Google’s Over Optimisation Penalty

Have you noticed your rankings on Google have changed recently? It is common knowledge that our chums at Google have been tweaking things with what has been described as an ‘over optimisation penalty’ for sites that they perceive to be over SEO’ed.

What this means is that Google plans to drop sites from their search engine results pages that they perceive to be over optimised for search (i.e. good at SEO), but with poor content. The purpose of doing this is to give more prominence to sites with great updated and relevant content over search engine optimisation.

The penalty has already kicked in and many sites have dropped from their lofty positions causing webmasters around the globe to go a little ‘potty’  as a result. Quite right too because their SEO efforts have been suddenly scuppered by Google.

Is this change right?

Personally, I think Google is doing the right thing by trying to clean up their search engine result pages and if this means weeding out bad sites then I am all for it. For webmasters, as long as your site is optimised in the correct way and your content is good and unique then you should be fine.

Below is a video from produced Rand Fishkin at SEOmoz that provides an overview of what to do consider for your website in line of these Google changes.  It is worth a watch and gives you an idea of what you might want to do or consider from your websites perspective. Main areas the video covers are:

Keyword Use in Title tags
Links on your site
Text purely for search engines
External back links
Duplicate Content

Please note that these Google changes are happening now so our advice would be to keep an eye on how your website performs in the next wee while to see if it has been affected. If you haven’t been providing new content on a regular basis then there is a reason to worry. It will be worthwhile to come up with a plan of action to ensure that your website is achieving consistent good rankings by reviewing your current content.

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