Google Search Penalty?
One of the basic SEO checks you need to make from the beginning is to ensure that your website is not under a Google penalty.
Google has different penalties (manual and algorithmic) that are imposed as a form of ‘punishment’ to websites that violate their Guidelines.
If your website is hit by a Google penalty, you may have to follow a different route to recover from the penalty first (if possible) and then continue with the SEO checklist.
Login to Google Search Console
If you have not yet registered your website with the Google Search Console, this is the time to do it.
Google Search Console (previously Webmaster tools), is the medium Google is using to communicate with webmasters and inform them about potential problems their websites may have and this includes manual penalties as well.
Before showing where exactly you can find this in Google Search Console tools, it should be mentioned that there are 2 types of penalties and it is important to know their difference.
#1 – Manual Penalty: A human (probably from the Google Quality team), imposed a penalty on your website. This can happen because of a number of reasons and it can be either site-wide i.e. affecting the website as a whole or partial i.e. affecting only some pages of your site.
When this is the case, Google will give you an indication of what the problem is together with a list of actions you can take to correct the issues. Once you make the necessary changes, you can submit a reconsideration request and they will tell you if the penalty has been removed or not.
#2 – Algorithmic Penalty: This is the most common type and it is automatic. Algorithmic penalties are not reported to Google Search console tools and there is no option to fill in a reconsideration request. They only way to identify if you were hit by an automatic penalty, is to use the method described below.
Algorithmic penalties are a result of the continuous changes Google is making to their ranking algorithms (that’s when the animal names mentioned above are gaining more importance for webmasters).
Going back to the example, you can log in to Google Search Console to see if your website is under a manual penalty.
You can find this under SECURITY & MANUAL ACTIONS / MANUAL ACTIONS.
What to do if you have been penalised by Google?
There is no quick answer, search Google about this and you will see various opinions and many things you can do.
To save you valuable time please contact us and we can offer you a technical SEO audit for free to advise you on the possible fixes for your website.