What is Unnatural Link Building Penalty?
According to the Google Quality Guidelines an actual definition of an unnatural link is “creating links that weren’t editorially placed or vouched for by the site’s owner on a page, otherwise known as unnatural links, can be considered a violation of our guidelines.”
What are Paid Links in Google’s point of view?
Paid Links are links which have been put in a blog post or an article, because cash or kind had been exchanged for it, according to Matt Cutts are unethical and liable to Penalty.
What happens if your site gets penalized?
If you do not take necessary steps put up in Google Guidelines, as mentioned by Matt Cutts.
- Page Rank will disappear.
- In a case that we had received, their penalty hadn’t affected Google SERP Ranking. Neither did it put a negative impact on the organic traffic but then, its case specific.
- The website took action immediately. If they would have delayed in responding and taking action, it might have resulted in a great damage to the reputation and rankings of their website. They would penalize the website for 6 months to say the least.
One of our clients received following message on April 3rd 2014
Unnatural outbound links
The fact was that our client hadn’t allowed any advertisements on their blog/site. They used their blog, for online-promotion of third party products. We had found a total of 349 outbound links on their website and blog. On their main website, which had 180 pages were created in a Joomla CMS. We had checked outbound links because we hadn’t found any suitable free tool for external links checker.
In case you have small website. We had tried some tools with some websites, like http://www.wintzell.net/seo-tools/domain-outbound-links-check.php and http://www.linkvendor.com/seo-tools/outbound-links.html, which, if you have a small website, might be useful to you as well:
We had divided the site in small chunks and checked it thoroughly, starting from Menu Bar, we had moved to the body, widgets and finally to the site wide footer.
The site owner had the blog created on WordPress. Thanks to the creators of WordPress plug-ins, we didn’t find any problem working in the WordPress blog and in no time with help of the WordPress Plug-in Outbound Link Manager; we had the entire list of outbound links mapped in our admin panel.
[Example only – we have found numerous links here]
Below the example of Excel sheet that we had created-
We had prepared an excel sheet with the “do follow” links that we had changed to “no follow” and the “do follow” links which we had kept intact.
On April 4th 2014, we had sent a request to Google, on our clients’ behalf, with following message:
I had received an email from you on April 03 2014 about a penalty for unnatural outbound links. We have reviewed the website and found a total of  outbound links. Of these only  were do-follow links. We have applied no-follow tag on most of these except outbound links to our social media profiles on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and G+.
Please review the list of all outbound links and the corrective action we have taken by clicking here. [a link to the file on Google Doc. was put]
We believe we are now strictly following the prescribed guidelines for outbound links. We request you to remove the penalty.
It there’s something we still need to fix, please do let us know.
Thanks and regards,
On April 10th 2014, we received following message -
Reconsideration request for http://www.XXXXXXX.com/XXXXX: Manual spam action revoked -
In the next 2 or 3 days our Page Rank was reinstated. Hence, taking the right steps on time helped us save our client.
Hope this article was helpful.