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Search Engine Optimization Pro

I'm Dave Keys, real estate SEO expert and I have surveyed your website and links to it. I have a few observations. I'll divide those between several comments and finish with SEO expert Steve Wiideman's Penguin Recovery suggestions.

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Again, I'm answering blind other than looking at your site- that is, I'm not asking what keyword you were after or how badly you got hurt or when, exactly because I want to point out some generalities that match Google's efforts to change search results forever.

Concept #1. Algorithms Work Together

We hear of updates and their project names and each one takes on an almost metaphoric life of its own. Farmers, Pandas and Penguins and whatever is next like the rumored Leopard are not the iconic rogue creatures they almost seem to be in the media hype surrounding Google's updates.

They are elements of a functioning whole. Let's compare Google for a moment to a commercial jet. Boeing introduced the 707 in 1958 and the similar 737 in 1967. The 737 is still in production today but we can be certain that every aspect of the 737 is a far cry from the first one. Everything from navigation to propulsion has been modified, upgraded and improved and as in all aircraft, upgrades are engineered to work seamlessly with current systems as well as anticipated future systems.

That's the concept with Google too. Their team of engineers works on solutions that are integrated and cooperative with past, present and anticipated systems of classifying web content.

My point of all this is that I don't believe Penguin alone is necessarily responsible for an entire shift in any particular website but that it is rather like the final push on a wrench when you're trying to loosen a bolt on a car engine. It's just the one that finished a longer effort successfully. The goal all the time was to loosen the bolt and get the part removed.

If you look at Google's algorithms holistically the way they do, it makes sense that a single algorithm may have a dramatic effect on some websites. We'll look at yours next.

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Google's Multilateral Effort: Increase quality and accuracy of results.

We know that one of the main considerations of content classification is the page title so let's look at the title of your home page:

*Post Free Classified Ads - USA Classifieds - Personals, Real Estate, Pets Ads Free Ads *

I put the first part of the title, "Post Free Classified Ads..." and the website places #4 in search. Not a bad result in this competitive space.

Now, the disappointment must come from other results because #4 may not be where you'd like, but it's not in the "suffered badly" category either.

What other keywords may have fallen off the charts?

I drew down some data from Majestic SEO on your recent links. Here's your recent 30 day link distribution of anchor text:

44.58% of the links come from 7 domains with the anchor text "Free Classifieds" is that enough to trigger something? Perhaps. It's a hard shift from the anchors in Majestic's historical link archive.

Not only that, but the anchor is one of those two word phrases with a lot of commercial intent with a lot of known competition according to the Google Adword Keyword Tool (they know when you want money to flow)
adword results

Next we'll look at the quality factors of the website and websites that link to it.

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Google Wants Quality Content

Now, we know that some sites are commercial and that's OK. But how do you measure the quality of one commercial website against another? Back in the pre-Christmas shopping season of 2011, JC Penny got caught employing low quality and paid links from everywhere so that they ranked #1 for "black dresses." Now, even as a guy, I know that good black dresses are not likely to be purchased by discerning women from your old JCP but probably rather Nordstroms or Macys. Maybe J Crew but not JCP. That place is a glorified low-mid range discount retailer and we all know it. They are not party-dress central so they got turned in by annoyed competitors or someone.

Quality of sites linking to JCP was as poor as offshore sites about poetry by engineering students with an odd link for "black dresses" to JCP. The rare manual adjustment was made to bring down the violator and Google kept working on making this problem go away permanently.

Let's look at some your website's typical content layout:

alt text


• Top of the page contains a Google Ad.
• Top of the fold contains Ads and Ad space
• Sidebar contains Ads.
"Content" is relegated to three very short paragraphs in the footer area.

I looked up the Google index of pages on the website and they look like pretty much the same thing, some with specific ads on them. Google indexed all 50k pages anyway.

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Now, let's look at some links to your website

Top Link:
Let's look at it.


• This is one of your top links
• Link exchange ad at top (link farm central)
Spammy High ad ratio website. No, I'll just stick with Spammy.

The other top links I selected had the same kind of results. I'm not going to belabor it. We all know what has to be done. There is a famous movie with actor Jim Carrey, Liar Liar where he can no longer lie. A client asks for advice and Carrey's character screams over the phone for him to stop breaking the law.

That's what your client will have to do.

Google has laid down the law and figured out how to better enforce it so start creating content on the site- even a little and Google may reward it better. Links should also come from sites that aren't stuffed with spam have some relevant content on them too. This may not be as easy as buying links on link farms but it's what will get placed better in search- probably from now on out.

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Finally the finale

Steve Wiideman's Recommendations

The main causes of penalization include:

  1. Too much explicit anchor text pointing to the site and subpages
  2. Over-optimization of page copy (keyword stuffing)
  3. Too many links from non-authoritative websites

You might see some warnings in Google Webmaster Tools (many webmasters have already seen an "unnatural links" warning). It may take some time to get back into Google's good graces, but with the following action list, you should be able to expedite the process:

  1. Identify inbound anchor text with over 60% explicit keywords using, or Use a spreadsheet with a column for "Page Classification" (blog, link network, article syndication network, or irrelevant)

  2. Remedy the bad links. Refer to your tracking spreadsheet from (1.), sort by lowest domain authority and remove links from all questionable (unnatural-appearing) domains.

  3. Analyze keyword density on the pages affected. Keep overall keyword density under 4%. Replace explicit anchor text and phrases with semantic terms, plurals, and modifying words (click here to see, etc)

  4. Check for duplicate content. If a page moved down in the search results, review that page's content to insure it not duplicate of some other page online. Copy 5 or 6 sequential words and paste them into Google search using quotes.

  5. De-optimize the website. Remove overstuffed keywords, reduce the number of internal links, remove reciprocal links

  6. Add "nofollow" to external links that might considered questionable in content or authority

  7. Improve the content. Give content on core keyword-themed pages at least 2-3 hours each if possible. Include good spelling and grammar, headings, subheadings, reference tables, videos, etc.

  8. Add more social elements. Include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+ sharing. Not just a button that takes the user away from the website.

  9. Add video. Create a video for each keyword themed page of content. Link the page from the description field of the video sharing networks. Include a video XML sitemap

  10. Add custom imagery. Include screenshots, diagrams, photos, infographics. Upload and share to Pinterest, Flickr, and Picasa.

  11. Get listed with trusted data sources: BBB, chamber of commerce, industry associations/memberships, Acxiom, InfoUSA, etc.

  12. Leadership promotion. Get the executive leadership featured in the hometown newspaper. Newspapers have thousands of pages of content, receive lots of traffic, and are trusted by the search engines.

Be sure to start with Google Webmaster Tools ( to make sure there are no warnings first. Going forward, plan ONE solid placement per month in an authoritative/trust-worthy destination (newspaper, magazine, etc) and be sure your link building strategy is based on improve brand awareness not keywords in anchors (let your pages tell the search engines what the pages are about not your anchors). Good luck!

Search Engine Optimization Pro

Please don't forget to "accept" and of course, let me know if you have any questions.




Thanks Dave!!
Having my client check this over real quick and I will accept your answer!!


Once again Dave! Thanks very much. I am trying to inbox you a message but the system seems to be buggy. I will try to contact you via your page!!



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