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    Backlink Issue / Switching to another domain


    Hi there,

    A friend of mine has a website for his hotel business and someone offered to help improve google rankings for them however it seems like all they've done is pick the top search term and automatically generate 200k+ backlinks on random sites listed with this term. Nightmare.
    We're tried over the past couple of months to sort the issue out and inbound links have decreased but it's a seemingly impossible task so I'm thinking the best decision would be to ditch this domain and start again. The site content is working well for all related search terms but the top search term doesn't yield the site anywhere as far as we can tell, and related terms are very similar.
    So my question is If we switch domains, pointing the new to the existing server will google pick up the site as the same and it's a catch 22 or would the backlink issue be sorted?

    If anyone could provide any info (or links to info) on this it would be much appreciated.

    Thanks
    Rich
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    Noj
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    Yes I did with a site which had over 2,000,000 back links.

    The site picked up an auto penalty for a lack of branded text when Google first introduce the brand update.

    The original guys didn't think they could alter the link profile but tried anyway, building branded links to alter the shape of the link profile.

    This failed due to sale and numbers of links needed.

    We then changed the domain and lost the penalty and returned to the original positions with 24 hours, much rejoicing all round.

    However as we were busy/lazy we didn't alter the link profile, and two months a later when a substantial number of links had been redirected the penalty returned.

    We then redirected to a third domain, and attacked the existing links especially the site wide non branded links on the largest sites. By removing or branding the largest 30 site wide links we changed the domains link profile enough for the positions to remain till this point which is over 12 months.

    The moral of the story a redirect will fix your issue in the short term, if you don't fix what caused the penalty it will come back and bite you on the bum.

    But I would do a redirect to domain you don't want to keep long term to see what you can learn, test and play if results are stable then redirect again to a desired domain.

    Comments on this post

    • JBacchi agrees : wow, first time I've seen a Doula advertised. :)
    • EGOL agrees : Noj, this is really valuable information. The original poster should send you a nice gift. :P
    • chiragparekh agrees : Great advice
    Last edited by Noj; Jul 5th, 2012 at 02:21 PM.
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    Originally Posted by Noj
    Yes I did with a site which had over 2,000,000 back links....
    Hi Noj,

    Thanks for your response and the info provided. Sounds like a very similar issue we're encountering here and as I thought best to change domain so our plan is to order the new domain today and following that start the migration process. You mentioned that the old domain you had was redirected to the new domain (I assume to avoid 404's for existing customers) however we're looking to start afresh and switch the old domain off completely, so my next question would be is it safe to point the new domain to the old domains server and run from the same ip address or shall we get a new server completely (perhaps at a new hosting company) to escape google putting two and two together?

    Again, thanks for your help it's much appreciated.

    Thanks
    Rich
    Last edited by core; Jul 5th, 2012 at 09:29 PM.
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    Originally Posted by Noj
    The site picked up an auto penalty for a lack of branded text when Google first introduce the brand update.
    You believe sites can get hit if they don't have enough branded anchor text?.
    I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught. ~Winston Churchill
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    Originally Posted by DarrenHaye
    You believe sites can get hit if they don't have enough branded anchor text?.
    Certainly seems that way for us, we are appearing top or first page at least for certain search terms (related to the main search term) and the SEO 'guru' who thought he could help for the main search term basically plastered the key term as anchor text and link to the site on 100's of thousands of external sites and now it isn't appearing anywhere for that.
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    Originally Posted by core
    Certainly seems that way for us, we are appearing top or first page at least for certain search terms (related to the main search term) and the SEO 'guru' who thought he could help for the main search term basically plastered the key term as anchor text and link to the site on 100's of thousands of external sites and now it isn't appearing anywhere for that.
    I myself if i were building links would go with a major % of brand/domain name anchor text, maybe 80/90% and the other 10/20% a real diverse mix of keywords.

    I've heard it been said that you can use keywords 100% just as long as they're as diverse as possible.

    I would never go with a sitewide keyword anchor text though, such as on a blogroll.

    I might start a thread on this topic, gauge some others opinions.. but yeah, just interested in noj's experience.
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    Noj
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    Yes, dependent on market.

    This was an aggressive market, if aiming for 'flower gadrens in dorechester' don't worry about it so much.

    If you targeting , car insurance, SEO, gambling , or PI claims its a massive factor.

    Originally Posted by DarrenHaye
    You believe sites can get hit if they don't have enough branded anchor text?.
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    Noj
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    Yes you can run from the same server, I would not worry from that.

    If the domains is old I wouldn't just throw all the good link equity away.

    Have you tried altering or remodelling the damaged link profile ?

    If you can do that it may save you 10,000's of pounds in link building costs and lots of new business.

    Remodelling alone rarely gets you back quick ,remodelling and redirect does.


    Originally Posted by core
    Hi Noj,

    Thanks for your response and the info provided. Sounds like a very similar issue we're encountering here and as I thought best to change domain so our plan is to order the new domain today and following that start the migration process. You mentioned that the old domain you had was redirected to the new domain (I assume to avoid 404's for existing customers) however we're looking to start afresh and switch the old domain off completely, so my next question would be is it safe to point the new domain to the old domains server and run from the same ip address or shall we get a new server completely (perhaps at a new hosting company) to escape google putting two and two together?

    Again, thanks for your help it's much appreciated.

    Thanks
    Rich

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