One of the biggest concerns that many webmasters have is having their website or blog being Google slapped. It's one of the really common phrases that's thrown around out there, but if you're like most people then you know you don't want it to happen but you don't know what exactly it is or how to prevent it. Find a quick answer to both right here to ensure your website is safe and sound at the top of the Google results pages.
So when somebody says that they have been Google slapped, what exactly does that mean? It can actually have several exact meanings as people use the term in different ways, but one thing is consistent. Your website is penalized, quickly and strictly, by Google and it will make it nearly impossible for you to be found in the search engine results pages. Whether that means you were completely deindexed, temporarily removed, or simply slid down hundreds of spots to a very low perch, it's a painful punishment and it can have drastic effects on your website.
That means it's of the utmost importance that you learn to prevent yourself from being Google slapped. Take it from experience that many people, including myself, have learned that it's always better to prevent this kind of mishap instead of working to correct it down the road. The number 1 rule you should be abiding by is the general principle of white hat SEO and abiding by the general recommendations and conditions that Google puts forth for webmasters.
You will have to avoid all of the questionable and borderline questionable tactics that you have heard could get websites penalized and Google slapped. The obvious steps to avoid include hiding tons of keywords in the same color as your background to try to raise your rankings, keyword stuffing in general, forced redirection to your website for visitors, buying link placements on popular websites and selling link placements on your own and on down the line.
Anything that falls into this range of black hat or semi-black hat SEO can potentially get you Google slapped. These tactics and others could see you produce some fantastic results, but be forewarned, it can catch up to you and leave you penalized in a very bad way.
If you have been Google slapped and need to find a way to get back into the rankings, there are three steps you should take. The first is to take a deep breath and relax and realize that there is no instant cure. Often it just takes some time until your rankings are restored. Second, make sure you bring your website into compliance with all of Google's recommendations and best practices. Third and finally, start focusing on new means of traffic production in the mean time, from the other search engines, PPC, social networking and more.
Hopefully now you have a good idea about what being Google slapped really is. Yes, it really does exist and it really can have terrible effects on your website. Keep yourself in compliance with Google's terms, conditions and recommendations and remember that any short lived gains from black hat SEO can come back to hurt you in the end.