If you’ve woken up today to find that your website no longer seems to exist, that it’s disappeared from the rankings even when it had been stable for years, then you can take some solace from the fact that you are not alone.
Google made a major update to their algorithm yesterday (the 24th April 2012), and the results have been… interesting to say the least. Undoubtedly some of the weird results will be sorted out over the coming weeks.
This update was aimed at dealing with bad or black hat practices involving dodgy link building practices (and we’re proud to say that we alerted Google to one of these that they have targeted in yesterdays update – this is a great, positive step), to keyword stuffing, and to sites that make it hard to find the content (where there are predominantly ads above the fold rather than content).
If your website has been hit, or even if it hasn’t, then you should start to take action now!
Do not spam links. You might perhaps want to bookmark your website, or add it to a major business directory, but that’s all you should do. You shouldn’t be out there (or employing companies to do it for you) creating as many links as possible from as many sites as possible.
You should NEVER EVER under ANY circumstances us software designed to spam links, like scrapebox or xrumer programs.
You should also make sure that your website does not cram as many instances of the keywords you want to rank for into each page, and you should make sure that your website is easy to navigate for people and search engines.
It appears that you should avoid redirecting other URLs or pages to your site.
And make sure that your site is aimed at the visitor having a good experience, than focusing on just you and how much money you can make.
We’ve said it time and again, but you really should be building your site for your visitors, not for yourself.
Anyway, if your site has been hit it is not the end of the world, just fix the issues Google has been targeting and make sure your website is aimed at visitors and you should be okay.
If you need any help let us know.
(Learn more about the update in Google’s own words here)