Since Google’s release of the zoo animals, websites have been getting hit with penalties and grasping at straws for ways to recover their rankings. So you got hit, it’s time to stop panicking, pick up the pieces and be proactive!


Understand, Analyze, Recover

The first step to recovering your website rankings, is to understand why you were penalized. More links aren’t always the answer; many people are getting nailed due to over-optimization and unnatural link profiles. Take a look at your link profile; look closely at your inbound and outbound links. Use tools like Open Site Explorer or Majestic SEO to delve into your link profile.

Check out your anchor text distribution, if the inbound links to your site is inundated with exact match anchor text, yeah, you may be in trouble. Using exact match anchor text for your big keywords for every link is now a thing of the past and it’s time to update your anchor text techniques. After you analyze your links, figure out your plan of attack. If some links are extremely detrimental to your website, you should consider a campaign to remove the links, which requires contacting webmasters and asking them to remove the link. This can be time consuming and tedious. To link build moving forward you should focus on other anchor text strategies.


Get with the times!

I’m sure you have heard it everywhere, but vary your anchor text! There is nothing wrong with having exact match anchor text, however it should not make up bulk of your link profile. Start building links using the following variety:

1. Naked URLs

Don’t be afraid to go naked! Naked URLs symbolize the most natural of linking. These links are supposed to make up the larger part of a link profile and if they do, this tells Google that your site is legit. So don’t be afraid strip your website down to its birthday suit and link to your homepage URL.

2. “Other” Anchor Text – “click here”

Now I use the term “other” loosely. This doesn’t mean insert whatever you want as your anchor text. You have probably noticed that sometimes, say in a social profile, when you put the URL to your homepage the site will display your link as “homepage”, “click here” or “visit this site”. Don’t freak out and get discouraged that the website won’t let you display the URL, this “other” anchor text is natural. Google knows that you should have some of those variations in your inbound links.

3. Brand Name – “Web Talent Marketing” “web talent marketing” “Web Talent

You should always, always, always rank for your brand name. Simple as that. If you are not using your brand name as anchor text and it doesn’t appear in your inbound links, you are setting yourself up for failure. So link to your brand name and vary your brand name a bit, use upper and lower case and use partial brand names.

4. Brand and Keyword – “Web Talent Internet Marketing Company”

Mix and match your brand name with relevant keywords. This strategy includes the best of both worlds, you incorporate your brand name and get to use some exact match keywords.


Variety is the Spice of Life

If the majority of your inbound links are not comprised of these 4 types of anchor text, your website is waving a big red flag at Google. Not everyone links to your site the same way and search engines are painfully aware of this. So analyze your links, mix up your anchor text, and start your road to recovery!