5 Ways to Keep Your Site Out of a Google Search
Here at Red Sage, we often talk to customers about how to show up well in Google search results. SEO (search engine optimization) is a big word in our industry and there is plenty advice out there on how to do it right. With so many different factors to keep up with, it can be hard to do SEO right. But, how you do it wrong? Well, that question is much easier to answer. Here are five ways you can keep your site from showing up in a Google search:
1. Make It Impossible for Google to Crawl or Index Your Site
Do you remember the saying, “I can’t see you, so you can’t see me?” Same thing here. If Google can’t crawl or index your site, your site doesn’t exist to Google. Pretty much a guarantee that your site will not show up in any search results.
One big way you can accomplish this feat is set your site configuration to not allow robots to crawl your files (in Joomla, this meta tag can be changed with a quick click in the global configuration settings). Check your site using the Fetch as Google tool in your Google Webmasters account. If it returns nothing, you have successfully hidden your site from the bots.
2. Buy Links
Oddly enough, even Google has been banned from Google for buying links. Good, quality links coming back to your site are huge in the SEO world because they affect your PageRank, which in turn affects where you end up in different search results. If links are so important, it only makes sense that someone should start selling them, right? And that you should take that someone up on their offer? If you want to fall out of the Google search results, follow in the steps of Hotels.com, JCPenny, and yes, even Google, and buy links to your site.
3. Hide the Good Stuff Just for the Robots
Cloaking sounds like it belongs in the Harry Potter series of books, but in SEO it simply means you’re hiding something. You’ve got content, images, and other elements for the world to see and a whole slew of other things hidden in the code just for the robots. One of my favorite examples of this is white text on a white background, but it can go much deeper than that. Not sure who thought that was going to fly under Google’s radar for long. If Google catches you hiding things, your site is out of the rankings. Funny thing, Google has even caught itself cloaking!
4. Skip the Tedious Task of Creating Good Content
Continuously writing good, quality content for your website can be a big chore. It is tempting to “borrow” well-performing content from other sites, including videos, and publishing them on your site without very little original content added. Not only could this been seen by Google as a negative SEO trick that results in your site being kicked out of the index, it could also be seen as plagiarism and result in a legal action against you.
5. Install Malicious Malware on Your Site
Oftentimes this step is done for you by someone else without you even asking (or knowing). It typically results in a quick flag on your site in the Google search results and then a drop off of the rankings. It also results in loss of general traffic to your site outside of the search engines as people realize your site has given them a nasty gift. Even if a hacker does not install malware on your site, they may leavehacked content or redirect links on your site, which could have disastrous results for your site’s search rankings. If someone helps you with this step, check out Google’s guide for cleaning up hacked sites.
Do It the Right Way
If you are interested in learning more about how to avoid these five bad SEO practices, give us a call at 256-560-0098. We can help you with all aspects of website development, including search engine optimization.