The growing threat of negative SEO

Blog | 18 Mar, 2015

Black hat negative SEO attacks continue to be challenged, as Jellyfish lead by example in driving awareness of spotting the signs of one, and pathing a quick road to recovery.

Josh Patterson, our Senior SEO Manager, wrote an article for the Smart Business blog about the growing threat of negative SEO and how businesses can monitor and address these threats. 

Josh aptly states "Negative SEO attacks occur when a site is effectively targeted by a hostile attack, deliberately creating low quality and toxic links to decrease the site’s performance in organic listings."

Click here for the full article:

Negative SEO article in Smart Business

He goes on to reference a recent Gartner survey, "The world is evolving and the ways brands engage their constituents online are changing... the Gartner survey revealed spending on digital marketing averaged one-quarter of the marketing budget in 2014. It also highlighted that among 51 percent of companies that plan to increase their digital marketing budget in 2015, the average increase will be 17 percent."

Concluding; "Some of the most prevalent investments in digital marketing will be protection from cyber-attacks, specifically negative SEO attacks."

CognitiveSEO share Jellyfish's story

This is not the only coverage on the topic Jellyfish has had of late. One of our favoured tools for SEO management, CognitiveSEO, recently covered our case study of how our Jellyfish UK site was the victim of one of these attacks.

Click here to read the full ‘How a Famous SEO Agency Got Nuked by a Negative SEO Attack & Their Recovery Story’ article.

It shows how we dipped from continuous growth: 

Jellyfish continuous SEO ranking rise

To a sudden drop in rankings:

Jellyfish negative SEO attack ranking drop

Jellyfish Penalty Checker

If you want a free tool to track your website visibility the Jellyfish Penalty Checker has been created precisely for monitoring SEO performance. For example, we used it here to look at the timing of key algorithm updates against our performance and noticed the dip was the same time as the Penguin 3.0 update (October 17th 2014). 

Jellyfish Penalty Checker

Negative SEO attacks can’t be taken seriously enough for online businesses or businesses that rely on their website to do business.

The message to webmasters and marketers? Monitor your backlink profile as a standard part of any digital marketing strategy.

Or contact us should you want assistance.

Josh’s article in Smart Business finished on three predictions that are likely to happen through collaboration between Google and webmasters:

Google will devise better means of detecting and preventing against SEO attacks, therefore protecting healthy sites against attacks.

With social signals playing an increasing role within website ranking/performance, Google will begin devising tighter means of detecting unnatural/manipulated social engagement in a similar way that it did with backlinks after introducing Penguin.

Webmasters will need to build-in to their monthly SEO activity an element of ongoing backlink monitoring and health-checking to ensure that negative SEO attacks are picked up quickly and can be quickly remedied. This will involve iterative updates of disavow files and manual link removal processes.

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