Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Be Aware and Beware: Your Competitors Can Hurt Your Rankings

Most people believe that finding a great SEO campaign that does its job well is not all that you need. In fact, it is only a small part of your ranking battle. Once your website gets hosted and established, its time to think about competitors seriously. They can simply swoop in and disturb all of the hard work you had put in. Although unfair and unethical, it does happen. Each website owner should be aware of these things and know how to stop it too!

Various types of competitors can hurt your rankings. Some may be ethical and other unethical. However, the key to online business success is to know how to handle this well. Here's what you need to do in this respect:

Out Rank

If a competitor has a better marketing campaign and rankings than you do, they will certainly out rank you. It is a two-way competition. Just as you pushed others down to climb up the ranking ladder, your competitors will do the same to push their business forward. You need to continue with good marketing and ethical SEO tactics. This will help you outrank your competitors.

Understand that not everyone can hold the number one position. It is better to aim for top five. This increases your odds to get to the top and marketing gets simpler. Also, there are dim chances of being pushed out by a competitor while staying aggressive and updated with your marketing campaign.

Link Building is Important

Link ONLY to reputable sites while undergoing a link building campaign. It is also important to check back on the websites to ensure these are worthy of your link. In case, a website loses authority via using bad SEO tactics (linking to poor quality sites / creating spam to increase traffic), everyone linked pays the price and suffer from lower rankings.

Competitors tend to follow the strategy to lower the ranking system and bring down competitors. They may have your link backs placed on non-desirable sites. So keep constant tabs on your link backs. Also use disavow tool from Google to remove links. Always be vigilant while monitoring your website. Contact website owner and ask to have the link removed.

Review Sites

These are the best options to build your brand. These help in driving traffic to your website and establish authority on a specific industry. However, these may even destroy your reputation. Your competitors may be writing these reviews.

In case, an actual consumer writes a negative review, comment on the review and visually display your plan to rectify the situation. For competitor review, speak to the review site directly, and ask them to take down the reviews. Also try to respond to each review personally. Review all the top review sites regularly.

Find Bad Links

Trust the backlink monitoring tool for locating bad links.  It will display all of your backlinks. These can be sorted by backlinks passing PageRank - ones having no SEO value (nofollow) absolutely and those that get completely ignored by Google.  Pay attention to those Google acknowledges and ones that link back to you.

You can check backlinks profile manually. Also sort these by anchor texts and check the ones that look suspicious. Make sure you sort links by social shares. This helps with locating bad links. Remember that 95 per cent of bad links have 0 social shares.

Common Bad Links

Here are some of the common bad links to spot:

- Auto approved comments from un-moderated sites
- Links from pages with less or no content
- Link directories
- Social bookmarking websites
- Websites offering duplicated content
- Links from irrelevant websites

Check Anchor Text

Since many of the backlinks come from images or hidden from users, these may really tough to spot. You can find these by checking the anchor text used on that specific link. The location of the link will be highlighted once the anchor text is copied and pasted into your browser. To find hard to locate links, simply view the page source.

Tag bad links you see and eliminate after checking them.

Get Rid of Bad Links

It is easy. You simply need to get in touch with the webmaster and ask them to remove the bad links. In most cases, webmasters do not have any problems (especially if you are polite). They will remove it without bothering you much. However, if they do not do so, there are other ways you can get rid of these.

There are webmasters who will simply ignore your request. So instead of wasting time returning your request. Remember that the longer bad links are associated with your website, the longer rankings suffer. Also, if a webmaster wants to respond to your request, he/she will do it within 48 hours. In case, you don't get any response within this period, proceed to the next step and get the links removed.

Contact the hosting company and place a request to remove your link. Let them know that a specific site they host has been spamming your website.


Using the Google disavow tool can be helpful. It is an effective and easy to use that comes absolutely free of cost. You can go through the tutorials on 'how to use the tool' offered by Google. Although it may take longer, the tool is quite effective. When no one is ready to adhere to your instructions / rules and you simply cannot remove links removed using normal communications, the tool is just the right and best way to get what you want (without any foreign assistance).