Dear Google, It wasn't me, it was my SEO!

24 comments
Source Title:
Filing a reinclusion request
Story Text:

I'm soooo loving Matt Cutts' new blog, there's just so much to dig into! Take Filing a reinclusion request as a good example. Go on, read it.

Done that? Liar...

Here's the good bit:

Now we come to the heart of things: what goes into a reinclusion request. Fundamentally, Google wants to know two things: 1) that any spam on the site is gone or fixed, and 2) that it’s not going to happen again. I’d recommend giving a short explanation of what happened from your perspective: what actions may have led to any penalties and any corrective action that you’ve taken to prevent any spam in the future. If you employed an SEO company, it indicates good faith if you tell us specifics about the SEO firm and what they did–it assists us in evaluating reinclusion requests. Note that SEO and mostly-affiliate sites may need to provide more evidence of good faith before a site will be reincluded; such sites should be quite familiar with Google’s quality guidelines.

Isn't that great? Something for all the family..

  • The weekend warriors get a "howto" for when they over do it
  • The White Hat Supremicists get something to link to every time someone even mentions SEO
  • Threadwatchers get to mull over the implications of Google wanting to know who your SEO was if you have to file a reinclusion request...

Genius...

Comments

"the implications of Google wanting to know who your SEO was "

Yes, hit me that bit.

Big Brother??

Posted by Trisha

I hate it when we post at the same time :) This was posted by Trisha, who had some more grownup things to say on the post...

Quote:

I had been under the impression that you only did reinclusion requests if your site was actually banned - with nothing returned with the 'site:' command. But apparently not, in his blog entry Matt said (when referring to when to do a reinclusion request) "and your site has taken a precipitous drop recently".

He seemed, to me anyway, to also suggest that anyone doing affiliate type of sites should be familiar with their guidelines well enough to know what it is on their sites that Google doesn't like. I don't know if that is the case, its not for me anyway. In many of the Bourbon 'my site has been dropped' posts it seems like many others don't know what they've done wrong either.

At any rate, its a good blog entry from Matt explaining all in one place how to do a reinclusion request properly.

I suspect wanting info on

I suspect wanting info on SEO companies is as much an issue of looking for consistency in the requests - ie, if they get a flood of "we've been banned, our SEO is done by TP" then Google may be able to fast-track requests that state they had SEO performed by TP.

Spoilsport

Spoilsport

I had been under the

Quote:
I had been under the impression that you only did reinclusion requests if your site was actually banned - with nothing returned with the 'site:' command. But apparently not, in his blog entry Matt said (when referring to when to do a reinclusion request) "and your site has taken a precipitous drop recently".

That bit stuck out for me as well. I wonder if Matt is aware of how many times those of us who moderate on forums where noobs often come in to ask questions have to explain the difference between a penalty and a ban.

Offcourse they do!

A growing number of SEO companies that engage in contractual relationships with Google - in the form of the AdWords Professional program, comission agreements etc. All such agreements, I have seen, include a paragraph that basically state that the SEO/SEM firm have to abide by all Google guidelines. So, if Google catch them spamming it will be a violation of such a deal.

I don't know of this is the reason Google want to know the name of the SEO-firm that spam is reported on but it would just seem very logic to me.

I know many SEO-firms that sign such deals and then just keep on spamming away. You all know I have nothing against so-called search engine spam, but I do think that if you enter a deal you should honor it - even a deal with (evil) Google :) That's why I do not enter such deals with my firms og firms I consult. I like to operate only limited by law :)

Hmmm. Who Is That Post Really Aimed At?

Do Mom & Pop Company Owner or even Mr. & Ms. Fortune 500 Company Owner even knows who Matt is or that his Blog even exists? Hmm... who is reading his Blog? So hmmm, who is this post really aimed at?

Future Forums Post to Be:

"So I think a competitor of mine reported me to Google, and now all of my client sites have tanked...."

Natasha "That Girl From Marketing" Robinson

Conspiracy (theory)

Google controls their serps, either by automatically setting up filters or by hand editing, nothing wrong with that, it's their web property.

Google approaches SEO customers directly to let them know that Google is doing a better job setting up Adwords campains. Google emploiees run competing Adwords campains, bidding up SEO customers keywords.

Google is penalizing sites and banning sites for violating their rules. In the application for reinclusion customers must report the SEO involved.

Google is contracting SEO companies which probably will be banned for violating any rules set up by Google and which are, by signing the contract, bound to defend Google, not their customers.

Am I paranoid?

you have to love that blog....

>> Hmm... who is reading his Blog?

those with long tongues and brown noses?

Seriously, it's interesting (perhaps from different viewpoints depending on our pov), its a great piece of PR and it's going to work brilliantly with the target audience (lets guess forum regulars with 6-12 months lurking/posting shall we?) I have much more respect for Googles PR machine now than 3 months ago so good luck to them.....

Matt missed a few things out

Matt missed a few things out imho.

The classic reinclusion request should include:

1. My webmaster/seo did it all without my knowledge, they must have hacked my FTP to upload those 172,000 pages.

2. I have fired my webmaster/seo

3. Even though I have had a web business for 5 years I have no knowledge whatsoever about the Internet.

4. I have worked long and hard for many years.

5. I will have to fire my staff.

6. Google/Yahoo/etc is a great search engine.

That seems to be the template that most people use. Personally I think that a bit of honesty should be worked into the request but it seems that people think this could work against them.

Which reminds me about how honesty pays. In a previous life I was somewhat a stickler for timekeeping, I'd fire on the first transgression. So the guy strolls in 30 mins late, I say where the !@*$ you been;

"To be honest Boss the new Anne Summers catalogue came in the post this morning so I waited till the wife had gone to work and then knocked one out on the sofa."

He kept the job.

"a great piece of PR and it's going to work brilliantly "

Quote:
I have much more respect for Googles PR machine now than 3 months ago

You mean they are noy as thick as you thought they were??

I mean

they may have finally realised we aren't as thick as they thought we were....

There's a huge difference between being intelligent and being smart. I think their PR dept may have just started to wise up. Hurrah.

That's one for the next T-shirt run at Cafe Press ...

'You don't have to be w*nker to work here, but it helps.'

Am I the only one who read Aaron Wall's comment on that blog?

Quote:
>Don’t bother mentioning that you spend money on AdWords or you’re an AdSense publisher. The person who will look at your reinclusion request doesn’t care if you have a business relationship with Google.

Not once, but twice, different webmasters I know and trust well have told me their organic Google problems have been solved through their AdWords ad reps.

Both times there was an obvious penalty on the site and the problems were corrected within a few days. These were high spending accounts though.

Google has *always* denied that their adwords program has any affect on the organic search. Apparently, however, if you are a big enough spender, they can certainly tweak their results for you.

If this is true, this is *huge*.

no big deal imho

I've heard that lots - but I never understand it as it as the spend directly effecting the reinclusion - I always read it as the adwords rep for the account going and having a chat with the algo engineers and coming back to suggest what might have caused the penalty so offensive stuff could be removed and a reinclusion request submitted.

Possibly a little unfair advice I agree but not really mindblowing - GoogleGuy has been (I'm told) doing that at WMW for years?

Adwords

>If this is true, this is *huge*.

I'm certainly not saying I agree with it, but is it so difficult to believe that an account rep who was managing a large adwords account would go a little bit above and beyond (say by asking a favor of their fellow employee in the "unbanning department") for one of their big clients?

It doesn't really seem that far fetched to me. Just logical capitalism. Having a large adwords spend definitely WON'T help you get your site in after you pushed the edge a bit too far. Knowing an account rep that's willing to go above and beyond for you might though;)

Is there hidden text, hidden

Quote:
Is there hidden text, hidden links, or cloaking on your site, especially on the front page?

"Especially on the front page"

WTF???

Presumably my 120,000 cloaked interior pages are not as severe an offense.

You're not their target marketing...

Quote:
Presumably my 120,000 cloaked interior pages are not as severe an offense.

As I think Matt previously said, they're not sending these emails to sites like that, but to the unsuspecting legitimate business owner.

Google Authorized SEO

Perhaps Google should start SEO Seminars for SEO firms for a fee of coarce. SEO firms will pass the seminar and become a "Google Authorized SEO". This way small site owners will know who is reputable and who is not.

Not likely, I'd say

It makes sense for Google to give their seal of approval to PPC managers, since they're making money off of it, but to give thumbs up to an SEO is a bit risky. G don't want to be blamed by a client who got ripped off by an SEO who got their approval and then changed his/her practices, or made a mistake, or got caught doing something the search engine only recently started punishing sites for.

Unless Google gets a piece of an approved SEO's business, I don't see any benefit for them in it. That being said (just in case Matt is reading and is looking for someone to recommend), my work has always been clean as a whistle -- a very very clean whistle.

G don't want to be blamed by

Quote:
G don't want to be blamed by a client who got ripped off by an SEO who got their approval and then changed his/her practices, or made a mistake, or got caught doing something the search engine only recently started punishing sites for.

That's really the problem with the idea in general. I have had people ask me to do some sort of certification with my seminars, etc., but really, I don't want that kind of responsibility. Just because you take my seminar doesn't mean you actually learned what was taught. And even if you did learn it, it doesn't actually mean you are implementing it on your client's sites.

Would be great if we could offer a certification, but it would be a ton of work policing those who get the certificates, imo.

policing I can't see anyone

policing

I can't see anyone but the search engines doing the policing. Too much conflict there.

If there was any course I probably would fail following the rules / being policed / or whatever. I still ended up being able to do ok for a few terms though.

policing

Well, the policing would have to be for a couple of different things. If it were a certification from the search engines, they'd have to police the sites to ensure that aren't doing any sort of deceptive SEO. Not sure if they would want or need to police whether the certified people actually got rankings though.

For someone like me to do it, I'd probably have to police both aspects.

And I agree, there would be conflict, assuming I was also doing SEO myself still. Would probably have to be out of the biz completely to do something like that so there wouldn't be a conflict.

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