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5 Sites That Beat Penguin 3 - Details On Age, Content & Link Strategies For Each & My Tips

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by MatthewWoodward, Oct 24, 2014.

  1. MatthewWoodward

    MatthewWoodward Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Hey,

    I've seen a lot posted about Penguin 3 the past week and I wanted to share the details of 5 sites that either survived or jumped up during the update.

    I will tell you as much as I can about the sites along with supporting screenshots of Analytics/RankTracker where possible.

    Site 1 ? IT Software

    This site is for a big international IT software company. This is a particularly strange example because the site has took a hit across some lower traffic terms while high traffic target terms have jumped.
    At this stage it is hard to say if this is directly related to Penguin but it certainly correlates with the update.

    Site 1 Details

    Here are all of the dirty details of the site-


    • Age Of Site: Created Feb 2002 (12 years old) ? no drops
    • # Indexed Pages: 172,000
    • Hosting: Dedicated
    • Whois Protection: No
    • Using Google WMT: Yes
    • Using Google Analytics: Yes
    • Content Added: Weekly
    • Type Of Content: Sales & info pages for products & regular blog posts
    • Link Building Strategy: White hat out reach & PR


    Site 1 Ranking

    Here is a screenshot of the rankings-

    [​IMG]

    Site 1 Traffic


    Here you can see how the update affected traffic-

    [​IMG]


    Site 2 ? Kids Clothing & Toys E-Commerce

    This is a unique site that sells a range of clothing & toys for children online. Looking at rankings you can see they have had great increases during the Penguin 3 update with traffic growing steadily.

    Interestingly they made the swap to HTTPS 2 weeks ago which results in a fluctuation in the number of indexed pages as Google replaces the HTTP version with the HTTPS version of the site.

    Site 2 Details

    Here are all of the dirty details of the site-


    • Age Of Site: Created 1994, acquired by current company in 2013
    • # Indexed Pages: 652,000
    • Hosting: Dedicated
    • Whois Protection: No
    • Using Google WMT: Yes
    • Using Google Analytics: Yes
    • Content Added: Daily
    • Type Of Content: New products with unique content are added daily along with the occasional blog post
    • Link Building Strategy: White hat out reach & PR bolstered by a few exclusive private blog networks


    Site 2 Ranking


    Here is a screenshot of the rankings-

    [​IMG]

    Site 2 Traffic


    Here you can see how the update affected traffic-

    [​IMG]


    Site 3 ? Dieting/Nutrition


    This site focuses on dieting and nutrition which has quickly dominated the entire niche. As the site has been ranked with private blog networks it has delivered consistently good quality content seeing over 400,000 Facebook fans which in turn earns a lot of natural links.

    It has remained steady since April and throughout the Penguin 3 update ranking for some big terms including 27100, 90500, 110000 & 555000 monthly volume keywords.

    Previously the site owner had been wiped out by Penguin and started this site while 301′ing the old Penguin penalised site to this new one.

    Site 3 Details

    Here are all of the dirty details of the site-


    • Age Of Site: October 2013
    • # Indexed Pages: 2,100
    • Hosting: Shared
    • Whois Protection: Yes
    • Using Google WMT: No
    • Using Google Analytics: No
    • Content Added: Weekly
    • Type Of Content: Recipes & diet information
    • Link Building Strategy: Pure private blog network strategy but now earns tons of natural links due to niche dominance


    Site 3 Ranking

    Here is a screenshot of the rankings-

    [​IMG]


    Site 4 ? Pet Products


    This is an Australian site with a spammy link history and got hit with Penguin previously.

    It is an exact match .com.au domain and solely targets Australian SERPs.

    Site 4 Details

    Here are all of the dirty details of the site-


    • Age Of Site: Created 2009, acquired by current owner in 2012
    • # Indexed Pages: 2,840
    • Hosting: Dedicated
    • Whois Protection: No
    • Using Google WMT: Yes
    • Using Google Analytics: Yes
    • Content Added: Rarely
    • Type Of Content: Product pages with unique content, no blog or content marketing
    • Link Building Strategy: Pure private blog network


    Site 4 Ranking

    Here is a screenshot of the rankings for the Penguin 3 update-

    [​IMG]

    And here you can see a longer term look at the rankings-

    [​IMG]

    Site 4 SEMRush

    Unfortunately I don?t have the long long term data available but this screenshot from SEMRush shows their organic search growth since 2011 and shows when they hit with a previous Penguin update in October 2013.

    [​IMG]


    Site 5 ? Playground Manufacturer


    This company manufactures and sells children?s playgrounds and have been working with them since June.

    When they first started they had absolutely zero search visibility.

    Site 5 Details

    Here are all of the dirty details of the site-


    • Age Of Site: Created 1998, acquired by current owner in 2011
    • # Indexed Pages: 505
    • Hosting: Dedicated
    • Whois Protection: No
    • Using Google WMT: Yes
    • Using Google Analytics: Yes
    • Content Added: Rarely
    • Type Of Content: Product & info pages about the business with a few blog posts
    • Link Building Strategy: Pure private blog network with a couple of 301′s

    Site 5 Ranking


    Here is a screenshot of the rankings-

    [​IMG]

    Site 5 Traffic


    Here you can see how the update affected traffic-

    [​IMG]

    So What Has Changed With Penguin 3?


    Well not a lot really ? this is just a data refresh and because of that we already know what doesn?t work and what does.

    Many people have evolved their link building tactics since the last Penguin update by using much more varied anchor texts surrounded by relevant content, while others haven?t.

    So here is a guide of what you should be avoiding and what is working as of now based on my own sites/knowledge-

    Things To Avoid


    1. Irrelevant spammy links
    2. Over optimised anchor text
    3. Unnatural spikes in link velocity
    4. Single links ? eg no surrounding content just the link


    Things That Work


    1. Truly private blog/site networks built right (there is a clue in the wording)
    2. Relevant links with relevant content
    3. Spun content
    4. Mixing up your anchor texts & using branded/generic terms
    5. Traditional outreach, broken link building, PR (not press releases)
    6. Strong social followings/engagement


    I also think you should spend some time thinking about Scrittys predications ? bear in mind they are nothing more than opinion, but that is opinion rooted with years of hands on experience.

    Always think to the future with your link building. Experienced SEO?s that have ridden the waves of the past few years have great insights on what could come next and are worth you spare thoughts.

    Even so ? despite all of the updates my link building still lives and dies by 2 simple rules.

    2 Simple Link Building Rules

    I have 2 simple link building rules one is defining the holy grail of links as a relevant link surrounded by relevant content from an authoritative domain.

    You can not get a better quality link than that and that is exactly the type of link we can create with truly private blog/site networks and have full control of. Nothing has changed in that regard.

    The other link building rule I live by is simply ?If it?s good enough to be in Google?s index, it?s good enough to link to my site?.

    Spun content is still indexing well for me and as such it is good enough to point to my sites. The same is true if a domain is indexed in Google, a link from that domain is good enough for my site as long as its surrounded by relevant content with a relevant link.

    This has remained true throughout all of the updates and if you combine the simplistic approach of both you end up with a diverse profile in terms of relevancy and authority.

    That's my 2 cents anyway!
     
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  2. Money Over Morals

    Money Over Morals BANNED BANNED

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    Very good data Matthew - very well explained as well and a help for us all.
     
  3. tranza

    tranza Power Member

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    So based on your opinion, any link is good as long as it has related content in it?. You dont care about site authority and its been spammed by GSA SER users?
     
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  4. Lampara

    Lampara Senior Member

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    bookmarked..

    my sites got hit by this update.. i need to get more HR PR links and Authority Links.. dang this is going to be expensive..

    tools - GSA SER + nohandseo
     
  5. zubidoo

    zubidoo Regular Member

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    great post Matthew. I read your blog all the time. :) I wanted to share a link I someone else posted on another thread

    http://www.micrositemasters.com/blo...3-things-you-need-to-know-to-remain-relevant/

    the sites that were hit hard like mine were hit not because of too many bad links, but because of not enough good links. The link juice of bad links were devalued and caused rankings to plummet. Only way to pull out of this will be to get some good pbn links and high quality relevant links.
     
  6. andrewabd

    andrewabd Registered Member

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    Great post! would you please provide more information regarding the private blog network you are using, like:
    1- How many PBN links on average are pointing to those domains
    2- What type of anchor text your are using from PBN (EM, click here, www.site)
    3- Are the link homepage, contextual, articles, blog roll
    4- How many outbound links to other websites each blog in your PBN has
    5- What type of content there is on the PBN, same site as was before dropping, new content

    I want also people to note that you are using legitimate websites in your examples which can normally take more spam than new websites built by affiliate or SEOs so people should be more careful when they build links to money sites built by affiliates or SEOs just to rank and cash.
     
  7. Nut-Nights

    Nut-Nights Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Nice stuff OP :)
     
  8. DavidM19

    DavidM19 Junior Member

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    Great post, thanks for the information!

    I have 2 sites all ranking with outreach blog posts, they all increased in rankings after the update, I'm seeing the exact same thing.
     
  9. sbndnb

    sbndnb Regular Member

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    Great case study matthew, thanks for sharing!
     
  10. MatthewWoodward

    MatthewWoodward Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    No worrys hope it helps some way or another







    And it gets indexed in Google. But yes that is one of the simple rules I follow. Obviously you need some nice authoritative links in your profile to keep things mixed though.





    What is your anchor text break down like?



    Sounds like the perfect platform to perform a nice test with!


    It's early days yet but a site that got hit was 301'd to a new domain at the start of the week and is starting to see 1st page ranks return as of yesterday. Will post an update on the blog once its settled.





    1) That is irrelevant and very niche specific, eg green sticky notes needs a lot less to rank than car insurance.
    2) a mix of generic, anchor and branded leaning on the generic/branding side
    3) The sites aren't just 'blogs' think of it as a private site network rather than blog network
    4) No idea, but there are a lot lot lot more contextual links to other sites than any other. The outbound link profiles are varied and relevant.
    5) This gets mixed up/randomized





    Nice job with the increases :)
     
  11. Nut-Nights

    Nut-Nights Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    OP your domain got so many neg seo links and still you are getting ton of traffic How ?
     
  12. pradep89

    pradep89 Power Member

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    well thanks for sharing ... i saw some site which is using some sape kinds of links. and this site on first page...
     
  13. mickyfu

    mickyfu Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Well done Matthew, the first post I have read of yours and you resisted putting a link back to your blog.
     
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  14. SinfulPromotions

    SinfulPromotions BANNED BANNED

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    Matthew, this an excellent post with KICK ASS data! PBN's are in!
     
  15. Adrian112

    Adrian112 Supreme Member Premium Member

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    Today few sites of mine dropped alot in traffic, is is possible that update hitted them today?
     
  16. SEO_Alchemy

    SEO_Alchemy Senior Member

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    Great Post Mathew... always enjoy reading your insights.

    On a side note, all those sites have at least several hundred (some several thousand) indexed pages, a few are many years old..... maybe that has a little something to do why they were not hit, and many thin affiliate only domains bit the dust :)

    It's not all links IMO
     
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  17. SkyrocketSEO

    SkyrocketSEO Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Was this another guest blog post by your very good friend Charles Floate (5 years working as SEO expert) or was it written by some other tool ?
     
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  18. ThopHayt

    ThopHayt Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    This is what the black hat community reminds me of right now with regards to Penguin:

    http://www.jainworld.com/literature/story25.htm


    Nobody here knows the whole picture. Even guys with 1,000 site networks are looking at a giant through a pin hole. Any conclusions drawn from such is likely to be wildly off.
     
  19. BreaknBrix

    BreaknBrix Power Member

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    STFU you tool. That shit has nothing to do with the OP and makes you sound like a jealous, bitter, hater. You ever see what families have to go through when their sons/brothers/friends are arrested for pedophile charges? It's this exact type of harassment meanwhile 99% of them have/had no idea wtf was going on.

    I was gonna thank this comment till I realized that Woodward has posted more useful content in the last year than you will ever post in your life.
     
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  20. SkyrocketSEO

    SkyrocketSEO Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Calm down dingleberry. Any SEO clown promoting Goddess of SEO on their blogs/podcasts/whatnot does not deserve my sympathy. I don't care if Goddess was arrested for being a pedo, as they say, he is innocent until proven.
    But it was proven, long time ago, that the guy is scammer, tool, hater, liar...so when someone decides to give that guy so much space on his blog...what to say?
     
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