Over the weekend Interflora started to reappear in searches for their brand name and more crucially the keywords that drive the most revenue, although further down the rankings than they previously were. The implication here is that the penalty is over but their positions seem to have been reset to where they would have been if they had not been trying to boost their position through the Advertorials that they bought from the Regional Press.
The twist though, and a delicious irony, was a piece by Yousaf Sekander in The Independent on Sunday which examined the issues around the Google penalty. Whilst not adding anything to the detail that has already been posted by the SEO community, it did however attract a couple of comments at the bottom of the article, the first of which is priceless.
One of Google’s ‘forbidden tactics’ variously practised by many link builders over the years is to insert irrelevant links into the comments on articles with a hope of getting some ‘link juice’ passed back to the target. Having followed this link I can tell you that is nothing but a spammy ‘black hat’ site demonstrating much of what is wrong with the internet and simply cluttering up the ether with pointless noise. As a further black hat twist, when you try to close down the page it offers you this popup which won’t go away.
The site is rubbish, loaded with adverts and offers the end user nothing.
What is amazing though is that this comment ever got past the moderators in the first place and that it remains in place today. It is black hat and extremely poor link building practice and definitely falls foul of the Google guidelines. But I guess these guys won’t be around long enough to worry about that.
Proof if any were needed that the battle that Google is fighting to clean up the internet is far from over, and even making very public penalties like the one suffered by Interflora recently, does nothing to deter the spammers.