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Post-Penguin Clean-up – Is Your Link Profile Looking Flightless?
Written by Brian Harnish
Tuesday, 04 September 2012 05:24

Have you been hit hard by penguin? Chances are that your link profile is to blame. Link building doesn’t have to be hard - it’s just slow to gain quality links. This is because quality link building takes time.

cleaning up after Penguin update

You can’t build a successful online presence in a day. It takes awhile – but perseverance, tenacity, and thoroughness will get you there. But, you have to be diligent as well. Here are some steps you can take to help vary up your link profile and avoid another penalty.

1. Make sure to vary your anchor text

This should be relatively common sense, and should be part of any good SEO strategy.

Varying up your anchor text links will help you avoid penguin and some other, future link penalties in the future. So, for example, if you’re targeting real estate as a niche, instead of requesting people to use “New York Real Estate” in every instance of anchor text, ask them to use some variations like “New York Homes For Sale” and “Real Estate in New York”.

2. Make sure that you are being linked to from a variety of websites

This is also important. You don’t want to have your link profile look unnatural. An example of an unnatural link profile would be 90% of links come from the exact same type of website and 10% another type of website.

In fact, it’s better and helps to increase your link profile’s value to have your link profile be, say, 25% real estate, 25% contractors, 10% handymen, 20% random, 15% government real estate sites, 5% home inspectors, for example.

If you find that your website was hit by penguin s a result of too much of an unnatural link profile, it’s probably a good idea to go after links from a variety of other websites too. Don’t just focus on one single thing.

3. Consider promoting your website to various news outlets as a way of gaining valuable links

You can also consider going after a variety of news outlets online in an attempt to garner a variety of valuable links. News sites (depending on their niche and quality) tend to be very valuable and also tend to be authority websites that pass on a lot of value.

4. Don’t just consider authority sites – also go after links from other sites too.

Adding variety to your link profile is a great way to ensure that you don’t get hit by the penguin update (or similar updates) again and to ensure your site will be considered valuable to Google in the years to come.

Don’t just consider authority websites – you will also want to gain links from other types of sites too! While they may not be a 100% authority site, they will help your link profile considerably from a variety standpoint.

So, the lesson is: build quality links, build a wide variety of them, and don’t discriminate against authority sites and non-authority sites. Get links whenever and wherever you can so that you can create a more varied link profile.

This way, Google won’t think you’re trying to attack a specific niche of sites and your link profile will end up looking more natural.

Brian Harnish -

Building websites his Brian Harnish's passion. He's been building websites since he taught himself HTML and took a college Photoshop class to create the graphics in the summer of 1998 when he built his first real website. He thoroughly enjoys reading almost anything and everything he can get his hands on regarding SEO, search marketing, as well as web design & development.

Also hook up via


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Last Updated on Tuesday, 04 September 2012 05:31


0 #1 Doc Sheldon 2012-09-04 08:59
Good points, Brian. One additional thing I'd suggest... don't concentrate on just links that aren't nofollowed. I realize that isn't really a Penguin-driven consideration... but a lot of folks still seem to make that mistake.
0 #2 Jason Lancaster 2012-09-04 16:21
In this time of post-penguin paranoia where so many SEOs are talking about removing links, it's nice to read "get links whenever and wherever you can."

In my experience, links are almost always good. When they're not good (i.e. they come from spammy sites), they're almost always devalued. If/when they hurt you, it's often because you created them.

Or at least that's been my experience.
0 #3 Russ Offord 2012-09-06 03:55
The title of this article seems misleading. This article is about link profile 'augmentation' rather than a 'post-penguin hit cleanup'.

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