Actions for the Website Owner / Webmaster
- Review the Google Webmaster notification and click on 'Learn More' to understand the detail behind the request.
- This is very important as Google changes there position regularly and you need to have the most up to date information.
- Review the links that Google knows about for your website in Google Webmaster Tools.
- Make contact with the Website owners to remove the unnatural links.
- Once all appropriate links are removed, raise a Google reconsideration request.
- You're rankings should return for the specific keyword and it will take a little time (days).
- This assumes you've removed all the unnatural links
Which links are you looking for?Â Take note of the date Google sent the notification and refer to the latest links up to two or three weeks in the past that Google has found.Â Google shows the "found" date of the pattern of unnatural artificial, deceptive or manipulative link beside each link so this will be easy to do.
Just review each incoming link, the site it's coming from and if it is spammy, start the process of making contact with the website owner to have the link(s) removed.Â Be careful, some sites can have Malware or other issues.
Don't be shy, get rid of everything that doesn't look right otherwise you'll be raising multiple reconsideration requests which Google that takes time and will ultimately delay returning your rankings for the keyword(s) concerned.
What is classified as an unnatural link pattern?Â
Usually (but not always) it is identified by looking at the number of links from a single website.Â If the volume of links is high (hundreds of inbound links) that is generally unnatural but there are exceptions to the rule.
If you have 600+ links (say) coming from one site you don't recognise, it is most likely an issue.Â Don't assume this is the case for all websites.Â If you have many links from a website directory, it may well be legitimate.Â Think of yell.com and the number of different categories / locations you could be listed in which would produce hundreds of links.
Please note: If you are using an SEO software package that shows rankings, links and other useful information to you, it will also show you far more than what Google is worried about in terms of inbound links from other websites.Â For this exercise, you can ignore what the SEO tool is listing as external links and initially focus on what you see in Google Webmaster Tools Links page.
Can't make contact with the website owner?
You'll be getting into the realms of disavowing pages or entire domains using Google Webmaster Tools.Â You'll need to keep track of all the domains and page addresses you want disavowed in a file and uploaded it to Google each time you find new domains or pages.Â This submission takes time to kick in so be patient.Â We'll cover Disavowing domains and pages in an upcoming blog post.