It is time that you learn about the dark side of link building and SEO.
We’re here to tell you all you need to know regarding Negative SEO, what it can do, and how we, as an experienced SEO team, can help you.
What Is Negative SEO?
It is the 21st century and we have, by now, all heard of negative SEO. Maybe you heard that negative SEO is just a myth and that it cannot be done. Or you may know someone who claims to have experienced negative SEO and seen their website suddenly drop as a result. What’s more, you might even suspect that you are a victim of negative SEO on your website because your backlink profile is full of spammy links and your search traffic trickled to a stop.
Whatever the case, we want to finally explain in detail what negative SEO is and what you should do in case you become a victim of it.
Any ill-natured attempt against your site that aims to harm your rankings is considered negative SEO.
Your competitor who likes to play dirty or someone who personally wants to harm you for any reason can do this in a number of ways: bad links, spammy links, low quality links, negative offpage SEO, penalized blog networks, unnatural linking, duplicated content, fake reviews, and more.
To protect yourself, you should prepare for the risks negative SEO carries, even before launching a website for your business.
Some black hat SEO techniques are fairly obvious, which makes Google penalize them immediately. However, if someone applies these techniques to your website, it’s not them who get penalized, but you.
By pushing you out of the search engine ratings, your competitors could succeed in ranking above you, which will allow their business to grow while yours shrivels away.
When You Do an Internet Search of Your Brand, What Do You Find?
If you found fake or misleading articles about your business or if you noticed that someone else is using your content, using your brand’s name, and ranking better in search engines — you need our help.
If any of these cases sound familiar, you need our services. We can assist you and make those misleading and fake articles and plagiarized websites disappear from Google SERPs.
What Is Happening?
You see, Google says that Negative SEO and backlinks can get a website not only penalized but also removed from search engine result pages.
That’s what Black Hat or Negative SEO utilizes.
So a lot of people who are struggling to compete in today’s market are deciding to use Negative SEO to affect their competitors. By rank dropping your competition, you can start ranking higher in Google’s SERPs.
Basically, Negative SEO is nothing but a way to decrease your competitors ranking in SERPs. Making their rank drop so that yours can rise.
How Does It Work?
For instance, you’re ranking for one specific keyword, but so are your four competitors. Thanks to their SEO efforts, they are ranking on the first four positions in SERPs. You are in 5th place. If you use Negative SEO tactics, you can rank drop your competitors and get to the 1st position in search engine result pages.
Is Negative SEO Actually Real?
We’ll first have to explain some basic things about Google’s search engine and how it ranks web pages if we are to answer this question properly.
You see, before 2012, search engine optimization consisted of focusing on link building and articles. That means that before that moment, the more follow links you had on high ranking websites, the higher your rank position was.
There were even entire businesses that thrived thanks to this. These tools for link building could make any website rank well overnight, but they produced low quality links and sidewide links.
Google’s big algorithm updates and changes have altered everything since those days.
Google launched its Penguin Update in 2012. This update started punishing websites that contained irrelevant, paid backlinks that weren’t organic. It changed Google’s search filter significantly, and as a consequence, thousands of websites plummeted in the search engine result pages. Furthermore, thousands were permanently removed from Google’s index altogether.
How Can You Make an Impact with Negative SEO
We have several different strategies that we use in order to make a website drop in SERPs.
Here are some of the most effective black hat SEO tactics that can ruin a website’s ranking:
Negative SEO links
Ranking high in SERPs has a lot to do with quality, so you will rank higher if you build high-quality backlinks that are relevant to your niche. However, if you’re using spammy, low-quality backlinks that are completely irrelevant to your industry, it will ruin your ranking.
As a result, building these links is among the most successful tactics of Negative SEO. When you need to destroy a website’s ranking, just create multiple low-quality no-follow links from penalized domains. Specialized software can create a bunch of links in a matter of hours, and that will be more than enough to destroy a website’s ranking.
This methodology is rarely used, but it is one of the simplest ways to de-rank a website. Simply buy domains that are already punished for having spam links, host them, and direct them to the website you want to de-rank. All those spam links will count for that website. As a result, that website’s rank will drop.
Once upon a time, before Penguin rolled out, this was used to improve ranking. After it, however, it has become a deadly Negative SEO tactic. On link farms, people exchange links or create a few websites and then link to each other to generate link popularity. Nowadays, this manipulation never goes unpunished because it is seen as unnatural linking.
This is an indirect tactic that takes a lot of time and effort. Basically, the point is that visitors won’t want to come to a website that has poor reviews. Moreover, if you successfully post numerous negative reviews about the website you want to de-rank, you will make them lose many potential clients. Although this may seem like a simple approach, it is not legal because the reviews are not based upon legitimate consumer experiences, therefore we do not provide this service. Furthermore, the IP behind the reviewer’s account is going to be available to the powers that be, and can lead to serious legal consequences.
This is among the most effective and the most expensive Negative SEO strategies. You see, if a website is under a malware attack or is hacked, Google automatically removes its URL from SERPs in order to protect the safety of its users. For this, you will need a professional, as it isn’t recommended that you attempt doing it on your own. Again, we do not provide this service because it is highly illegal in nearly every jurisdiction in the world.
Insert Negative Links
This strategy is effective but complicated to execute. SEO experts need access to the website you want to de-rank in order to put negative links in their footer and header. Here, accessing the website is the most difficult part, and because it is not legal, we do not recommend this approach.
These are some of the most efficient Negative SEO strategies, however, if you want to hire an expert, contact us. We provide both Negative SEO services, and Positive SEO services at an affordable price.
If you’re ready to give your visibility a boost, don’t hesitate, contact us!
How Can You Protect Your Website From Negative SEO?
Without a good position in the SERPs, no online business can become truly successful. And if you’ve spent time, effort, and resources to rank your website well, you don’t want to see all of that go to waste. However, in only a couple of weeks, your competitors can ruin your ranking.
Well, if you are looking to prevent that from happening and to stop Negative SEO attacks that can destroy your ranking, there are several actions you need to take.
Always Check Your Website’s Ranking
This is something that has to be done on a daily basis. If there’s a huge change in a matter of hours, you must locate where it is coming from. There are numerous useful tools online that will enable you to monitor your ranking, such as SERPBook rank checker, and Ahrefs rank tracker.
Keep a Close Eye on Your Backlinks Profile
As we’ve said, someone can set up spam backlinks that will cause a rank drop of your website. So use tools like the Ahrefs to check your profile and do some backlink analysis. In the cases when you notice spam links, disavow them as soon as possible in Search Console with the Google disavow tool.
Pay Attention to Your Business’ Social Profile
Check your social network profiles on a daily basis. Make sure that there are no fake profiles representing you, and that there are no fake negative reviews. You can use Mention.com to keep track of when your website is mentioned and in which context.
Monitor Traffic Sources
Although you might like seeing numerous new visitors on your website out of the blue, this can be a bad sign. If you got redirect traffic from a spam website, this could be a threat to your ranking.
Learn How to Use Disavow Tools
This is the only option you have when you want to recover from negative linking. That’s why it is crucial for you to learn how to use them. We do offer link disavow services on a case-by-case basis.
Protect the Content
You have probably learned by now that content is king. So that’s what you always need to protect. Whenever you publish new content, secure it by immediately submitting it to Google for crawling. That way, Google will be the first to read your new content, and it will index it as your own.
Another thing you should do is check if your content is being copied by anyone. You can check for plagiarism with Copyscape. If you do find that someone has plagiarized your content, submit a Digital Millennium Copyright Act claim to Google, and they will take appropriate action.
Pay Attention to Protection
Protect your website with the best security plugins, so that no one can attack it or hack it.
Try Not to Make Enemies
In business, just as in life, it’s important not to make enemies. So firstly, when you’re planning a Negative SEO attack on your competitors, hide your tracks so that they can’t find you and do the same to your business. And secondly, make sure that you don’t enrage a customer. You never know who’s a Negative SEO expert or a hacker.
If you failed to take these steps and your website is already under a Negative SEO attack, we can help. Contact us today, and our negative SEO service professionals will put a stop to the attack and help your website recover.
Preventing a Negative SEO Attack
Even if you have taken all the necessary steps to protect yourself from a negative SEO attack, sometimes it can appear out of nowhere. Still, being cautious means having fewer chances to be attacked, so you should take all precautions nevertheless.
Here is what you should do:
- Keep up with the latest happenings in the world of online search
The least you can do is learn the basic information about negative SEO attacks and what you should do in such a case. You could read the news online, consult with experts, etc.
- Secure access to your website
You should start with hosting and limit access to your files. Next, we need to secure the admin section of your site with usernames and passwords that are hard to guess. Also, changing your password regularly is essential.
- Check your network security regularly
Failing to regularly update and check all of your computers and/or servers means leaving them vulnerable to attacks. Before you connect them, you should check all the computers that will be a part of your office network for malware. In addition, you should use an encrypted SSL protocol.
- Make sure that your site has been properly indexed
Every now and then, you should take a minute to check your site’s ranking. If it suddenly drops from search engine’ results, you should be worried. If the problem happens every time you check, we have probably been attacked.
If you need help with negative seo services or recovering from a negative seo attack, please contact us now.