The entire SEO industry has changed significantly over past 5 years. As a result many digital marketers changed their strategies. Ranking in Google’s top 10 search results is not as easy as it was 5 years ago. In this article we’ll help you to understand what is negative SEO and how to protect your website from Negative SEO.
What is Negative SEO?
Search Engine Journal defines negative SEO as follows:
“Negative SEO is the practice of implementing black hat SEO techniques on another site. Usually, an SEO attack is unleashed by a disgruntled competitor and his or her minions with the goal of reducing that site’s rankings.”
Negative SEO refers to the practice of using black hat and unethical techniques to sabotage a competitor’s rankings in search engines.
The most common type of negative SEO practice is link-based negative SEO, but there are several other techniques that black hat practitioners can use to reduce your search rankings. Some of these techniques are
- Hacking your website
- Building hundreds of spam links to your website
- Copying your content and share out to all over the internet
- Pointing links to your website using keywords spam keywords
- Creating fake social profiles and ruining your reputation online
- Removing the best backlinks your website has
Set-up Google Webmaster Tools Email Alerts
You can use Google’s own webmaster tools to prevent negative SEO attacks. Google can send you email alerts when:
- Your website is being attacked by malware
- Your pages are not indexed
- You have server connectivity problems
- You get a manual penalty from Google
If you haven’t already, connect your website to Google Webmaster Tools.
Log in to your account and click “Webmaster Tools Preferences.”
Enable email notifications and choose to receive alerts for all types of issues. Click “Save.”
That’s it. You’ll receive email alerts from Google whenever it finds an issue with your website.
Keep Regular Track of Your Backlinks Profile
This is the most common negative SEO practice to prevent spammers from succeeding. Most often, they will perform negative SEO against your website by building low quality links or redirects.
To perform backlink audits, use reliable tools such as Ahrefs or Open Site Explorer.. You can perform backlink audits often to check if someone links to your website.
Protect Your Best Backlinks
Most of the time spammers try to remove your best backlink by contacting the website owner of the link and ask the webmaster to remove your backlink. One way to protect this action, always contact webmasters using your website domain email address instead of using Gmail or Yahoo.
Secure Your Website from Malware and Hackers
Security is extremely important. Because Cyber attacks are on the rise. It’s important to take security of your website seriously and take all measures necessary to prevent spammers and hackers from infiltrating your website.
Here are some of the steps you can follow to upgrade your site’s security:
If you are using WordPress, install the Google Authenticator Plugin and create a 2-step verification password. Each time you log in to your WordPress website, you will be required to add a code generated by Google Authenticator on your smartphone (available on iOS and Android).
- Create a strong password with numbers and special characters.
- Create backups of your files and database on a regular basis.
- If your website lets users upload files, talk to your hosting company and ask them how you can install antivirus to prevent malware.
Check for Duplicate Content
One of the most common negative SEO methods employed by spammers is content duplication. They copy your website content and share it all the places. You will lose your rank, if your content is duplicated.
You can check if your website has duplicate pages on the internet using Copyscape
. Simply add your website or the body of the article you want to verify and it will show you if your content is being published elsewhere on the web, without your permission.
Monitor Your Social Media
Spammers may create fake accounts on social media using your company or website name. Remove all the profile by reporting them as spam
You can find out who is using your brand name, you can use tools like Mention.net.
As soon as someone mentions your name on any social media or website, you will be informed, and you can decide whether you should take action.