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HTML Help: Lost Rankings
I joined a link club to increase my site's link popularity, and about a month later my site fell way down in the search engines. What happened, is link popularity just a myth?Link popularity is definitely not a myth—the myth is that link clubs help with link popularity.
For those that don't know, a link club, more commonly referred to as a link farm, is where you sign up with a web site to have your link placed on a link page on other web sites in exchange for you placing the same link page on your site.
In theory, it was an ingenious idea. Those wanting more links to their site to increase their traffic only had to download and place a common link page on their site to have a link to their site placed on hundreds or even thousands of other web site's link pages.
The link farm site would be responsible for attracting new link partners and providing and maintaining the common link page all sites would use, and your only requirement was to replace the old link page with an updated page at specified intervals. It was a very minimal amount of work for a lot of links to your site.
The trouble with the concept is that the search engines consider those links as worse than worthless. To the search engines, link farms are search engine spam!
That's why they dropped your site way down in their listings—they consider you a search engine cheat! You may even find some search engines have completely dropped your site from their database.
If you'd like to try to regain search engine status, the first thing to do is immediately delete that link farm page from your site. For search engines that only dropped your site ranking but didn't drop your site from their database, the next time their spider comes back to your site you should regain some of your former placement.
If any search engines have dropped your site from their database, you may want to write to them and explain what happened and that you didn't know link farms were a no-no, apologize, and assure them that if they will kindly reindex your site that you will never join a link farm again. They get a lot of email, so keep your message short and to the point.
With Google, you can submit a Reconsideration Request. Just sign up for a free webmaster account with them, and once inside look for the link and explain what happened. It can take anywhere from weeks to months, so try not to lose your patience.
Remember, your link page's list of links should be unique to your site, not the exact same as hundreds of other link pages. The search engine software automatically detects duplicate link lists.
By the way, link farms are reason #12 in the list of common causes of trouble with search engines in my SEO for YOU ebook. Too bad you didn't read that before you got into search engine trouble! I wrote about it in the very first edition several years ago.
This concludes the
HTML Help about Lost Rankings.
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