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Google's Penalty

Updated on August 3, 2009

Check Search Engine Penalty

Why check for penalty

As I wrote a hub about getting backlinks, someone commented that when he exchanged links with a few sites, his ranking in SERPS dropped. My reply was that he might have exchanged links with a site that was penalized by search engines. It was then that I thought about writing a hub about checking a penalized site so that it will be a bit easier for you to choose sites for exchanging links. This article is mainly about penalization by Google as other search engines are not known to apply much penalties but the same applies to other search engines other than the page rank(its not that they don't maintain PR of a site, they do so secretly).

This hub will also help you check if your own site or blog is penalized. So here are a few ways to check if your or someone else's website/blog is penalized.

Zero Page Rank

The site is up for 8 months or more and still have a Page Rank(PR) 0. If you see a good looking website with a zero PR, check how long it has been up and if it has been up for a long time then there is a big chance that this site is penalized by Google.

Few Indexed Pages

Google has indexed very fewpages of that site. Example the site has 400 pages and Google has 70 or so in its index.
To check the indexed pages, go to and in the search bar write "" without quotes. Don't forget to replace example with site's url.

Site not shown in SERPS

Site is indexed but is no where to be seen in SERPS(Search Engine Result Pages). Search some main keywords for that site and see if it can be found anywhere in the first 10 pages or so and if it is not there then it is penalized.

What to do if your site is penalized?

If your site is penalized by Google then you don't have much chances of penalty getting removed whatever you do unless Google itself realizes that Penalty should be removed. Still if you want to try, just write to Google from your Google Webmasters account. They(Google) want you to confess all your wrong-doings in front of the Google priest. Once you do that, you will be told to wait for a few weeks and even after 6 months you won't get a reply. By confessing I mean tell them anything you might possibly have done wrong like hiring a SEO specialist whose tactics must have gone wrong. Don't get very hopeful as Google won't reply. Just be patient and try to optimize your site for other big search engines like Yahoo and Bing.


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    • profile image

      Rookster 6 years ago

      Very good info on Hub. Lots of good SEO related Hubs, as well.

      HEADS UP for anybody trying to do the

      "" suggestion above.

      I have two websites I own-when I did it for my first site, worked fine, no problems.

      When I did it for my second site it came up "Could not find ANY records".

      Not Good!

      Until,,,I did some pokin'-checked with Google webmaster tools, forum, etc.

      Turns out that my site was fine for being indexed on Google, however, my server was simply REDIRECTING all traffic from "" to simply "" - (WITHOUT the "www")


      I would be MORE specific and give the URL of my website that this happened with here, however, "Hub rules" indicate that I'm NOT supposed to "promote other [my own] sites" !


      If the same is happening to anybody reading this Hub, Don't panic!

      Try entering [in Google search bar] JUST:


      without the "www"

      Sincerely hope this helps!

      Once again, good info on all SEO related Hubs, Mr. Ultimate Hubber.

      Keep up the good work,please!

    • Guitplayer profile image

      Guitplayer 8 years ago

      Thanks for the good info. I am new to this seo game, so it is nice to know what to look out for.

    • Ultimate Hubber profile image

      Ultimate Hubber 8 years ago

      Great tip UK SEO. This will help my readers.

    • profile image

      UK SEO 8 years ago

      Good hub, if you are new to link building it is easy to get scammed by people offering you links. First thing I do is check the cached page. It may have fake pagerank, when you view the cache it will show a totally different site.

    • Ultimate Hubber profile image

      Ultimate Hubber 8 years ago

      Patti, I also have one. :)

    • Patti Ann profile image

      Patti Ann 8 years ago from Florida

      Thanks for the info - I think I may have one site where this has happened.

    • Ultimate Hubber profile image

      Ultimate Hubber 8 years ago

      I am glad you found it useful E. Thanx for the comment.

      Ah! My friend Dohn, I am already writing another hub about what will get a site penalized. If I wouldn't have slept, the article would have been published till now.

      I better get back to writing. Thanx for the comment.

    • Ultimate Hubber profile image

      Ultimate Hubber 8 years ago

      Great advice David. But this will mean starting a completely new website. Thanx a lot for the comment.

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 8 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 8 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      Another useful hub, UH. What would cause anyone to get penalized in the first place?

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 8 years ago from London, UK

      This is very useful info. Cheers.

    • dawei888 profile image

      dawei888 8 years ago

      Great hub about the 'ol Google Slap. I have a solution: Bring the website up on a new domain name. This would mean changing the content so it looks unique. also, u might want to use a different hosting account so it's not coming from the same IP. This is a total hassle but maybe worth it if the website was making you money. Also, on the new domain build links very slow and use lots of different kinds of websites to link from not just one or two. thanks, david