Google’s last ‘Penguin’ update has laid down the hammer on many websites; even the major players within a niche have found their traffic to take a dip.

There’s no going back to the “good old days” so there’s only moving forward; if you’ve been affected by the Penguin update than you’ll want to implement a few of these tweaks to get back on top again.

  • Perform a Site Audit. Take a look through your website and find the “bad pages” that may be harming your search ranking; either remove or update these pages. Likewise, dig through your link profile and try to find a common theme to why you may have been hit. Start with what you’ve done before making drastic changes to an entire website.
  • De-Optimize. Scale back on your search engine optimization. Don’t stuff as many keywords into your page title, headers, and URL as humanly possible; try to create the body content as organic as you can without setting “points” to inject keywords.
  • Update (Or Remove) Internal Links. Go back through and update or remove links pointing outward that are either dead or aren’t entirely relevant to your website (such as sponsored links). Consider your own usage for internal linking to web pages; refrain from over doing it when it comes to linking around but keep it dynamic.
  • Filter Out Some External Links. Penguin hit hard for sites that rely on mass link building, blogrolls, blog networks, directories, and other web properties. Perhaps it’s time to go back into these accounts and remove the links from the “bad neighborhoods”.
  • No More ‘Doorway’ Pages. Get out of the aggressive mindset on building “doorway” pages which are made for the sole function of high rankings and sales. Try to update these pages so they have more to say than “buy me” or simply remove them and find other ways to drive sales through organic methods or through an eCommerce platform.
  • Less Search Engine Play, More User Focus. Tone down your commitment for hardcore SEO and work on a better user experience (more interaction, simple navigation, networking, and brand building). Build a website people want to browse than what’s simply served to them as the first result; keep them on your pages longer by giving them a worthwhile experience.
  • Work on Better, Relevant Content. Just because you have a publishing platform and a thirst for writing whatever pops into your mind doesn’t mean you should. Try to scale back the content to its ‘meatier’ and far more relevant to your readers. Don’t cut corners by using article spinning software or solely relying on outsourced help; create definitive content pieces on your topic.

Were you hit by the Penguin update? What are you doing for damage control?