What is negative SEO?
Although you may have heard of negative SEO before, it probably isn’t on your radar. For many new business owners, the topic is confusing and frightening.
However, negative SEO is simple. It is the process of using unethical practices to sabotage another website’s Google rankings. Typically, businesses will try to do their competitors. Sometimes, negative SEO is directly hacking. Other times, it is simply using other tactics to try to lower a site’s rankings.
Google actively tries to prevent people from using negative SEO. In fact, they punish sites that do not follow their webmaster guidelines. Additionally, US and UK lawmakers have failed to truly define (and thus prevent) negative SEO, according to Reboot Online.
Why you should care
Less website traffic means less revenue. There are countless ways to improve your SEO. However, all that hard work can go to waste if you aren’t proactively monitoring your website.
Give me some examples!
- Copying your content. A competitor can duplicate your content across multiple sites. Google ranks original content higher.
- Directing others to your website with spam-like keywords such as online poker.
- Crawling. No, it isn’t cute! Crawling means overloading your site with visitors (often bots), making your site very slow or unresponsive.
- Linking hundreds of spam links to your website.
- Using fake social media profiles to write false reviews online.
How to protect your website
Connect your website to Google Webmaster Tools.
Google can notify you when problems arise. Kissmetrics says that Google can send you alerts when:
- Your website is being attacked by malware.
- Your pages are not indexed.
- You have server connectivity problems.
- You get a manual penalty from Google.
Watch your backlinks!
Monitor Backlinks and other sites will let you know when you website loses important backlinks or gains undesirable ones.
Use an email address with your domain name.
Instead of using your personal email address, create a professional email address that matches your website. For instance, our team uses email addresses that say “@yourimprint.net.”
Although this will help you look more professional, it also tells any webmasters that you are communicating with that you are not a hacker.
Don’t let them copycat.
Head over to Copyscape. There you can make sure nobody is duplicating your content around the web.
Our SEO Services are top notch. We’ll monitor your site, analyze your site, and help you identify the best keywords. Contact us to learn more!