Getting quality back links to your site is a well known tactic to improve search engine positioning. However if the back links are created too quickly you can get penalised for over optimising the keywords in your back link campaign. Google has an over optimisation penalty which seems have been intensified in the latest Panda Update. If you have seen pages disappear with this update them this is one of the areas you should be looking into. Click here for more information about better ranking after the Google Panda update.
Getting Links from other sites, blogs and directories
Sites should obtain back-links slowly so that they appear natural to Google. Obtaining too many back links over a short period of time can be seen by Google as a link spike.
To avoid penalties for over optimisation, links should be added naturally over the year. The analysis of the number of links gained over time is called link velocity, what you are aiming for is a steady increase in backlinks with no obvious peaks
Anchor Text and Keywords
Another way you can fall into the over optimisation penalty trap is building too many backlinks with the same anchor text. Make sure you use varied anchor text, a link campaign which just contains the same keyword backlinks could appear to Google as an unnatural link buying campaign which can result in a penalty.
This can also apply to internal links on your site, if you think you have been penalised then take a look at your internal linking system. Have you bombarded your site with the same anchor text leading to the same page? If so go thorough your site and remove the links and replace them with links to other products or services. Don’t forget to vary your anchor text keywords.
Checking your back links
There are many different tools for checking your back links. Backlinkwatch is free but there are some great paid for services that are worth checking out too. SEOMOZ provide a great tool – go to backlinks analysis and enter your URL to find the anchor text links indexed by SEOMOZ. To use this tool to it’s best advantage you need to pay a subscription, if you are serious about search engine optimization though the set of SEOMOZ tools available are a good investment. You should also check out MajesticSEO – a brilliant set of tools for anyone serious about SEO and linkbuilding.
If your ranking has slipped and you think your back links are over optimised with the same anchor text, you should concentrate on building links to other services. You can do this by publishing articles on well ranked external blogs, or participating in a social media. Note that the value of many popular article submission sites have been devalued with the Google Panda update. Try to find places on the web, relative to your product or niche where you can contribute.
Over optimisation penalties can take up to 2-3 months to remove, however if you concentrate on building some strong natural links the penalty should be removed. Google states that they will re-include an over optimised when the problems have been resolved.
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