Google Now Responding to Reconsideration Requests

Fahrenheit Marketing
Fahrenheit Marketing in Design

Google had been criticized for its lack of communication on penalties, especially with webmasters who submitted reconsideration requests but did not have manual penalties. Previously if a webmaster submitted a complaint but their site did not have a manual penalty, their correspondence was ignored. Now it appears that Google is notifying webmasters who submit re-inclusion requests but do not have manual penalties.

This is a positive step forward, but webmasters should not rush to use the re-inclusion request system as a type of diagnostic in determining whether they have a manual penalty. Google won’t respond overnight, and in the time you wait for a response, you can be running checks and looking at your Webmaster account to try and diagnose the problem.

Here are common signs of a manual penalty:
– Significant loss of rankings (30+ positions) for major keywords
– Site is no longer indexed (make sure you haven’t disallowed the site in Robots or accidentally set a global noindex nofollow in your CMS)
– Significant traffic losses for head terms

I have always believed that if Google issues a manual penalty against your site, it should never come as a surprise. You can’t engage in black-hat or dark gray tactics without assuming some risk of a penalty, even if other sites in your industry are engaging in the same tactics.

Photo: brionv