SEO Troubleshooting | Algorithmic Penalty Identification
Einstein once said, The formulation of the problem is often more important than the solution and in the case of trying to figure out why your website has lost traffic or ranking, this couldn’t be more true!
The first thing to do in a dicey SEO situation is, Don’t Hit The Panic Button! One of the biggest mistakes people make is they start doing drastic updates to their site or their SEO campaign(s) and this is exactly the wrong thing to do because it could set into action, a chain of events, that can make the recovery process much more difficult. Furthermore, when Google punishes a site for a certain thing like let’s say, Link Scheming and then you all-the-sudden stop building links to your site, it will trigger another algorithm that confirms you were link scheming in the first place. Yes, don’t be surprised that Google with their top Ph.D. analysts and billions of dollars already thought of that.
Really, the best thing to do is absolutely nothing for at least a week, sometimes two, while you have time to fully analyze all the data from every angle and troubleshoot. Sometimes, websites recover on their own while the updates shuffle around.
Picture algorithms being stacked like a Jenga game and when you get smacked down by Google updates like the Panda or the Penguin, the last thing you want to do is make drastic moves that could cause the whole thing to collapse. This is why you MUST carry on as you were and identify the SEO problems before taking action.
Where to Troubleshoot?
Out of my most recent 50 algorithmic penalty analysis that I conducted on websites for the Google Support Forum, I found most penalties were either because the website’s content was in violation or the backlinks profile was unnatural or spammy.
Start by checking the website itself. Look at your content for keyword stuffing, duplicate or scraped content and coding issues.
Check Backlink Profile to make sure it doesn’t contain unnatural linking activity or what Google considers webspam.
These are two very broad places to start looking but if you have specific questions or want me to look at your site, just hit me up in the comments below and hopefully, you read this before making any drastic changes.