Niche Site Update #5 – When Google Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade!

by Tory McBroom · 1 comment

lemonsIf you’re into the whole SEO thing and frequent blogs/forums etc. then you’ve probably heard of the penguin update…

And you’re probably sick of hearing about it – or more so the speculation and mass hysteria.

So, for me personally, I plan on looking past the speculation and clearing the waters the only way I know how…

Through testing on my personal sites!

So, what does this have to do with my niche site?  Well, this particular site was kicked square in the nuts by the penguin.

Now, where most people would give up or cry about how evil Google is, I plan on taking the lemons Google gave us and making lemonade!

A few things:


I have a mixed bag of sites – some affected negatively and some actually gained ground.

Two of my sites I created at the same time and have the exact same backlinking portfolio, meaning I only used one service for both of these sites, yet one gained ground while the other fell off the map on the exact same day – April 24th.

Because of this, I plan on focusing on on-page factors first.  There are a few glaring differences between the two sites, especially when it comes to content, outbound links, etc.

Secondly, I plan on creating a more “chaotic” backlink portfolio to my affected sites.  By this I mean varying anchor text and so on.  Google love chaos, and subsequently penalize sites by identifying certain patterns  that look “unnatural”, so I plan on feeding the penguin what it wants.

There are too many factors to decisively tell what will be responsible if/when I’m able to bring my affected sites back, but it may help identify what has a better chance of working.

Am I Mad I Had A Few Sites Affected?

Yes and no.  It’s all part of the game so you must brace yourself for it and prepare for doomsday!

And don’t let people fool ya into saying this is why you must go white hat!  There are plenty of examples I’ve personally seen of sites that aren’t over-optimized (following conventional wisdom I guess) AND had never built a link to their site at all – ever – and they were still affected.

Plus, with this particular niche site I created, and actually ALL of my sites, I create VALUE!  I don’t make small niche sites with one page and slap up Adsense.  I create real value driven sites that aim to help people.  And the only reason I may be slightly upset is that the sites that replaced mine on the first page are laughable in most cases.

Fighting web spam my ass.  Increasing the likelihood of people using Adwords? More likely the case. Remember, Google is a for-profit business.

Moving Forward

I plan on using my aforementioned tests results and applying what works to this niche site to see if it helps.  It still receives longtail traffic (which convert better anyways), and is still making money.

If you have personally used a technique that helped get your sites rankings back please share in the comments or email me and I will test it out on my site. 

More importantly, I plan on building up traffic through various other sources for this site, thus cutting Google out of the equation.  I recently added a forum to help build a “community” and give people a reason to come back.  I created a YouTube page and plan on adding multiple videos and building up that subscriber base, as well as adding an email list.

These are just a few things I already do with my authority sites, but thought I should quit putting it off for this niche site.

Time to make that lemonade!