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How Do Webspam Factors Affect a Site’s SEO?

Posted by Catherine Hatch on Fri, Sep 14, 2018 @ 10:15 AM

search engine optimizationThere are a number of factors that will affect your website’s page rank on Google. Although Google is not completely transparent with its ranking factors, through research and Google’s guidelines, we can understand many of the factors that help and hurt your website’s rank. It’s no secret that Google doesn’t like websites that seem like spam. We’ve compiled a list of the spam-related features that can sabotage your Google rank. 


Low Quality Content

Google penalizes low quality content with a low rank. If your website contains a content farm, which is a large volume of content created just to satisfy algorithms, you site will suffer a hefty penalty. You should also avoid what Google refers to as “gibberish” content, or content that doesn’t make any sense. In general, anything that’s written for any reason other than to educate and inform visitors will be seen as low quality, which will hurt your site’s ranking.

Over Optimization

Optimizing your page to improve your search results is a good idea. However, when you go crazy with optimization just for the sake of it, Google will notice. Keyword stuffing and header tag stuffing is a red flag for Google that will hurt your ranking, rather than help it. If your optimization efforts sacrifice the quality of your page, you’re going too far. Although optimization can help your page, you should never go overboard and you should avoid sacrificing quality to satisfy algorithms, as these efforts will actually hurt you in the end.

Links to Bad Sites

If your site does not contain anything spam-like but you link to sites that do, your page will suffer. Avoid linking to spam, low quality sites, or sites with factors that Google doesn’t like. If your site features a lot of links, go through them carefully and make sure that the percentage of bad quality sites is low. When you link to bad sites, Google will associate your site with them and assume that your site is a bad one as well, lowering your rank.

Distracting Ads

Many websites feature ads to make money and promote other businesses. There’s nothing wrong with ads, but if you feature them the wrong way, it can come across as spam. Pop up ads, ads above the fold, and overly flashy or distracting ads not only detract from your site’s appearance, but they also make your site look like spam to Google. Interstitial popups on mobile sites, which are ads that appear before the visitor can view the content of the site, can also come across as spam, as they detract from the user experience. There’s nothing wrong with featuring ads on your site, but make sure those ads don’t detract from your site’s appearance or user experience to avoid any penalties from Google.

Affiliate Sites

Affiliate sites are sites that are variations of each other, created just to increase traffic to your sites. Google does not like these sites, as each site does not provide unique value to visitors. Therefore, linking to affiliate sites and creating multiple affiliate sites will not only decrease the rank of the affiliate sites, but the rank of your original site as well.

Autogenerated Content

Computer generated content is not looked upon fondly by Google. Content that is generated this way is not high quality and is therefore not valuable to visitors. If Google can tell you’re using a lot of computer-generated content on your site, not only will your site receive a penalty, but your site could even be de-indexed. To avoid these issues, create all of your own content and make sure it’s high quality.


ImageWorks, LLC | CT Search Engine Optimization

While professional SEO services can offer many opportunities to your business, you should never depend on SEO alone for the growth of your business. The companies that thrive on the online world have a comprehensive approach and utilize both online and offline marketing strategies. SEO can be a big piece; however, it is only one slice of the marketing pie.

By integrating all of today's Web tools such as SEO, social media, pay per click, and blogs, ImageWorks, LLC can turn your site into a lead generation tool.

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Topics: Search Engine Optimization, Google Ranking, Webspam Factors

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