I know that some marketing managers believe that being removed from the Google results is something which happens only to websites engaged in dodgy dealings. It’s not something which need concern proper businesses, right? Er …wrong. In fact, ever since BMW tripped the Google switch back in 2006, businesses of perfectly good standing have been unceremoniously dumped from the Google results without warning.
A new example appeared on the David Naylor blog last week, this time a major firm of solicitors. According to the author, Irwin Mitchell’s external link profile (which is almost certainly the cause of the ban) includes articles which look like they’ve been paid for, “guest posts” on blogs which look like they’ve been placed just for the links in the text, and what appears to be “comment spam”. All or any of these could be the cause of the Google ban, almost certainly in conjunction of an unnatural volume of instances of each.
What’s worrying is that these practices may have been recommended as a matter of course by all but the most puritanical “SEO consultants” in the past. I’ve noticed recently a number of search results pages for generic product types where a company which has held the top spot for years has just disappeared. I don’t have the time to investigate whether they’ve just fallen away a bit or have been thrown out of the results completely, but it could well be the latter. I hope none of you are in similar danger.
Read the latest story in Irwin Mitchell Suffer Google Whiplash As Google Penalty Knocks Them Out of Index.