Perhaps you purchased a backlink in the past and want to clean up your backlink profile or someone posted a link on a “spammy” looking site.
Perhaps you received notification through search engine console that you now have a manual penalty. It can be a scary time, especially when your traffic and revenue is dropping.
How do you compel a site owner or webmaster to remove a backlink from their site?
I had this experience in 2017 when Google put a manual penalty on a site I had been working on for 2 years.
No, it was not because of me, silly!
Google went back 10 years and found links posted in 2007 in order to punish a site they did not like (they sold outdoor gear). My job was to get rid of the penalty.
Here is what we did:
Find the site owner or person accountable for the offending site This is not always easy. Sometimes we searched on LinkedIn, WHOIS Database, Intricate Google searches, The WayBackMachine and other places. You must find the owner or active webmaster. Old sites may not be maintained, especially sites or pages on free blog tools. Do your best.
Once you find the person, find their email address If you find the person on Linkedin, you can message that person directly or look for their contact information on the profile page. Other options include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ (when it existed), and other social media sites. You can always try using “info@” or “webmaster@” or “email@example.com” and other methods. Nowadays, it isn’t too terribly difficult, but it does sometimes take an hour or two to find an email address.If you can’t find an email address, find a phone number. If they are local, visit their business personally. Nothing beats a face-to-face.
Write an email that would make your attorney proud Do not misrepresent yourself as an attorney, but writing like an attorney will help speed things along. State the facts and consequences. List where the link is located on their site (the exact URL) and the page it is linked to on your site. State that Google views their site as spam and has already punished your site and will likely punish THEIR site if the links are not removed (which is true). Be polite, but make a compelling argument to call or email you “NOW!”
Include ALL your contact information Include proof that you are a real person including Linkedin profiles, telephone number, address, corporate information and more.
Give them a short deadline to contact you (48 hours or by End of Day Tomorrow) Along with a deadline, the consequences. Again, be nice and professional. But a deadline is crucial. The consequences will always be that your attorney, listed below, will contact them with a “cease and desist” order from the [your county] courthouse and will be sent via certified mail.
Include your attorney’s contact information Be nice, but in your email, you should encourage them to contact your attorney directly. They won’t, but they will call or email you immediately.
When they call, have a smile on your face and work together to solve the issue They will be amenable to fix any issue, I know this from experience. Work as a team. Help them find the links on their site and confirm they are gone once they finish their work. Thank them! They likely helped you save the site.
I implemented this strategy exactly as described above and those website owners contacted me within 24 hours. Their action was swift. They deleted all links that led to our site property within 4 days (at most) and were very helpful and polite during the process. We were both polite. It’s business – not personal.
This strategy helped eliminate the manual penalty within 2 months (other issues were involved as well) – just in time for the holiday season. The penalty would have cost the company more than $2 million dollars over the holiday season, but the crisis was averted.
Here are the basics of the video written out with most of the slides.
This lesson is called Captions. Captions are a short description at the top of a page that describes the service or product. This is a short description that really is an introduction to what the page is about. This section should also contain internal linking and text-decoration to help a person decide that THIS is the correct page that will give me all the information that I want and need.
The content in the caption will ALWAYS be “above the fold” that is, viewable without having to scroll down the page. Often, Google looks at the content above the fold first and makes determinations as to the subject matter.
Never make a visitor take action to ensure they have arrived on the correct page. Without scrolling or clicking, they should be able to scan the content quickly to determine that THIS is the best, most congruent page available.
A solid foundation of structural SEO begins with a few basics:
- Title Tags – invisible when you look at a page, but it is embedded in the code of a page - Meta Descriptions (Meta means information or information about something) Title and Meta Descriptions are both Meta Tags – it tells Google and other search engines and directories what the page is about
- H1 Tags – an HTML element that acts like the Title of the page – it is viewable to the page viewer - Captions – This is an OP term that basically means it is a description of the page content usually 150-500 words. Located at the top of a page
What Are Captions? Think of Captions as an on-page glorified Meta Description. They are used for people and search engines alike.
Captions provide all the useful information a person and any search engine needs to ensure this content is useful + adding internal linking and text-decoration also helps.
Captions should be placed at the top of a page, above the fold.
In this template, you have a minimum of 6 sentences.
Let’s break it down into 6 separate sections and then put it together at the end.
- 1 Creative Introductory Sentence - 1 Sentence Summarizing the Service - 1 Umbrella Sentence About the Company or Owner - 2 Detailed Sentences about the industry and specific information to that service including incentives, benefits, personas, geolocation, and more - 1 Conclusion Sentence that reinforces this is what the visitor wants and maybe a call to action
Write a creative introductory sentence to ensure a human being and a bot can tell that this page content is not created by a machine and is not generic in nature. It can be any type of creative sentence that discusses the service or product.
"A professional teeth cleaning, besides daily brushing and flossing, is one of the best things a person can do to keep healthy teeth for a lifetime.
Dr. Acula likes to see his patients twice per year to ensure there are no early signs of gum disease, foreign objects stuck in the crevices and to apply a protective coating of fluoride, which reduces cavities by 18% (1). "
The second sentence summarizes the service.
Repeat the service name and boldface it.
The link will lead to a page that discusses plaque and the best ways to combat it.
This section should be easy, it is a sentence about the business or the business owner. You can include "save the cat" type information, list awards the person has won, sponsorships for local kids teams, philanthropy work and include social proof information.
Dr. Acula was the first Dentist in St. John to accept all forms of insurance and offer a discount on services when clients paid cash. Today, we have served over 8,500 customers including 2,300 families since 1984. <-- that's great social proof, credibility and a bit "save the cat."
This is an opportunity to write about the industry and to include incentives, benefits and the like.
"If you schedule recurring teeth cleanings there is always a 15% discount plus a FREE GIFT of a toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss to ensure you are ready and motivated to maintain your teeth and gums. "
The final section and a call to action. Link the telephone number no matter what page it is and always provide the visitor with some idea of when they can make an appointment. Give convenience information.
This slide represents all the information together. This entire section took only 10-12 minutes to write because of the template.
There is nothing worse than a blank sheet of paper or an empty screen. Use the template to help begin the process of creating great content.
A professional teeth cleaning, besides daily brushing and flossing, is one of the best things a person can do to keep healthy teeth for a lifetime. Dr. Acula likes to see his patients twice per year to ensure there are no early signs of gum disease, foreign objects stuck in the crevices and to apply a protective coating of fluoride, which reduces cavities by 18% (1).
A professional teeth cleaning usually includes an initial set of x-rays to ensure there are no cavities. This is assessed by the dentist and is with modern technology, only takes 5 minutes. Next is an examination of the teeth and gums followed by very light cleaning and flushing of plaque between the tooth and gums. We finish up with flossing, rinsing and fluoride treatment.
Dr. Acula was the first Dentist in St. John (get directions here) to accept all forms of insurance and offer a discount on services when clients paid cash. Today, we have served over 8,500 customers including 2,300 families since 1984.
If you schedule recurring teeth cleanings there is always a 15% discount plus a FREE GIFT of a toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss to ensure you are ready and motivated to maintain your teeth and gums. A beautiful smile is always free.
Call Today to schedule your appointment for a teeth cleaning at (312) 555-1212 or via our online schedule. We are open from 10am until 6pm Monday – Thursday.
This is directly from Google about having little or no original content. This template can help you create original content.
Take note when creating content. Make your content as unique as possible. Even when using a template, unique pages could seem too similar, so review your content every 5-7 pages to ensure your content is always unique.
1 Creative Introductory Sentence 1 Sentence Summarizing the Service 1 Umbrella Sentence About the Company or Owner
2 Detailed Sentences about the industry and specific information to that service including incentives, benefits, personas, geolocation, and more 1 Conclusion Sentence that reinforces this is what the visitor wants and maybe a call to action
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