A Sneak Peek into the Important Google Spam Updates

By  //  November 26, 2021

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Google rolled out November spam update over eight days. Although it is too early to predict its implications, you would have felt its repercussions if you were involved in any form of spam effort targeted by this algorithmic change. The recent spam update has to do with content and not so much with links.

The link spam update happened around July 2021. Other updates also took place this year. Still, let’s focus on the spam updates for better understanding to avoid any unwanted hassle. So, what is spam as per Google?

November spam update: Google’s definition of spam 

The search engine mogul has always been strict about the quality, and its recent algorithmic changes reflect nothing but this. According to Google, any poor-quality website asking for personal user details or encouraging them to install malware is spam. A site pretending to be some other credible site or a phishing scam can also be an example.

Now, why do you need to care about it? Any significant change in organic ranking or traffic from Google search results indicates the effect of spam updates. Your website can face a backlash for violating specific spam update guidelines. If you wish to know the status, you can examine your traffic and ranking of the last week.

Generally, any site with malicious intent falls into the category of spam as per the guidelines. However, some sites sticking to guidelines can also be spammy even without realizing it. You can think of an unsecured site vulnerable to hacking and malware attacks.

Google doesn’t bother whether you indulged in intentional spam or are a victim of hacking spam. You cannot expect any different treatment from the spam updates rolled out by the company in November. The site owner remains responsible for this. If you compare annual spam-fighting reports by Google, you will know the rate at which the cases of hacked spam are increasing.

As hinted, it is too early to provide concrete insights into the effects of content spam updates. That’s why it is critical to examine the status of your website after the recent spam update. A drop in rankings can signal you seriously need to take care of your site’s security and the possibility of attacks. But you don’t have to worry if you adhere to safe search engine practices.

If you cannot handle everything, you can enter a partnership with a recognized digital marketing services provider for assistance. Their domain expertise and knowledge can prove helpful for your business.

July link spam update: Focus on the backlink profile

When talking about spam updates, you cannot leave out July 2021’s algorithmic link spam update. It took two weeks to roll out this update that aimed at detecting and removing link spam regardless of the language. Hence, many links faced wrath.

However, those who followed white hat practices and avoided any guideline violation for links were safe and can continue to be so. In this, appropriate tagging of the links is also critical. If you don’t want to suffer any penalty in the future also, you must stick to tagging conventions as required. You can keep these in mind, for example, “rel=sponsored” for affiliate links, “rel=sponsored” for sponsored links, and “rel=nofollow” for guest posting. 

To avoid the impact of the link spam updates, you may want to do some more things. You can pick external linking in this context. If you follow the best practices in this area, you will not buy links not relevant to your page.  Link exchange is also not good.

Generally, people engage in activities whereby both parties agree to add their links on each others’ platforms. While relevant links are not harmful, you cannot fully trust this link-building effort. Links obtained based on any contractual obligations may not be helpful. Also, staying away from link generating or content spinning tools is better.

It merits attention that any authoritative link-building initiative relevant to your content, product, or service will not hurt. Since it is an integral part of SEO, your focus on backlink profile is essential. It can reward your site with ranking. However, if you want to clean the mess, you can do that also to save yourself. 

Cleaning and building backlink profile

It can consist of three stages – technical SEO, on-page SEO, and off-page SEO. Technical SEO involves site auditing to ensure the integrity of the structure and safety against any issue. A safe site will not face any challenges with crawling and indexing. However, it doesn’t only depend on content quality. Site architecture, speed, and user experience also play a critical role in ranking. 

On-page SEO looks into content optimization for link building. When auditing content, the focus remains on its relevancy, which depends on its resonance with the target audience, applicability for weeks, months, and years, and ability to include recent updates.

Any content pieces with too many keywords, hyperlinks, and fillers can be low quality. Also, you wouldn’t want thin content on the site. Google gives importance to users. If you keep them happy, the search engine will naturally be supportive. 

After this, you have to consider off-page SEO, which covers PR, branding, equity, and link building. Going into this domain without fixing technical and on-page issues can prove costly. Hence, the best thing can be to take a content-centered approach for link building.

Review all the assets on your site, such as “About Us” pages, career pages, service locations, infographics, blogs, etc. Once reviewed, you can start investigating competitor backlinks and metrics and linking opportunities while eliminating unsavory brand mentions and fixing broken links.

The purpose of the information on Google spam updates is to make you aware of the significance of holistic SEO efforts. Whether you examine November’s content spam update or July’s link spam update, you cannot deny that both these components form an integral part of your site’s ranking, credibility, and success.

Hence, it makes sense to follow the best practices in every sphere, including content, link building, and others, to secure better rankings and visibility.