• JakubHanke

    Well, why not just buy a different domain and 301′s it?

  • http://www.kitchencabinetkings.com/ Andrew Stolpe

    This will temporarily work and then pass the penalty to the new domain.

  • Pat Grady

    I’m pretty sure Jakub was joking. :-) I’ve seen this “thinking” before.

  • ashear

    Great write up! It’s a hard choice to make, however if a domain has had a history of abusive spam. It’s going to be a hard case to get it released, especially as the emotions of the protective spam team will come into play. No one likes their hard work messed with, developers are also human beings with emotions. Sometimes its hard for us to see that.

  • Sha Menz

    “I will say, however, that having a manual penalty removed after one
    attempt, regardless of the amount of work put in, is exceedingly rare.”

    I’m afraid I would have to disagree slightly there Jon. If you follow the correct process without deviation (which does involve considerable work) lifting a penalty on the first attempt can be a familiar occurrence. The real trick I think, is in convincing a client to jump off of the emotional roller coaster and trust in the process so you can do what needs to be done

  • beulah752

    what Dawn responded I’m dazzled that a person can profit $6441 in four weeks on the computer. did you see this web page w­w­w.K­E­P­2.c­o­m

  • Antti Nylund

    If toxic links have not turned your home page to a waste land you might consider republishing pages with most toxic content and make sure your 404 page serves visitors the lost content with ease. This in the case that captain is chained to the mast…

  • http://www.swayamdas.com/ Swayam Das

    If the domain is related to a Brand then it’s not a good idea to bunk the domain and go for a new one just because Google hates it. If it’s non-branded there is a way as you mentioned.

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com/ Nick Stamoulis

    I’ve had to have this discussion with site owners as well—are you willing to put in the work and wait and hope that Google lifts the penalty? Can you afford to wait that long? If it’s an algorithmic penalty you have to wait until at least the next update to see if you’ve done everything write. Sometimes as site is worth saving but that’s a bigger business decision than just looking at SEO.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    So true ashear! This is the most overlooked aspect of dealing with penalized sites – the emotional attachments site owners form. Websites require a lot of work, and after years of this it’s hard to think objectively and make logical conclusions. We’re all only human after all.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    I’m glad you’ve had good experiences Sha. Always happy to hear someone having a positive interaction with Google.

    With recent changes Google’s made (actually reporting the exact penalty in webmaster tools) I hope to see more of this in the future. ‘The emotional roller coaster’ – apt words.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    Hey Swayam, thanks for pointing that out. I would agree that if your domain is directly tied to your brand then that definitely plays into the factors to examine.

    However, you can always make a new domain that still ties into the brand. For example, my company Page One Power, we have the domain pageonepower.com. If we needed to move domains, for whatever reason, there’s other options still. Page1power.com, for example. Not ideal, but still doable.

    However, as you’ve said, if your domain is well known and associated directly with your brand you should think twice before moving.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    Absolutely Nick. Thanks for your comment. I think the importance of being upfront and honest about the amount of work can’t be overstated. Because, as you said, this goes beyond SEO and is truly a business decision. Oftentimes we’re talking about someone’s livelihood.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    Thanks for your comment.

    You’re right, I did focus pretty heavily on links since that’s primarily what I specialize in.

    However, as Nick said below often times the question of what to do about a penalty goes beyond an SEO decision – it becomes a business decision. And often times businesses don’t have time to wait and see about recovery.

    But again, the age of the domain (not to mention the overall investment) is definitely something that should be considered before making any decision.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    Great story! I love seeing a little humor brought into the SEO world – I think we all need it from time to time.

  • Charles Floate

    I’m all for throwing away something that’s unfixable but if you can remove the penalty, then I’d sink my teeth into that 10 year old business domain with a branded authority.
    Not to mention businesses IRL marketing with the likes of business cards, flyers, adverts etc.. that are all based around that old domain, it can be more expensive to not recover from the penalty.

  • http://pageonepower.com/ Jon Ball

    Hey Charles,

    I’d absolutely agree – a lot of times I see websites that are still receiving traffic even when nuked out of the SERPs for these reasons. Definitely one of the factors I consider, along with overall investment and likelihood of recovery.

  • Charles Floate

    Yeh, Google SERP traffic makes up 40% of my blogs traffic.. Majority comes from referrals (35%) then social ^.^
    I’d prefer a sticky thread on a big forum in my niche over ranking #1 for the KW related to it any day, would get more traffic, build brand reputation and have a community backing :)

  • Charles Floate

    Yeh, Google SERP traffic makes up 40% of my blogs traffic.. Majority comes from referrals (35%) then social ^.^
    I’d prefer a sticky thread on a big forum in my niche over ranking #1 for the KW related to it any day, would get more traffic, build brand reputation and have a community backing :)

  • Trisha Agarwal

    Great article. I am working very hard to recover from all of these cute little beasts! I had a lot of duplicate issues due to my content 2.0 pages, which I tackled too late to feel any benefits from the July 15th update. I am quite curious about what you mean by unnatural links? Do you mean linking to your own internal pages or to other sites? Or both? I have some ‘resource pages’ that have a very small list of sites on them. Should I dump those? And what can you do about exact match anchor texts that already exist? my blog was hit by Panda on 24th August 2013