Google’s work to target spammy links has those who use black hat techniques up in arms. A new algorithm is set deliberately to search out and destroy websites that use spammy links, such as payday loans, and those who made the websites are rather upset about it.
The algorithm is still quite new. It was announced on the evening of the 11th, and Google’s Matt Cutts says the update will be a continual process over the next short while. “It’s a multifaceted rollout that will be happening over the next 1-2 months,” said Cutts, announcing the update before his SMX Advanced chat on Twitter.
The algorithm update is specific to often spammed searches and industries. These include the previously mentioned “payday loans” query and various pornographic related searches. Such industries had not previously been sifted through as rigorously by Google, but they plan to change that.
This new algorithm update is projected to affect about 0.3% of US queries, but other countries where spam sites are more prevalent may see a change in up to 4% of the results.
The black hat crowd, however, doesn’t intend to take this sitting down. Although Google isn’t saying much about how the algorithm detects the spam sites, black hatters (in this situation, it might not be incorrect to refer to them as “mad hatters”) are already working out how to get their links back up in the rankings.
Some are using less conventional methods, and not so much for rankings as for retaliation. For example, one black hatter in the UK made sure that, if you had searched “payday loans” on Google.co.uk up until even just a few hours ago, one of the first results was a blog called “paydayloansfrommrcutts.blog.co.uk,” a site whose description stated, “Get payday loans here today from Mr. Cutts! Up to £1000, 100% secure!” The link, which apparently led to a very odd redirect, was put up yesterday but has already been removed from results.
The age-old conflict continues; as Google works to destroy spammy websites, black hat technique users work to put their links back in the results. But if the worst the black hatters can do is insults, I think Google is winning this round.