My website has been penalized by Google before, and with the new Panda 4.0 update, I’m doing my best to stay positive on what’s going to happen next. I have always been focused on quality content, and I’m building a community of like-minded people.
The really hard part, is not writing the content. I have been writing about tools I am using, like Sanebox (the tool I’m using to filter my email), and I have written reviews about books I’ve been reading. I find it fairly easy to discover content to write about, and since I’m using the Pomodoro technique, writing all my blog posts in batches, during the weekend, I do have control of what I publish and how often I publish.
The really hard part is the technical stuff. By technical, I’m referring to what matters to the search engines, and the errors that keeps messing up my site. The errors that no human will notice. I’m focusing on writing, and if it looks like my website is up and running fine, I just keep writing and I’m happy. After my website got hit by Google, the last time, I have been more aware of why it received a penalty, and what I can do to prevent it.
Broken links is an issue. The more links I’ve been adding during the years of blogging, mostly external links, the more broken links I’ve got. I was naive; I never thought that it could be a problem. The same goes for links in the comments section. I started out with a smile, everytime I received a comment. Some of the comments I received was clearly spammy, but I was still smiling, thinking that a new reader just discovered my site.
Again, I was naive, thinking that all engagement was good. To me, broken links is not just links that aren’t working anymore. To me, broken links, means bad links. Links that’ll end up hurting my site.
I don’t want my readers to end up at a place I wouldn’t want to be. That’s why I’ve been removing links from the comments, and that’s why I’ve been testing various tools to find all the broken links on my site.
I understand Google
I’ve been thinking about why I received a penalty from Google, and I have to admit that I still don’t understand why. I know Google is a huge business, and that it might be too much to ask for an explanation, but I’ve been trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. The only thing I’ve discovered are all the broken links on my site.
I understand why Google is hurting sites with broken links. They want the best for their customers. Like I said, I don’t want my readers to end up at a “bad” place, and I don’t want my readers to spend time clicking on links that doesn’t work.
Think about it; what we’re actually doing is turning friends into buyers. We’re a trusted source, and by adding a link to our site, we’re referring our readers to visit the website. So, we need to make sure that we’re adding the “right” links to our site.
Turn it into a habit
I’ve started to visit all the links from people who are commenting on my site. I don’t trust the name anymore. I’m making a visit just to make sure that the site is good enough for my readers. I’m doing this every single day. I’m doing it first thing in the morning, and it’s the last thing I’m doing before I go to bed.
I’ve turned it into a habit. I don’t need to use Full, my favorite iPhone app, because I’m doing it without thinking about it. It’s just part of what I do every single day.