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The Complete Guide to Google Penalty Recovery

Tripp Hamilton is the Director of Angular’s link removal department, a leading search marketing agency known for white-glove link development services, industry R&D, and their suite of innovative SEO tools such as,, and


Who is the „Penguin“?


„Penguin“ is the Anti-spam Algorithm. At the moment there were 7 updates released. The latest one “Penguin Ever Flux” is considered to be a lighter & faster version.




Why should you care about “Penguin”?


If your website depends on Google, it will probably be affected by the Link Scams – any links influencing Page Rank in Google search results. Here can be a multitude of things: buying/selling links, excessive link exchanges, large-scale article marketing, generated spam.


For example, you are searching for cups, so you can build links with that particular text, but when you get a lot of them with the same anchor phrases, your branded anchor is getting lower. This is dangerous! As you can get caught in the “Penguin Algorithm” and your site will be disavowed by Google. Before 2012, such  methods were standard for SEO world, but the industry has changed significantly and if you ignore the changes, you’ll be left behind!


frustrated man



How to detect a felony?



First of all, keep calm and check your Google Analytics account. If the site announcements fall down to 20-30 rank pages on Google, the site got penalized. Google Search Account delivers the information about the disavowed results. Determine how serious the problem is and keep in mind: it is not the end of the world. There are definitely other even more frightening penalties out there like: ‘your site has been hacked’, ‘the content of your site gets modified or spammed’.


How to resolve the problem: 5 steps


1. Collecting data

Select and download data from such sources as:,,, Google Search Console and others. “Majestic” is one of the biggest info bank. Convert the data to Excel or other readable formats, condense the data, remove duplicates and crawl., or Link Research Tools can be useful here.


2. Analyzing process

Analyze the Links on the subjects of: anchor text, the context of the link, quality, relevance. Tools you will need: Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, and basic knowledge of modern SEO quality guidelines.


3. Request to the searching engine

Important to inform Google about the process – in order to be applied to your own projects and avoid penalties. Send there the reconsideration request: responses from webmasters, ransoms (payment requests), refusal (belligerent responses).


4. Uploading documentation

Upload a disavow file which contains ALL the domains that have NOT removed links. Reconsideration request, better known as an “apology to Google” for spamming their search results. This is a possibility to explain how you just landed there. The best suggestion is to use Google Drive. Upload documentation of link removal outreach, links analyses and any other pertinent documents, spreadsheets. Once you have a reconsideration request drafted, you have to wait for the reply. In 2012 it could take 4-5 weeks, now 2-3 days only.


a happy man


If everything is ok, you will get an answer: “Reconsideration request is approved & the PENALTY IS LIFTED! WOOHOO!” After that, your site is pretty much out of the danger zone.


In case the reconsideration request hasn’t been approved, it means Google has doubts about reconsideration option used as a tricking movement. The documentation should be very correct. Be more strict, when it comes to determining between good vs bad links.


5. Choosing correct words

Be very careful with algorithmic decisions of choosing words! In case of duplicating the same information about similar product on the Internet, your site will be immediately “disavowed” from Google search results.


The new “Penguin Ever Flux” update allows to complete these steps easier and helps to return your site to the right place in a search engine. The recovery process usually takes about a week or two.
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