Negative SEO is a powerful tactic used to de-rank a competitor’s website. This is achieved by utilizing several malpractices related to the optimization process to lower the website ranking of rival businesses or individuals, so as to benefit. This damages the website’s prospects of achieving top search rankings, thereby leading to loss of organic search visibility and ultimately loss of revenue.
Although Negative SEO could happen in various forms potentially capable of reducing the chances of a website achieving higher rankings in the top search results, however, you can also prevent and protect your website from such attacks.
Effective ways to protect your website from Negative SEO
1. Routine Link Audit
Spotting out any malicious activity just in time can only occur as a result of regular auditing. It is also important to inspect link graphs to monitor any abrupt spike or drop, which might be a result of any malicious activities such as link farm spam. Failure to check might lead to a drop in a website’s ranking for the main keywords, thereby resulting in the loss of hundreds of new visits from your potential customers. Therefore, it is important to ensure better backlink health by utilizing link auditing software or by checking manually.
2. Check Website Speed
Another Negative SEO practice is malicious background activities that can cause your website to load sluggishly for no reason. When the design of your website is not faulty but you still experience loading speed, then it is possible is caused by spam which causes a heavy server load. For cases like this, it is effective to utilize crawling software to ascertain the actual problem. When the problem is detected, immediately contact your hosting company or webmaster to discover where the heavy severe load originated and you can then go ahead to block them using robots.txt or htaccess.
3. Scraping Of Content
Website ranking can also be lowered by scrapping its content. This is achieved by copying content from your website and pasting it on another website. The malicious attacker then arrogates that the content originally belongs to them. Coupled with a link fam attack, this kind of content eventually spams your website. However, the main challenge occurs when Google is tricked into seeing the copied content as original and therefore indexes the copied content before yours. Google may then penalize your website and you could lose your ranking.
This problem can be avoided by entering the URL of your content into plagiarism checkers software to check for duplicates on the web. If you discover any website, ensure the website removes the content and if they decline then you should immediately report it to Google.
4. Monitor Keyword Click-Through-Rate(CTR)
Some attackers program bots to specifically target certain keywords. Then, they will click on your ad copy and instantly bounce back to the search engine result page. When such keywords lead to your website, it would bounce away from your website thereby leading to a false increase in your website’s bounce rate. This could have a detrimental impact on your website’s ranking.
However, you can utilize Google Search Console to monitor your Keyword CTR regularly. For cases where you discover any malicious activity, you should immediately contact Google to disavow the attacking links and save your website from such negative SEO practices.
It is better for you to be protected than to suffer from irreversible damage due to negative SEO, therefore it is important to always monitor suspicious changes on your website to detect if you are the target of a negative SEO attack.
Furthermore, if you need help improving your website’s ranking on search engines with Expert SEO help, then look no further. Contact our team of SEO experts at Digital Agency today to help you skyrocket your website to the top of the listing with our SEO services.