this is simple... STAY WELL CLEAR of any of these so called "SEO companies" just delete the emails instead. They mostly conduct poor, black hat SEO and no doubt will leave you in a worse position than before. We have 14 active clients with UNNATURAL link penalties from oversea's SEO's that we are currently fixing. Costing 10X what they spend with an oversea's spammer SEO.
There are some exceptions.. but those exceptions will most likely put the effort in as previously described.
I am really interested to hear from any of you who have been caught by these types of companies. What experiences did you have, good or bad?
Webmasters need to take action to resolve any of the manual action notification messages listed below if they appear in Google Webmaster Tools under Search Traffic > Manual Actions.
Cloaking and/or sneaky redirects
Some pages on this site appear to be cloaking (displaying different content to human users than are shown to search engines) or redirecting users to a different page than Google saw. Learn more. Learn more.
Some pages on this site may have been hacked by a third party to display spammy content or links. You should take immediate action to clean your site and fix any security vulnerabilities. Learn more.
Pages on this site appear to use aggressive spam techniques such as automatically generated gibberish, cloaking, scraping content from other websites, and/or repeated or egregious violations of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Learn more.
Thin content with little or no added value
This site appears to contain a significant percentage of low-quality or shallow pages which do not provide users with much added value (such as thin affiliate pages, cookie-cutter sites, doorway pages, automatically generated content, or copied content). Learn more.
Unnatural links from your site
Google detected a pattern of unnatural, artificial, deceptive, or manipulative outbound links on pages on this site. This may be the result of selling links that pass PageRank or participating in link schemes. Learn more.
Unnatural links to your site
Google has detected a pattern of unnatural artificial, deceptive, or manipulative links pointing to pages on this site. These may be the result of buying links that pass PageRank or participating in link schemes. Learn more.
Unnatural links to your site—impacts links
Google has detected a pattern of unnatural artificial, deceptive, or manipulative links pointing to pages on this site. Some links may be outside of the webmaster’s control, so for this incident we are taking targeted action on the unnatural links instead of on the site’s ranking as a whole. Learn more.
Pages from this site appear to contain spammy user-generated content. The problematic content may appear on forum pages, guestbook pages, or user profiles. Learn more.
If you have the Spammy freehosts message, Hidden text and/or keyword stuffing message, additional messages or other messages from the Google Webmaster Tools Manual Action Viewer since August 8, 2013 please forward, send screen shots and/or submit in comments below.
Google Panda Update: Started from Feb 2011 to Jul 2012 (roughly over 15 updates), the Panda update acts more like a filter. It does not run live, but calibrates the indexed websites in batch processing and the result is then relayed and synchronized with various Google Data Centers. Any corrective changes made to your website reflect in ranking only after your site is re-indexed by Google and after they re-run their next calibration computing. As such, the impact on ranking may take from 1 to 3 months. It may be wise to be patient in expecting rankings change in case you plan to update your website based on post-Panda advisories.
Google Panda update was focused on "content" of the website. It was NOT about checking the quality of the back-links. Google's effort was to filter out low quality content, poor user experience (noted user signals like high bounce rates), content over optimization, thin content (especially above fold), copied / duplicate content, excessive Ads above the fold, content farms, scraped and spun content, poor usability. Parked domains were devalued, PageRank importance was downgraded. The Panda update affects the entire (or section of the site) rather than individual pages.
Google Penguin Update: Implemented between Apr 2012 and Jun 2012 (over a few versions), the Penguin update was focused on checking impact of low quality back-links, participating in link schemes, creating paid links, aggressive link exchanges, creating irrelevant outgoing or incoming links, webspam & blogspam back-links (from irrelevant, blog networks or bad sites), over-optimized exact match / keyword-rich / unnatural anchor text in incoming links, low quality article marketing (with embedded back-links), keyword stuffing in content, cloaking, sneaky redirects, doorway pages, creating doorway domains, keyword-rich internal navigation footer links across the site, creating purposeful duplicate content. Google is in the process of diluting or discounting the value of bad links. Google may not necessarily penalize your site unless you have excessive bad links or you continue to create them. In the same update, Google is rewarding the value of good incoming natural and a good ratio of brand links.
Google has always taken signals of incoming links seriously. However, over a period of time, creation of excessive unnatural links has devalued its algorithm and the quality of its results.
Post the Penguin update, you need to be careful while creating back-links to your website so that you do not trigger the filter items of the Penguin updates. You need to immediately stop all kinds of links spam techniques you may have been using, particularly the ones listed above. The links you create should appear as natural as possible, as if the linking website has ignored the existence of search engines or has attempted to rank your site higher for any keywords. In essence, if search engines did not exist, you would expect the links to be in the following (read 'healthy') format.
Penguin and Panda Recovery SEO Recovery - Fix Your Spammy Link Profile Today!
Have you been receiving notifications from Google about the use of unnatural links and other issues on your site? Our Penguin and Panda SEO Recovery service is a real solution for those situations. By offering our removal and correction services, you will get the best resolution to an ever too common problem plaguing websites.
So what drives these warnings by Google you wonder? Google designed a very high tech way to seek and destroy internet spam and bad website practices, and then penalize website owners. Penguin is a search engine algorithm update aimed at lowering search engine rankings of sites found to be violating the webmaster guidelines enforced by Google. Panda is also an update to Google's search engine ranking algorithm made to lower the ranking of low quality sites and raise the ranking of those which meet the guidelines.
Google Penguin and Panda are looking for specific things – duplicate content, thin or bad content, keyword stuffing, cloaking, link schemes, and other things deemed as "black hat" SEO techniques. Unfortunately, many inexperienced people try these techniques because they are easily learned – they then have the power to ruin a website with just a couple of key strokes. In a matter of a few bad techniques, your web page ranking can tank and internet users will never be able to find your site – regardless of how high ranking it was before.
What I do as professional expert in this area is a type of damage control. Not only will I fix your penalties, spam and site errors, but I will also educate you on how to prevent this in the future and educate on the best form of natural SEO within Google's guidelines.
What's the message from Google if you're hit with a Penalty?
Here's some insight into our process:
- We evaluate bad links which are unnaturally posted online
- Then, we run a link analysis using Google's own link reporting tool
- An external link analysis is also conducted to evaluate anchor texts
- Unnatural links are then removed or edited to fit within the guidelines set forth by Google
- Additionally, we do a spam audit to evaluate and correct hidden links and text
- ...and then rectify over optimization from prior users
Basically, I apply my knowledge and experience of healthy SEO practices and what is and isn't accepted by Google to fix damage done by misguided techniques or glitches in programming. We analyze the situation with our high tech tools and knowledge of the internet, determine what exactly the problem is, and eliminate it or bring it up to Google code.
Does your Google Analytics data have dramatic drops without reason?
Once we have removed the problems causing Google Penguin and Panda issues, we can move forward with improving search engine ranking and internet traffic through quality practices.
Josh Zehtabchi Specializes In:
- High quality back linking that improves ranking and meets Google rules
- Page optimizations that will make your site meet quality guidelines
- Weekly monitoring of sites and analyzing through reports and tools to identify and eliminate issues BEFORE they alert search engine ranking algorithms