Want to know what gets you banned from Google? We’re here to fill you in. It’s best to follow our guidelines to stay on Google’s good side.
Most people don’t really think of Google as the kind of search engine that bans sites, but it is. Believe it or not, Google’s stringent algorithm and high standards for site quality often means that the search engine bans sites that would otherwise be considered perfectly fine. If you want to avoid getting banned from Google, it’s best to follow these guidelines.
- Avoid Blackhat SEO – Blackhat SEO is basically the dark side of search engine optimization. Just like the Sith forces tended to do things the evil way, blackhat SEO basically takes advantage of search engine algorithms by churning out sites that aren’t user-friendly, but are crawler-friendly. Common blackhat tactics include hidden text, keyword stuffing, and using copied content. Google hates this with a passion since it reduces the quality of the results, and regularly bans sites that fall into the blackhat optimized category. For more info on this, be sure to read our article on the Dos and Dont’s of SEO.
- Buying Mass Traffic Is A No–No –Another thing that skews search engine rankings is faux traffic that is bought en masse. This is often grouped under the blackhat umbrella because it tends to push lower quality sites to higher rankings, which once again, Google doesn’t like.
- Disguising Adult Content – Google is very careful to avoid ranking adult content highly on its search engine. When adult sites do end up on search engine rankings, Google often will be quick to ban them for anything from suspicion of viruses to disguising the fact that they are adult in nature. To be fair, Google does this in order to keep nasty stuff away from the eyes of kids. So, if you do want to put adult stuff on your site, make sure to be upfront about it.
- Don’t Link Up With Bad Sites – Link building schemes, especially ones with content directories, tend to get peoples’ sites banned overnight. Bad backlinks tend to mean that your site is subpar in quality. Bad link practice also includes doorway links, which are links that bring users to content that has nothing to do with the site’s original content.
- Don’t Scrape Content – Scraping content is defined as copying and/or spinning content that already exists on the net. Google bans sites that do this quickly and without mercy. Copied content, or robot written content will be flagged by search engines as low quality, and will end up getting you penalized.
- Don’t Give Users Viruses – This should be common sense. Malware rich sites are almost always penalized by Google for one reason or another. Make sure that your site is as secure as possible, folks! And install those latest patches!
- Avoid Using Keywords That Aren’t Related To Your Site – If you have a site about hamsters, why would you use keywords like “Rocket Fuel” or “Potatoes?” Back in the old days of the internet, people did this because they hoped it would get random visitors to the site. Nowadays, misleading keywords will get you almost instantly banned.
- Automated Inquiries Don’t Sit Well, Either – Basically, what Google wants to see is that you’re human and not a robot. Automated inquiries, or searches that seem generated by a computer, don’t help this cause! One blackhat SEO tactic involves having a program run a bunch of fake searches to increase your page rank. Google is smarter than this and will ban you outright.
A good rule of thumb to follow is that if you feel like what you’re doing for SEO is sneaky, then it most likely is going to get you penalized by Google once crawlers realize what you’re up to. So, don’t be sneaky! Stay whitehat by following Google’s Steps to a Google-friendly Site, along with our own tips, and you’ll be in the clear and hopefully never banned from Google.