You may have noticed the slew of posts today about manual action being taken against a large guest blog network with speculation that it is MyBlogGuest.
Today we took action on a large guest blog network
It was later confirmed by Ann Smarty of MyBlogGuest that it was indeed MyBlogGuest.
Ann Smarty later goes on to ask, that she hopes that publishers don’t get penalised.
MyGuestBlog Publishers Penalised
I will stick my hand up. Last year when MyBlogGuest came to my attention I wanted to see what it was all about and registered 2 of my personal blogs.
I accepted 7 articles for one site and 4 articles on the other over a period of two months. I will admit it was a welcome boost to producing content for the sites, but the feel of the articles were not quite right, perhaps they did not carry my personality or feel.
Today after all this furor I checked my WMT and bingo, two Manual Actions for participating in a Link Scheme. I can’t say i am surprised, Google will have amassed all the details and sites listed on MyBlogGuest as these are the Link Network.
What has surprised me is how small the threshold is 7 and 4 articles in my case.
Naturally I have added rel=”nofollow” to the articles, but looking at my analytics i removed 4 of the 7 articles for little or no traffic (perhaps the readers realised they did not convey my personality) and on the other site 1 of the 4 articles, again for little or no traffic.
Naturally i have submitted a Recon Request, apologising, falling on my sword for being a Dick and detailed the pages with rel=”nofollow” added and the pages removed.
Google recommends include:
- Remove the offending links from your site — Perhaps the simplest way to get rid of links affecting your search result ranking is just to take them down. This may not be feasible if you entered into an agreement with another site in exchange for a backlink, but you can also contact other site owners to notify them of your decision and attempt to terminate such a deal.
- Add a rel=“nofollow” attribute — The “nofollow” attribute tells search engines and robots not to crawl for specific links. This can help keep your site from passing PageRank to unfavorable neighborhoods on the internet, and the attribute will enable Googlebot to crawl other pages you would prefer to see in the search giant’s index.
- Redirect the links through a page blocked by robot.txt — Using robot.txt URLs will also help change links so they do not pass PageRank.
After removing unnatural links from your site, you can submit a reconsideration request to Google showing that you have taken steps to correct the problem.
Personally i think this is a PR stunt by Google. Their official line will be that publishers have no editorial choice to “nofollow” the link and i do think this was wrong by MyBlogGuest to insist on “dofollow”.
However Tripadvisor has been pulling this stunt for the past decade. If you change the attribute in a Tripadvisor link to “nofollow” the widget breaks, thereby removing editorial control.
If Google takes this stance with smaller sites, then they must take action on the larger sites !
As mentioned earlier this is a personal blog, so never a lot of traffic, but given the “penalty” my traffic is improving. I assume this is because of the small percentage of “linked” content that the site published.
This may not be the same with a site that relied solely on published content.