In May we received many questions about site penalties, SEO best practices, organic click-through rates, and Google’s foray into financial lead generation. If you have any questions you would like us to answer for our Monthly Marketing Q&A, leave them in the comments below or click here to email us a question.
Do Manual Google Penalties Expire?
JC Penney’s huge penalty, received in February, was lifted after 90 days. The important thing to note is that JC Penney had apparently come under scrutiny in the past, so 90 days may have been on the more severe end of the spectrum. Manual penalties expire, but it takes time; submitting a reconsideration request may be the best way to shorten the duration of the penalty. The important thing to keep in mind is that your request is useless if you continue to engage in the offending activity.
How long does it take for a keyword stuffing penalty to get lifted?
A penalty like keyword stuffing is likely an automatic penalty assessed by the algorithm and not a manual adjustment. The penalty should be removed once you fix the problem areas and Google re-crawls your site. From that point on, it will take a few days for things to be restored.
What happens if someone submitted a webmaster complaint on your website?
I am assuming this means a complaint about paid links or perhaps some other infraction. If they submit it, Google may review it and take appropriate action if they find an infraction. The best way to avoid being reported is to engage in white hat SEO tactics from the beginning.
SEO Best Practices
How does a long domain registration affect rankings?
Google doesn’t include the length of the registration or time remaining before a domain expires as one of their ranking factors, but we recommend registering domains for multiple years at at a time to reduce management time and make sure to keep an eye on when your domains are expiring (unlike the web team for the Dallas Cowboys).
Organic Click-Through Rates
What percentage of clicks does the number 1 ranking get?
According to a recent study by Optify, ranking first for a search term will net you 36 percent of clicks and give you around three times as much traffic as ranking second for that keyword. This is by no means an exact answer, because the study relied on a limited set of searches. There are other factors that affect CTR, including the title tag and meta description.
What percentage of organic clicks lead to PPC conversions?
Hopefully zero. If someone visits your site through an organic search and then visits your site through PPC and converts, that means there is a conversion problem that is likely irrelevant content on the ranking page, counter-intuitive navigation or awesome PPC landing pages on a poorly designed site.
Google and Financial Lead Generation
Is Google Advisor unfair to advertisers?
I would have to agree. Google Advisor has been around for some time, but now, with a new look and additional promotion, the site is now taking customers from one of its more profitable industries. Even though advertisers for mortgages and credit cards spend millions of dollars each year in PPC, Google has decided that it’s more valuable to them to serve as a lead generation service rather than a conduit for advertising in that niche. The thing I worry about is Google jumping into as many profitable industries as possible, and the company is already moving towards the travel sector. Lead generation is a business largely conducted through search, and I really think Google is overstepping their boundaries.