Are you suffering from the Google Sandbox, the -30 penalty, the -950 penalty, too many reciprical link partners, an anchor text or link spam related penalty, duplicate content issues, or the latest algorithm, search index, or quality update? It may not be what you think. DigitalGhost recently described Google's most common SEO related penalty:
Let me tell you about the most common penalty Google uses.
It doesn't have a catchy name, and people generally refuse to talk about it because this particular penalty requires taking responsibility. It's much easier to blame the +-30 penalty, the Sandbox or the new 950 penalty than it is to accept that you've been nailed with the most common penalty of all. What is it you ask?
It's the My Site Sucks Ass And Google Just Figured It Out penalty.
I have a theory that for most people it is easier to create something worth marketing than it is to push something of no value. And that is probably one of the hardest things to get around as an SEO, because SEO can make it seem addictive that we can influence markets without creating real value, but the people who make growing income each and every month are generally those who have at least one real site of real value. Sure you can use SEO to boost it, but it works best if the SEO is done in conjunction with other marketing and real market integration.
It sorta ties in with that whole how easy is it to clone your business concept I recently mentioned. If what you are doing is easy to clone then why not think of a way to add value and make it harder to clone. Sometimes that added value can be just slapping on a few marketing hooks, other times it might be listening to the needs of the market, or commoditizing the business models of competitors.
Recently a friend of mine launched a site and I got them to the top 20 using the general SEO techniques I can apply to any site, but I had them read that clone post and they told me brilliant ideas they could do to add value to their market by commoditizing people who do not even realize they are in the same market. If your marketing strategy is just SEO eventually you lose out when an SEO aware competitor cares about their market and/or uses other marketing techniques.
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