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Recovering from Google Penalties

A Google penalty is the negative impact any of Google's reviews or change in algorithm has on a website's page rank. Most times it is as a result of black-hat SEO practices. It can cripple a site depending on its severity. These penalties are divided into manual, algorithm and lowlink penalty. Manual penalty is directly handed by Google's team members after manually reviewing your site while algorithm penalty is handled by Googlebot. .

Google penalty fixes involve a retrace and resolution of the problem that resulted in the penalty such as link spam. Once you have done a link detox and disavowed the bad ones, you can make a reconsideration request to the Google team.

What are Google penalties?


A Google penalty is a negative impact Google's search algorithm change or review has on a website's search ranking. The consequence of being penalised by Google can be crippling, as recovery is extremely difficult.

A site can be penalised by Google due to search engine optimisation practices intended for the good of a site. But most of the time, it is as a result of black-hat SEO tactics. When faced with high bounce rates, most webmasters resort to practices that are against Google's guidelines. It is hard to receive penalties for well-intended SEO efforts because Google ensures you receive adequate warnings before taking action.

Some of the crimes that lead to being penalised by Google are divided into on-page and off-page violations. The former include spam problems, incorrect structured data, user-generated spam, unnatural outbound links and hacked content spam while the later, which isn't under the control of the web owner, include unnatural inbound links. These penalties are not without fixes.

Types of Google penalties

Manual penalty:

Googlebot often checks for any practice that is against Google’s guidelines, but in some cases, a member of Google's webspam team can land on your website, review it, find it wanting and hand off a penalty. It may be as a result of your competition alerting Google.

Algorithm link spam penalty

According to Google's Penguin Algorithm, this type of penalty is handed to websites that come off as spammy. It occurs when a site patronises link networks for links or just to buy links. Most penalties that are not manual turn out to be algorithm link spam penalty. The consequence is a drop in traffic or worse, a de-indexation of your site.

Low-quality link penalty

Focusing on building your back links strictly from quality sources is a good way of providing value to your readers (which is one of Google's main goals), but when you are desperate for links and don't care how you get them, you get penalised by Google for it.

Fixes for Google penalties

Step 1: Run a link detox

Running a DTOX report will require you to log on to your LRT and find the recovery button. You will be redirected to the page which will help you execute the report. There are many options to choose from depending on the kind of penalty. A few of them include whether you want to upload your own back link list and if you want to ignore or upload disavowed links. After selecting your option, click on "run link detox" and it will run by itself. The number of links will determine the duration of this exercise.

Step 2: Analyse the results

You may have to wait a long time before this process is completed. Use the smart Detox algorithm to find the bad links without having to check all the links.

Disavow bad links

Once you click on "show me links", the Link Detox will filter out all the links. The ones with the highest (high and above) DTOXRISK will be filtered out first, allowing you to resolve the penalty issues fast.

Facts about Google penalties

Google penalties are often caused by changes in Google algorithms. Webmasters are expected to optimise their copywriting and sites to meet these changes. Every year, Google's search engine algorithms undergo about 600 changes.

Some of these changes are significant like Google Panda and the current Google Penguin. This year's major update called the Medic Core Update which took effect on August 1, 2018. It had the most effect on the health and wellness sector. There was also the Chrome Security Warning and the non-HTTPS sites began to be marked as "not secure" by Google.

Frequently asked questions about Google penalties

My site was just penalised. When do I apply for a reconsideration?

The ideal time to apply for a reconsideration is immediately after fixing the problem that resulted in the penalty. Also provide a documentation of the steps taken to resolve it.

Can I ignore a penalty if the impact is not significant?

It is not advisable to ignore any penalty regardless of how insignificant the impact is. Google regularly revises its penalties so it is possible for the effect of a particular penalty to worsen with time.

Can I go back to a particular practice after the penalty has been fixed?

This is not recommended, as Google can always reapply its penalty. In the event of such, it is unlikely that a reconsideration would be granted again.

My reconsideration request was rejected. What now?

If your reconsideration request was turned down, there are two things you should do. Either you contract an SEO professional or you continue trying. There is no limit to the number of times you can apply for a reconsideration; you can always start the process afresh.

What's the turnaround time for the processing of a reconsideration request?

There is no way to determine the turnaround time for the processing of a request for Google to lift its penalty on your website. This is because Google doesn't have any. You have to wait between a few hours and a couple of months.

What language can I address the Google team in my reconsideration request?

Don't worry about that. The Google reconsideration team can understand many languages.