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Question about manual penalties

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by dandee0014, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. dandee0014

    dandee0014 Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
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    Quick question for everyone.

    A big, well known site with original content was slapped with the "unnatural links" penalty back in March. There are hundreds of thousands of natural links pointing to this site but it took some digging to uncover what most likely caused this. They have a "profiles" section that allows site members to set up their own profiles. Unfortunately, thousands of spammy profiles (having nothing to do with the site's niche) were created on the site and then these users built keyword-focused links back to these pages (i.e. car insurance, payday loans, etc.) through Scrapebox, Xrumer blasts, etc.

    The site took the profile pages down, but the links still point back to the overall domain and it seems like it would be nearly impossible to have these removed. An explanation was given to Google through a reinstatement request, and they still rejected it.

    They really don't know what to do at this point, but they've lost a ton of valuable traffic due to the penalty and they're wondering whether relaunching the site with a new domain and then doing a 301 redirect (or something similar) from the old to the new could get them out of this sandbox.

    Any ideas about this, or other courses of action they may be better off taking? Thanks a lot for any advice here.