In the world of search engine optimization, there are so many things that you have to take into consideration if you want to be successful. While there are plenty of things to take up your time with regular search engine optimization, you also have to be aware of the impact of negative SEO. What exactly is negative SEO and how can you combat it?
Negative SEO is a strategy in which a competitor tries to negatively affect your search engine rankings by taking certain actions. In the past, poor links didn’t really hurt your site’s rankings, they just didn’t help. With changes to Google’s algorithm, they can now hurt your rankings. Because of this, some unscrupulous competitors may go out and buy 10,000 terrible links pointing to your site, in an effort to hurt your rankings. How can you stand up against this kind of attack? Here are a few things to try.
Set Up Email Notifications
One way that you can be alerted immediately when anything happens to your site is to set up email notifications. It is important to have a Google Webmaster Tools account, as well as a Bing Webmaster Tools account. You can set up email notifications in your account anytime something happens that is hurting your site.
Regularly Check Your Site
It is generally a good idea to regularly check your website manually. Make sure that your page’s rankings are still doing well in the search engines. If you notice that your ranking for a page has gone from the a first page to 10 pages back in Google results, then you have a good idea that something has changed.
Track Your Links
One of the most common ways to hurt someone with negative SEO is by messing with their links. It is a good idea on your part to regularly track your links. You can use tools like OpenSiteExplorer or Majestic SEO, as well as Google Webmaster Tools to see where your links are coming from. If you notice a large spike of incoming links, this is possibly negative SEO taking place.
Set Up Alerts
There are also ways to set up alerts for things pertaining to your site. For example, if you have a Google Analytics account, you can set up alerts for things like sudden drops in traffic, an increase in bounce rate, or a decrease in conversions. This way, you can find out immediately after something changes, so that you do not wait around and allow it to happen for very long.
There are many different ways that you can see who is referring your site traffic. If you get a feel for which sites send you traffic, you should be able to tell when unexpected sites pop up. If the site is a spam site or it looks like it is not reputable in any way, you should work on getting the links removed.
Regardless of what strategy do you use to combat negative SEO, it is important that you remain vigilant. You have to continually stay up to date with what is going on with your site at any given time. Otherwise, you might be caught off-guard when your conversions or your income decrease rapidly without warning. It is a never ending battle, but it’s one worth fighting.