Don't Challenge Google Penguin

Don't Challenge Google Penguin pixelwork

Don't Challenge Google Penguin

One of the most painful Google changes that can hit a website is called Google Penguin. Google Penguin aims delete the sites of the search results who have been trying to challenge Google by purchasing or “unnatural acquisition”  of links to the website. It does this by basically applying a negative value to specific links. So if you have certain links, your ratings will be lower, not higher.

“Luckily,” if a site gets hit by Google Penguin, 9 out of 10 times, the owner has played with the search engine and could see it coming. Most of the sites affected by Google Penguin have bought links from the so-called link networks: “private blog networks” or whatever name you want to give it.

google-penguin-seoGet rid of Google Penguin

If you have been hit by Google Penguin you probably need help. You will have to identify which links are bad and having those links removed. Disavowing links is something you can do through the Google tool “Google Disavow”. It allows you to upload a file with URLs and domains that have links where you say, “I don't want these links to count.” The file has to be in a specific format.

Google Penguin and Negative SEO

There is a very unpleasant side effect of Google Penguin, which Google generally hasn't talked about but which I have seen is very real. Because certain links have a negative value, they can be used in a negative way. You can buy links to your competitor and cause them to be affected by Penguin. This is not easy to do, but sometimes it happens and it can be very bad for business if you do.

There are several services out there that can look at your backlink profile and can help you do a link deactivation in a proactive way, I personally like LinkResearchTools and Kerboo. This, fortunately, is not necessary in most niches, but in some of the more aggressive niches it might be something you need.

¿Google Penguin in real time?

I have talked about Google Penguin running “from time to time”. Google has said for a while now that it is going to make Google Penguin real-time, but so far, we haven't seen any evidence of this yet. However, if this happens, the risks of negative SEO become much greater.


You should not buy links. Never. The risk is too great. Google Penguin has made it very clear. There are some negative side effects of Google Penguin that most people won't have to worry about, but if they do get to you, it can be very painful.

The basic idea about links is simple: you can buy a link, but it's not worth it no matter what and should generally be considered a risk. Links have to be earned, through good public relations, interesting tools, good marketing, etc.