If you are working in SEO services, dealing with rankings dropped might be your main job. Therefore, you should know why your ranks can drop and how to prevent and manage it. In the information below, we will tell you some information on how to cope with it. Check this out!
- Manual Search Engine Penalty
Your visitor or human reviewers are the one who will determine whether pages on your site are not compliant with Google’s webmaster quality guidelines. There are many reasons for manual actions, such as hacked site, user-generated spam, unnatural backlinks, thin content and cloaking.
In fact, manual penalties can cause your site rankings experience a big drop overnight. If you are not sure whether it is because of manual actions or not, you can log in to your Google Search Console account and go to the Search Traffic>Manual Actions section. A notice will be shown when your site gets manual penalty. It will also inform you whether the whole site has been affected or not.
Solution: There are two solutions for the most common violations and tips for each; this is what you can do when you have no idea where the penalty is coming from.
On –Page Violations/ Hacked site
- You’ll need to go through the pages on your site that allow user-generated content and identify and correct the violations, if you got penalized for user-generated spam. Above all, it’s a good idea to implement measures to prevent user-generated spam in the future.
- If the cause of your problem is thin content, you’ll need to figure out which sites that duplicate content on other sites, pages with little content and affiliate links or auto-generated content. You’ll need to take all thin and duplicate content down, and discover how to make more uniqe content that offer more value.
- You can use the Fetch as Google tool in Google Search Console if the notice is for cloaking or sneaky redirects. Then, compare the content fetched by Google to the content seen by a human in a browser. Hence, fix anything that differs and ensure Google sees you have the same content to both search engine both and users. To look for any sneaky redirects, you can look for any irrelevant redirects by using WebSite Auditor. Typing your website’s URL to create a project, and when the crawl is complete, switch to Pages with 302 redirect, Pages with 301 redirect, and Pages with meta refresh in you site audit. Then, you will get a full list of redirected pages along with the URLs they redirect to.
It is important to remove all unnecessary redirects. In general, you better use only 301s and only in cases when the redirect makes sense for the users.
- You’ll probably know which links need to be taken down or unfollow, if you got penalized for unnatural links from your site. Generally, these are paid links or links that are part of link exchanges. You need to be tricky to find all of big sites that have been around for a while. In this case, you should visit WebSite Auditor, switch to the All Resources dashboard, and click on HTML (under External resources). It displays all outgoing external links to HTML pages from your site. Analyze and select the list and identify the links that are spammy and the ones that have been bought or acquired through link exchange.
If there are unnatural links to your site, your backlink profile can be the caused for your penalty. I recommend using SEO SpyGlass and its integration with Google Search Console to do it. At step two, you can import the links by selecting both SEO PowerSuite Link Explorer and Google Search Console.
Next, switch to the Linking Domains module, go to the Link penalty risk tab, select all the domains, and hit Update Penalty Risk. You can get detail analysis of all your linking domains and give you an estimation of how toxic links from each of these domains. You can sort your linking domains by their riskiness by clicking on the header of the Penalty Risk column, when this check is complete. In fact, link is considered as worth to be looking for when it has a penalty risk of over 50%.
Bear in mind that any risky links should be well examined before you disavow them.
- Algorithm Update
Among so many updates, there are two updates that can be the major updates to look up for, whatever your niche or business type is. They are Penguin and Panda update. Therefore, to prevent any bad effect from the update, you should watch the changes in the SERP for your niche keywords. To start monitoring SERP fluctuations, go to SERP Analysis in the bottom part of your screen and click record SERP data. Through this your Rank Tracker will record the top 30 search results in the SERP History table. In the end, there’s no sure-fire way to avoid your web from Google updates. But to minimalize the impact, you can stay away from any grey-hat SEO practice. Above all, remember to create valuable and more user engagement content on your pages.
In SEO, your rankings will never stay in the same place with a long time as if a certain page’s ranking increases, the other must go down in the SERP. This is why SEO is a never ending-process. So, how can we deal with this situation?
The answer is not only tracking your own site but also tracking your main competitors. Moreover, you can also audit your competitor site to track rankings and run both on-page and off-page audits.
- Lost Links
If you happen to reclaim the links you lost, the logical thing to do is get in touch with the webmaster. How you do this depends on the nature of the backlink. You can give a quick call to site owner or you can email, Twitter, or Lindkedln to get the link back. To prevent any lost links, you should monitor your link profile regularly.
- Site Redesign, Migration, or Other Changes
The first thing to check after having any redesign site or migration is to check whether there are any crawl problems. You can go to Google Search Console and jump to Crawl>Crawl Errors. Switch between the tabs and look at the graphs to see any issues that occurred since you implemented the changes on your site.
To prevent any crawl problems, you need to track your site in Google Search Console constantly. Then, check on your crawl stats regularly. Do site audits by paying particular attention to things like HTTPS issues, 4xx pages, and redirect chains.
- Negative SEO
Negative SEO is usually aimed at decreasing a competitor’s site rankings in search engines’ results. Negative SEO is usually about building spammy, unnatural links to the site, content scraping, and even hacking the site. To prevent the negative SEO, one can do regular backlink audits to stay safe from a ranking drop.
- User Behavior Changes
User behavior is one of the most controversial topics as they can change in a sudden. If you notice a slight ranking drop across any number of keywords, and you are positive it’s not caused by any of the six reasons outlined above, your website’s engagement metrics are the place to look. To avoid this thing happens, you can check on the CTR of your highest ranking terms regularly in Google Search Console so you can spot any drops early, and go through the tips above if you do notice any declines.