Bad Website SEO Optimization methods
So, you say you just have WAY too many visitors – crushing your webserver and using up all your bandwidth? Put a few of these really UNHELPFUL tips into play and just watch your rankings tank. Might not happen immediately, but it will eventually. Just watch your site bomb right OFF the SERPs! And it will take forever to get that rank back! Good stuff.
Script Cheats/Cloaking – also referred to as “Stealth” or “cloaking” – This technique looks at the incoming User Agent most of the time and prepares specifically created text for that search engine spider. Legitimate script techniques were heavily used when browsers were not supporting much in the way of standards several years ago. They are still used to maintain backwards compliance and to provide workarounds on certain browsers in some cases. However, if I subvert that concept to look for the “googlebot” user agent and then start feeding out a bunch of search engine spam to get my rankings boosted, that is considered a script cheat. Normally you can spot this sham by the content that is shown on the search engine brief when a search is done and then get to the site and the content isn’t even close. I lost my very high ranking once to a site that had done just that. They were selling insurance and had included my company URL in the spider spam. It included a ton of terms that had nothing to do with my company, it’s products, or anything else. They were simply usurping the power of the name and taking legitimate customers from my site by posing as an affiliated partner – which they weren’t.
Being part of or creating your OWN Link Farms – These are still ranked highly by several search engines much to my disgust. These pages are nothing more than a HUGE collection of links that provide no useful information, but have a ton of links with a tiny bit of associated text. When you have 1000 links each with a little bit of text, you STILL have lots of text for a spider to grab hold of. Search engines have gotten better about recognizing this stuff, but still I think they end up ranking abnormally hgh and provide little information. One that truly ticks me off is the Superpages site. I was looking for something the other day. I kept coming up with these huge lists of links from Superpages. Now why do I need a huge page of links? I want to visit a company that SELLS the stuff, not pages of lists. In some cases maybe huge lists is a good thing, but it defeats the purpose of the search engine as far as I’m concerned. Don’t do it. If you have links, and you should, keep them relevant and complementary to your site.
Hidden text – Some clever webmasters discovered that they could include a load of search terms in the body of their html by either making the text the same color as the background or so small as to be unreadable. While the text was unusable by web surfers, it was picked up by the search engines. By doing this these webmasters just didn’t have to worry about making their content look like they even tried. Ever get to what appears to be a long blank area or whole page that seems to have almost nothing on it? Left click and hold your mouse, drag it through the area. Most likely you see all sorts of text then highlighted. Classic search engine spam.
General META spamming – It’s important to know what terms to use in your META tags. It’s important to use only words that are related to your site. Discovering what words are most frequently searched on the web allows devious webmasters to take that information and then load up their META tags with these words – even if they are completely irrelevant to their site. That’s why searching for something innocuous can still occasionally pull up all grades of porn sites. This HAS improved over the years, but still is out there.
Dummy sites – This consists of setting up a base site and then setting up several other sites, usually on free web host sites, that do nothing more than contain a lot of spammy techniques and then redirect the visitor the actual site. The dummy site may or may not contain anything useful. Either way, if you are immediately redirected or receive a “Click here” to move onto the legit content, it’s probably a dummy site.
WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!
or Danger Will Robinson!
Be aware that using some of the spammy techniques as mentioned can actually get you dropped from a search engine. There are things that the engines look for and at closely. If a search engine decides that a website is spamming or falling out of compliance with their policies, your website very well may get dropped. You will have one heck of a time getting your website back on there. In some cases, you might find it easier to pack it up, correct your content/website, get a new domain name and start over again.
If you discover that your web design company has USED some of these spammy techniques, either demand that they change the site immediately or just flat out get a new designer to clean up the mess. Great ranking for a month or two are usually not the goal of any company. Consistent good rankings are what will bring in the customers in the long run. And the goal of any business site is to generate money. Don’t fall for a quick burst of visitors only to find you’ve been dropped from the search engines the next month.
Read more about what WILL get your website banned from the biggest search engine directly – Google Don’ts Dirty Tricks That Will Get Your Site Banned
By adhering to ethical and standard practices, a site that ranks consistently in most or all search engines is possible.
Website search engines have improved vastly in the last few years. I still have no idea some of the little nuances that search engines actually look for when they spider a website, why some web pages that seem useless rank well, why web pages that seem to have the right content DON’T rank well or even show up at times on the engines or why some sites and pages will rank at the top in one engine and barely even appear on another engine. The search engines will never give away their algorithms for rankings so we’re all in the same boat.