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Search Engine Optimzation can have a negative impact

SEO – Search Engine Optimzation can have a negative impact if done incorrectly. 

I’d like to discuss how ugly excessive patterns and machine like behavior can thwart your efforts to claim long term top rankings on Google and the other search engines. Patterns, Repetition and Footprints May Cause Penalties.

It’s important I share details with you about my opinion on how Google and the other search engines think so we can discuss how we can achieve greater success by anticipating how they will look at what we do.

I’ll make some suggestions that should help get you to the top and keep you there for a long time.

OK, let’s discuss patterns, repetition and footprints.

I have a question for you.

Do your site building techniques reveal obnoxious patterns, excessive repetition or boilerplate footprints???

While it’s great to build lots of real content web sites with tons of relevant keywords on your web pages, it’s also very important that we are aware that there are filters and formulas that look for what Google and the other search engines may deem as un-natural spam-like behavior.

We need to be aware that if we aren’t careful to avoid repetitive spam-like patterns, that we may get penalized.

The penalty could be a slap on the wrist, or in severe cases could be much worse. Multiple vilations will increase the odds your page won’t be able to rise to the top.

Our goal as web publishers should be to build natural real content web sites that have real value for the visitors. If we do this and build our sites so they have value and promote them the right way, we will be rewarded with many top rankings and the traffic will follow!

If we cut corners and act like a robot – well – it may be more challenging to sustain the top rankings for a long time. Sure, we get to the top initially but when tey discover the patterns and see the violations stack up – they’ll knock us down off the front page.

You see often, in the rush to claim the big prize, beginners will cut corners and reveal patterns that can get web pages penalized. We need to be aware of the common pitfalls of massive site building endeavors and prevent the penalties when possible!

Now please DO NOT PANIC! This does NOT happen in MOST CASES – but it does happen often enough to be aware of it!

99 times out of 100 when I analyze an Article Underground member’s web site that has declined in traffic and rankings, I will often find obvious patterns, repetition or footprints that Google and the other search engines can spot a mile away.

Usually problems are caused by a combination of on-page and off-page factors.

ON-PAGE: what they see on our pages
OFF-PAGE: what they see on the pages with links pointing at our URL

ON-PAGE errors could include a number of things such as employing abused overused templates and/or cookie cutter mass automation techniques on the site itself.

Sometimes sites that use PLR articles from other sources than Article Underground will use complete ENTIRE FOLDERS of articles on a topic, or even publish pre-made Adsense sites with ZERO modifications. If other people are using the SAME EXACT FOLDERS of articles or complete premade sites, Google will notice it and may penalize you.

Also it may be the look and feel of the pages – maybe there are too many spammy looking links in the footer – lowercase link text or page titles – excessive repetition of keyword phrases – it could be any of a number of things that Google and the other search engines associate with spam-like behavior.

Article Underground members do NOT get their articles NEATLY pre-categorized in folders – it forces us to build diverse real content sites that are much more unique and do not look like cookie-cutter “made for adsense” spam. And those themed cookie-cutter templates from some of the other membership sites don’t help either – especially if the templates have footprints left un-modified. Some templates may even already include articles with templates in the body or as pre-made sites.

Be creative and build your own sites – don’t re-use the same crap pre-made sites as others will be doing. Do your own thing and rise to the top. Avoid footprints and patterns by building unique sites with diverse content.

Pre-made cookie-cutter sites do not make long term money – all it takes is for Google and the other search engines to identify the footprint on a couple of identical sites and then all similar sites may get penalized.

OFF-PAGE factors that sometimes will cause penalties include links coming from the same places in excess – i.e. massive numbers of links are NOT diverse in where they come from. Also, very often I find text links that have NO VARIETY – they use the same exact link text all of the time in each link and that is a dead giveaway something fishy is going on.

The key is to employ VARIETY and DIVERSITY.

Break up the patterns – mix things up! Don’t act like a machine or a robot!

Article Underground members have a huge advantage because they have MANY great places to get links from. There are 33 AU article announcements blogs (and growing) and over 80 member contributed blogs. That means AU members have over 100 diverse domains spread all over the globe that they can get links from.

That will help break up the patterns as Google and the other search engines will see diverse IP addresses from servers all over the world! Not just links from a handful of sites. Break the patterns! Spread the love!

Web pages with lots of diverse links are the ones that stay on top. Also fresh liks should be added over time. They shouldn’t just appear all in one day and boom it’s over. Good pages grow in popularity and get more fresh links over time.

The problem quite often is that anxious beginners and “quantity over quality mass production marketers” will often do things in such obvious and blatant ways that essentially they are tipping off Google that something that is NOT natural is occurring.

It’s too easy for us to break the patterns! Use common sense and work a little smarter! It’s not hard if you know how!

A little variation will go a long way! It’s the natural way!

The bottom line is that regardless of your methods of building your web publishing empire, you need to be aware that Google and the other search engines look for patterns, repetition and footprints that alert them that a site’s growth and characteristics are NOT natural.

“Automated type behavior” is a dead giveaway that a site is trying to get massive top rankings. Unfortunately more often than not this type of behavior is associated with spammers and ruthless webmasters just trying to make a buck and OFTEN NOT giving anything of value to visitors. Google and the other search engines do not like this at all and have algorhytms and filters to find patterns often associated with web spam.

Sure, your pages may look good and have value, but if they discover patterns and such commonly associated with spammers, it may drag you down off the front page.

While it’s great to build lots of sites with many pages, and get tons of links pointing at them, it’s very important that we realize we are not just in a rush to please ourselves, but ultimately it is Google and the other search engines whom we want to impress. That means we need to do the things the way they like them done, so they will rank us on top, not only for a week, but for a long long time!

The secret to long term success is to ACT NATURAL!

In other words when you do things that are beyond the scope of what happens when a real world web site grows NATURALLY and rises to the top in popularity, you run the risk of getting penalized.

In the real world as a site becomes popular it has diversity and variety naturally occurring. Links point at it because people like the site and they do so not to gain top rankings but to please themselves. Their web sites are spread out all over the world and they don’t always use perfect link text.

VARIETY and DIVERSITY are NATURAL. Patterns and repetition and footprints are NOT!

The answer is simple. Just mix things up! Just by being aware you’ll have an edge.

Patterns, repetition and footprints are often what will kill a site that otherwise has great momentum and upward movement. I’m not suggesting you must only build 1 page a day or cut your productivity drastically, what I am saying is that you need to think like a search engine and recognize that you may be doing things that can set off alarm bells and buzzers.

The good news is that if you are a member of Article Underground, you are armed with some of the best content, tools, training, real world knowledge and secrets around. In fact, almost all of the things you need to know are discussed in the many Article Underground training videos and materials in detail.

The private members forum is loaded with threads with discussions about what works and possibly more important – what does not work! Learn from the experience of others!

In fact, just by watching the recent AU training video “20 Top Linking Secrets” you will gain insight into the tips and tricks that will help make your pages rank #1 and keep them there!


If you haven’t yet watched this video – I highly suggest it. It’s loaded with solutions.

Sure, some of “the secrets” you may already know, but I bet there are a few nuggets in there that can help change the course of your web publishing future.

Now, before I close I want to remind you to NOT PANIC. It’s really uncommon that sites get severely penalized. It does happen often enough to be aware of, but don’t let that dampen your enthusiasm to succeed.

Just try to do the things that will help keep you out of the penalty box and you’ll be fine. The answers are variety and diversity!

Give the search engines what they want and try to avoid excessive patterns, repetition and footprints!

Best wishes for successful article marketing and web publishing!

Mike Liebner


  1. Here we have a paradox. If a search engine optimization is done incorrectly, it can not be considered as optimization. IMHO SEO is overrated. Internet marketer must be focused more on proper market selection and conversion, because if you have these factors traffic can be purchased with profit.

    Take a look at my last work at: Internet Marketing Triggers

    Comment by IMTriggers — November 3, 2007 @ 12:56 pm

  2. I think the solution is to build your links naturally.If you build your links naturally, then they will look ehmm.. natural

    I mean by building content rich sites and submit articles that i have written to article sites and doing things myself, rather than using multi-submission software, then one should not fall foul of the search engineswith respect to abnormal link patterns.

    Yes, I know it is slow but i am not going for a sharp rise and then burn out. I am looking to build a long term sustainable business

    Comment by affiliate guide — November 4, 2007 @ 1:42 pm

  3. Hey Mike,

    Very good article, you made some points that I hadn’t thought of before. Keep up the great work!

    Jason Cooper

    Comment by RebelMarketer — November 9, 2007 @ 12:12 am

  4. I’m guilty of several of the factors you outlined. One in particular is the in-text linking. I use the same phrases for nearly all of my in-text links. I can see how this would look unnatural.

    Comment by webdesigndave — November 28, 2007 @ 5:32 pm

  5. Great post! Except for duplicate content I believe the biggest risk is using the same link text when building links. If you want to target one search-phrase it’s tempting to use same link text so you’re getting the full potential from that created link.. but, in the long term you’ll get punished.

    I’m from sweden and it seems like Google isn’t that hard on greyhat/black hat linkbuilding methods as in the English speaking markets..? That makes me think that it’s not only computer alorithms that discovers unnatural link growth, but actual human beeings working on it too?


    Comment by Niklas Eklund — February 9, 2008 @ 8:09 am

  6. Great job Mike.

    Optimizing too much for the search engines, without regard to human consumption is a dangerous path. It’s ironic how many people shoot for SEO when it’s generally (although not always) top websites that DON’T worry about SEO.

    All the best,
    Matt Rhodes

    Comment by rhodesbrothers — February 12, 2008 @ 3:50 pm

  7. Nice article, Keep up the great work!
    Dofollow Social Bookmarking

    Comment by Kenny W. — July 26, 2009 @ 4:02 am

  8. Thank for your Sharing

    Susy Shin
    Media All

    Comment by Susy Shin — August 2, 2009 @ 12:24 am

  9. agree with this quotes
    “Optimizing too much for the search engines, without regard to human consumption is a dangerous path.”

    it will be great if the site is SEO naturally.

    Comment by Acne — August 4, 2009 @ 4:49 am

  10. What I have learned through the years? Keyword research is vital, use these keywords on the correct spots in your site and then start building links using our AU blogs and similar white hat programs and you will create top 10 ranking after top 10 ranking.

    Good luck!

    Comment by zoekmachine optimalisatie — September 10, 2009 @ 5:03 am

  11. That’s a great story
    Thank you for this sharing

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  12. It is useful for me indeed

    Comment by ฟังเพลง — November 25, 2009 @ 6:32 am

  13. Hey nice post
    I think its pretty risky to try to optimize a website by yourself because your website can get banned if you do it wrong , you can get profesional help and a good option its this an atlanta best search engine optimization. This post may help confused people.

    Comment by Criss Collins — December 14, 2009 @ 10:20 am

  14. Building backlinks to your website isn’t easy, but not impossible. Lets altercate some quick and simple means to antecedent links to your site 70-291, after accepting to go through the annoying and arid hotlink exchange/request action (which in my assessment is a careless exercise).When searching for architecture backlinks to your site, I consistently advance to accomplish it a convenance to put on your “users hat” 70-536. Being the webmaster will dark you from added perspectives and accomplish you focus too abundant on the numbers/number of backlinks and a lot of of the time, accomplish you un-impressive, which unfortunately, you wouldn’t apprehend at the time of sourcing links 70-649. The alone accessible way out is to be absolutely absorbing and charming, so that even if you didn’t ask, bulldoze humans to hotlink to you. So what are the means ? Let’s see.

    Comment by Hank — February 10, 2010 @ 11:57 pm

  15. Use silo seo and try to avoid diluting linkjuice too!

    Comment by search engine optimisation Sydney, Australia — February 23, 2010 @ 7:08 am

  16. before, I’m working is a website and I’m doing good, every day my rankings is improving but one day my rankings suddenly disappear. I don’t know why was that happened. I thought it was a penalty. So test if my site is still indexed by Google and it is. Somebody told me that it was just the competition but until I can’t understand it. I don’t know if it is penalty or not.

    Comment by Limoges Boxes — April 26, 2010 @ 5:14 pm

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    Comment by Nathanial Schwinghammer — December 2, 2010 @ 1:56 am

  18. SEO can surely have a negative impact if done incorrectly. Search engines are getting more intelligent by the year so deceiving is getting more difficult.

    Comment by Johan — December 21, 2010 @ 10:55 am

  19. Excellent suggestions. I like the “act natural” part! Success with your site is very rewarding and comes with a lot of work and time investment.

    Comment by LimogesBoxCollector — February 5, 2011 @ 10:40 am

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  22. If webmasters concentrate on targeting visitors’ needs with their landing pages, they can get away with far less traffic and not worry too much about off-page SEO all the time.

    Comment by Susan — July 17, 2011 @ 4:37 pm

  23. Wow! So many points I’ve not considered in my online efforts. Thanks for sharing!


    Comment by Eric — August 22, 2011 @ 12:42 pm

  24. All Google really wants you to do is design websites for people so all of their search engine algorithms are designed to promote those types of sites. I am not convinced that Google is actively penalizing sites except in very limited cases. If you are using a lot of paid link sites, blog farms, etc and Google discovers them and discounts them, it can look like a penalty when in reality, you just lost the link juice you never should have been using in the first place. I have not figured out the connection between SEO and Ngagwang Namgyi yet though.

    Comment by Steve T. — November 27, 2011 @ 12:03 pm

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