Search Engine Optimization: A Guide To Understanding the Types of Google Penalties

Gone are the easy Internet marketing days when you could just pound your website full of garbage information utilizing key wording in order to meet search engine optimization requirements. Google and other search engines have finally smartened up with regard to these old school practices. They have incorporated rules and will instill penalties if they are not followed.


Photo courtesy Ben Angel on Flickr.

Today, there are specific guidelines that must be met. If they are not met, then your site will suffer penalties, and potentially be taken off Google’s SERP (Search Engine Results Pages). The problem that many website owners and creators have been faced with was what exactly causes the penalties, and furthermore how long do they last are they temporary or permanent? So how can you steer clear of these black marks on your website and your name?

At this time the two basic penalties that Google will flag you for is Algorithmic and Manual penalties. If Google feels that you have violated their terms and conditions such as hosting previously banned websites, cloaking, auto requests, spamming with inappropriate usage of key wording, and link buying. There are a number of others, but these are the main areas that Google will focus on. For the most part these are basic common sense issues. For the Internet marketers that are utilizing their squeeze pages and landing pages to list build etc. They are going to need to ensure they are following the rules. Many are using Word Press to great these handy little money makers. But one has to be wary even if you are an SEO expert, or expert web master. If you can show that the problem was created in error, your penalty will be removed.

In the dreaded math world of algorithms, the algorithmic penalties are sent out immediately and directly. The easy thing with these penalties is that once you correct the problem, or remove the error the algorithm will also note the changes and revoke the penalty and you will be back up and running.

Google has a pretty large anti spam team, if they deem that you website is acting inappropriately or breaking the rules you will suffer their wrath. If you are up to something small time like using hidden texts, your penalty will be short loved and pulled after 30 days typically. If you are involved in cloaking, or other serious behaviors you will be faced with a much longer duration of penalty.

Your webmaster, or SEO professional can likely fix whatever the issues are. Once corrected a letter of intent and proof that corrections have been made can be submitted to Google. They will ensure everything gets taken care of. The best way to not be handed down any penalties is to stick within the rules. Typically those that are lazy or looking for an easy way out, or short cut will break the rules. If you work hard you will get results. And best of all Google will reward you but indexing your site to the top of the page eventually.