Google Panda and Google Penguin updates tumbling web business world upside down. What's left in the dust is the remnants of websites - some are dying; some are simply... dead. Some online business owners just abandon their websites hit by either Panda or Penguin update - or both; some others are working hard to pave the road to recovery - with unknown success rate (maybe around 15-20%? I'm not really sure...)
My websites were hit by either Panda or Penguin at different updates. A couple of my websites was hit last year by Panda 2.0. A major site of mine were hit by Panda 3.7, 3.8 and 3.9 - not mentioning it was hit by Penguin 1.1... the aftermath: I lose 60% income and traffic from that one site.
Just in case you need it - here's a good resource to track Google algorithm updates, including Panda and Penguin.
I was devastated, but problems are there to be solved - as I decided that backlink removal is too resource-intensive.
I remember that when I was starting out back in 2008, I have actually done what's suggested today: Limiting backlinks with keywords as anchor texts, and pursuing natural linking (e.g. using AsepOnde.com or Asep Onde Online Business Blog as the anchor text.)
So, anyhow - after pondering for days, I decided that I will take the grass-root approach of website marketing: So, I decided to leave SEO and focus on the users and common-sense marketing: Getting the words out via buzz marketing using various non-SEO methods: social media marketing, offline marketing, etc. - basically trying to let people know about my web business.
With my blogs, I link out to any websites I want and share resources I think important for my blogs' readers. I no longer afraid of diluting my PageRank power... I no longer think about passing link juice to other sites I myself find useful.
Again, I will focus on my audience, providing value - instead of trying to satisfy the insatiable Google bots and other search engine bots.
So, as you might have known, Google Panda 3.9.1 has confirmed on August 20th. I saw a glimpse of hope as my main site is start gaining traction on Google. Not a significant jump, but it's steadily picking up.
Maybe Google bots acknowledge the changes I've made; maybe it's due to the social media marketing I've done in the past 3 week; nevertheless, it's possible to live happily after Panda and Penguin updates without making a fuss over bad backlinks and over-optimization.
Here's what I do: I used to think that having as many pages as possible on Google's index (and other search engine indexes) is the best thing to do; not anymore - now I only want quality pages indexed by the search engines. So I removed bad posts asking this question "If I were this site visitor, would I be happy reading the content?" If my answer is no, then it's simple - rewrite or remove it.
I turn to social media - especially Facebook, Twitter and StumbleUpon to drive non-search engine traffic to my websites. So far, StumbleUpon send 2-3 times the traffic sent by Facebook. So, I think you might want to explore StumbleUpon more - maybe using StumbleUpon's marketing service? (Facebook marketing sucks, by the way...)
So, how about you? Are your sites were hit and finally recovered from Google Panda or Penguin updates? If so, please share your experience by leaving your comment below!
Image from esoftload.info