Did you Trigger a Google Penalty? Don't Wait it Out!
 by Casey Markee

Did you Trigger a Google Penalty? Don't Wait it Out!

  • We got one of the "dreaded" unnatural link warnings last week in our Tools account. My supervisor wants us to wait the penalty out and thinks it will expire quickly, (in 30 days). Is this true? Should we submit a reconsideration request anyway?

Answer: As we covered last month in our May SES Google Updates, Google has stepped up their issuance of unnatural link warnings to Google Webmaster Tools accounts in 2012. By most estimates, the total number of notices sent out so far to affected site owners is somewhere between 700,000 and 1 million.

Google Unnatural Links Penalty Graphic

As with your notice, and all notices for that matter, this is a personal heads-up from Google that "shady" linking practices have been identified in your backlink profile AND that manual action has been taken against your site by the Google Webspam team. Per the notice, until you remove the "unnatural links" (those that appear to be used solely to manipulate PageRank or qualify as a link scheme) and your site again meets Google quality guidelines, a ranking suppression penalty will remain in place.

To answer your question, waiting out a penalty is NEVER a recommended best practice and we'd have to strongly disagree with your supervisor that the penalty will expire quickly, certainly not in 30 days. Although these types of manual penalties will expire eventually, it won't be quickly. It could be six months, a year, or even more. Can your business really survive suffering under a suppression penalty for this long?

A recent Google Webmasters Help Forum