This is A Special Case based on a Consultation with one of My Clients.
He is asking for help since he bought a domain wherein for about 2 weeks it is still ranking in Google Search and after that suddenly he received a warning message (the new unnatural inbound link warning message). Seems to just have artificial ranks.
This site has actually a PR of 6 and have a Domain Authority which is 42. And to help him here’s what I have done:
Discover why it lose ranking on SERP and just gain artificial ranks?
Knowing first if it was Truly Penalized:
• Not Ranking Anymore on its Major Keywords
• Doing Google Search using Domain Name of the Website
And since it failed to Rank while searching it in Google, it seems that it has a problem with its backlinks and violated the webmaster guidelines.
Evaluating the Backlinks, What I have discovered…
Downloading the latest links from Google Webmaster tool and identify the quality of its links.
It gains quickly its ranking in Google because of the following:
• Non-English Pligg Sites
• Non-English Blogs
• Links on Blog Networks / Links Wheels with spun content
• Sidebar Links
• Footer Links
• Low PR and DA sites
• Unrelated Sites
• Standalone links
Showing mostly links from spammy websites. It is not only a waste of time but of course a waste in Investment. Buying a domain it truly crucial since a website is the “ace” of your online marketing. You can lose lots of opportunities if a website is penalized in Google since online visibility contributes in gaining traffic for a website.
It gained an artificial rank in SERP because of link manipulation. However, Google was clever enough that even with high PR and DA, it detected unnatural links affiliated with his website. Eventually, an artificial rank will lose its spot in Google.
What you need to do before buying a domain?
• Domain Value. Don’t only consider Page Rank as the basis for the authority of a website you can also use Domain Authority plus you can also check it’s standing through Alexa rank.
• Quality and Number of Backlinks. Do some research or ask the help of a SEO consultant in terms of dealing with the website’s backlinks. Need to check the type of backlinks. If you have identified that it is engaging in link schemes even it has a high PR in the long run it can lead to getting an unnatural link warning message which in turn can lead to drop in rankings just like what happened to the example site.
o Search for Site-Wide links (links in footer, sidebars or blogrolls)
o Search if Links to Irrelevant Sites exist
o Find out if there are low-value sites
o Or seen links that is violating the webmaster guidelines.
• Major keyword rankings. Rankings of its major keywords on search engines especially in Google. This can help you in estimating the opportunities that it can bring to a website.
• Consider the Age of the Domain. The older the website is the more valuable to Google plus the greater chances for ranking.
• Look also for its Graphics or Theme; if it truly looks good or it is well-designed it can truly help in attracting users. It will increase user website experience and website time spent.
• Domain Name. Look for its domain name, it must not be an exact match domain, remember Google has an update about it and it can be a barrier in getting ranks in Google.
• Reasons of Selling the Website. You can also ask the seller if what is the reason behind the sale it somewhat help you in understanding the real purpose of the seller.
• Website Reputation. Take note of its website reputation, you can check it through searching for some reviews or any statement that is pointing to the website. You can also check using its social media networks if what are the responses of the followers, it’s good if the website has wide scope of followers.
• Website Content. Discover if the Website shares relevant information and not just showing little content or crap materials.
•RSS Subscription or E-mail Newsletter list. It can be best also if the Website has a well-managed e-mail list. It is truly helpful in your content updates or e-mail marketing and for that you can ask the seller about it.
• Website Support After Selling the Website. The seller is open for support even after the sale of the website, if he said yes, that means that they are truly willing and dedicated to help you troubleshoot if there are problems which mean that they can be a trusted seller. He is willing to help you in sharing the Google Analytics plus Webmaster Tools wherein you will become the admin of the accounts after the sale plus also in social media accounts and also even on transferring your feed accounts.
•Website Opportunities. The Seller provides an analytical report about your target and the opportunities you can get from that Website, it can be helpful in your decision making process.
There are truly lots of things to consider when buying a website but base on what the client have experience seems that the quality of links or its SEO strategies truly matter, since when you are going to buy a website and you have find out after two weeks or a month that it is penalized that is truly a waste in Investment. If you are the newest owner it is truly frustrating since you will spend more time for removal of links that you haven’t done or you will spend money just to remove those bad links and that is another expense.
With those artificial techniques, although in the shorter period of time you can quickly gain visibility in Google search but in the end it turns out having artificial ranks. It’s not real and tricking Google’s algorithm will just lead to penalty or losing your visibility in Google search.
Insights? Thoughts? The box below is always open for your message.