Competition has emerged in every sphere of profession. If you consider yourself self-online, then you might be wrong. There are plenty of risks of losing your traffic on the website before you would even know why. A negative SEO attack is one of the easiest ways to bring down or ruin a competitor’s rankings. But how would you know if you have been attacked and thrown out of SERPs with negative SEO? There are certainly plenty of questions that might be bothering you at this hour. Hence, today we would like to answer some of these and focus on what is negative SEO and how to protect negative SEO attack.
So, the first question that arises on our mind is.
What Is Negative SEO?
A negative SEO Attack is a practice that is aimed at decreasing a competitor’s site rankings in search engines’ results. The notorious job is often performed using black hat SEO and unethical techniques that sabotage a competitor’s ranking. However, there are many ways in which negative SEO attacks may happen. We have mentioned most of the negative SEO tactics below:
1.Creating Bulk Backlinks
By creating bulk backlinks, one can drop down the competitor’s web ranking. It includes tactics, such as low-quality links and content. Negative SEO typically incorporates links from a group of sites or link farms- such as black hats. Having backlinks that lead to irrelevant content results in a low impact score that can lead to a drop in the page’s rank as well. Thus, it results in low traffic on your website.
Another most used negative SEO technique is duplicating contents known as scraping. It involves creating false or duplicate content for many other websites. The scrapers generally copy and paste your contents on various other websites. As per google algorithm, if Google finds the same contents across other sites, it generally de-ranks the duplicate ones. The problem is that most of the scrapers watch your content and post right after you post them. Now, if Google finds the scrapped one first, it would de-rank yours.
Hacking is one of the most used negative SEO techniques. It can wreak havoc on your website ranking by injecting low-grade content and removing all your important backlinks from your website. They can even put duplicate contents of some other websites on your one. It would then result in the de-ranking of your website. Hence, hacking is another negative SEO attack that can happen to you. Look out for any abnormalities on your site to trace hacking. If your website has been hacked, you may not be able to control it. If you find any content on your website not posted by you, contact your webmaster as soon as possible and discover how it is published.
4.Fake Comments and Reviews
Fake comments or negative reviews are other types of negative SEO tactics. As we all know, reviews matter a lot. Negative feedback does not de-rank your website, but it can leave negative impressions on your website. Desperate competitors can, therefore, put many negative reviews on your website and manipulate your audience. Thus, they can divert your traffic to their websites.
Heavy crawling is another negative SEO attack that is made when your competitor is desperate to hurt you but lacks enough information. They then may try to forcefully crawl into your that would slow it or even crash it altogether. Such repeated incidents may bring down your search engine’s credibility.
How To Protect Negative SEO Attack?
While talking about negative SEO attacks, the first question that comes to our mind is. “Does a Negative SEO attack happen?” It is one of the most controversial questions one can ever face. Many would answer you that it does not, while others would say it is true. Let us understand it this way: Negative SEO attack is real indeed. However, they are unlikely to happen- because of the advancement in Google’s algorithm and security. There was one time when Negative SEO used to be a threat to the websites. Nevertheless, after Google’s Panda launch, Google gave this a serious thought and abolished almost everything related to it. Hence, people would likely waste their money if they are trying to negative SEO attack you.
But that does not make it a ‘not to fear’ thing. Just because it is ‘unlikely’ to happen, it does not mean it will not. Therefore, you should keep an eye over everything that is happening to your website- starting from a slight drop of the rank to removing any backlink. You must be careful about the attacks that may come from with-in.
It means that to de-rank your website, not always someone outsider would be required. If you, by any chance, hire an inexperienced SEO specialist or hire some dishonest writer, your ranking can also get harmed. Hence, before you blame any external negative SEO attack, check the internal ones at least once.
If you find nothing with-in, confusion regarding what is negative SEO and how to protect negative SEO attack should go away by following these following steps:
Clear Your Backlink Profile in Case You Find Something Unusual
You can keep your website safe from bulk backlinks or low-quality links if you trace them early enough. One of the best ways to protect your website from these low-quality backlinks is to keep track of your links every day. In case you find something unusual, clear your backlink profile before any damage occurs.
Report If You Find Duplicate Content
You can keep your website the same from scrapping by reporting the duplicate contents. To find those there are some useful tools such as Copyscape that help you find those duplicate contents easily. As soon as you get those, report to google.
Make It Hack-Proof
By focusing on website security and auditing your website regularly, you can stay safe from hacking and malware. Always remember that if you have your website’s administratorship, you have the control. When you lose it, there is hardly anything that you can do.
Keep in Touch with Your Webmaster
The webmaster is the one who can keep your website safe and secure. If you find anything unusual on your website, do not delay in informing your webmaster. They have plenty of methods to fix it. Look for the significant backlinks too. If any of these is removed, ask your webmaster why it has been done.
While negative SEO is not that easy to happen, two questions that bother us a lot are what is negative SEO and how to protect negative SEO attack? It would be a terrifying experience to lose everything that you have achieved all these years. Your hard work and dedication must not go in vain. Negative SEO attacks can happen in many ways (as described above). If you think that your site has become a victim of such an attack, don’t be late to take any action. Also, prevention is better than cure. By taking preventive methods, you can also keep these attacks away. Now, as you know what is negative SEO and how to protect negative SEO attack, stay safe and keep your assets well-protected.