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With Google changing the local search results so now just 3 appear instead of 7, there’s going to be the same level of, or more, competition for fewer search results. Just Google any common local business like “Dallas doctor” to see what we mean.

Though Google regulates SEO to some degree, it’s still a wild place at times. And it can be easily manipulated.

For example, anyone is free to build a back-link to any website they want from their own site. And not all sites tightly oversee which sites their users link to.

So, your competitor, at any time, could easily ask their SEO company to link to your site from sites Google explicitly doesn’t like. They could link to your site from adult or gambling websites.

And when Google sees those links, even though you didn’t post them, it holds you responsible for them.

That’s a simple negative SEO attack that can ruin your rankings.

When someone unethically and dishonestly goes outside the rules, what do honest small businesses like you do?

  1. Preventative Action is Always Better – You May Never Recover from a Successful Attack

Yes, Google does have the Disavow tool. That lets you tell it you don’t want some links to count against your website profile.

But, it’s not an easy or fast tool to use. And Google doesn’t acknowledge changes you request quickly – if ever (in some cases).

Professionals SEOs setup e-mail alerts in your Google Webmaster tools as a starting point. Next, they actively monitor your link profile. Some link-checking tools check your links every day and automatically send you reports when you gain or lose important links.

Link monitoring’s most important because that’s the easiest and most common way negative SEO happens.

Another common technique black-hat spammers try is to contact website owners where you have good links placed, and they’ll pose as you. You can get around this by always contacting other website owners from your domain’s e-mail address, rather than a Gmail or Yahoo account.

  1. Monitor for Duplicate Content

Another common attack is to copy and paste your website’s content all over the web. A few pages probably won’t affect your rankings.

But let’s say your attacker is serious, they go all out, and then they copy and paste the majority of your content. Copyscape helps you monitor for this, and then your SEO team will have to contact the website owners and notify them of the issue.

You Can’t Tackle Negative SEO on Your Own!

SEO is just too complex to manage all by yourself, in addition to all the other things you do as a small business owner. Monitoring and prevention aren’t all that hard. But, managing a negative SEO attack as it happens is time-consuming.

The best defense strategy is to have an experienced SEO team that you trust watching your back.



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