As mentioned in a previous article – https://www.theseoguy.co.nz/evaluating-seo-proposals/ – a lot of SEO consultants and companies do not follow best practice. Nor do they comply with Google’s webmaster guidelines or terms of service. Instead, they implement “black hat” shortcuts to boost rankings. This often includes using external links to your site posted on their own PBNs – private blog networks. That artificially boosts rankings in the short term but is a clear breach of Google’s Terms of Service.
Have your rankings just taken a tumble?
If you’ve previously employed an SEO company to improve your rankings, and their methodology was PBN links, that may be why…
A number of reputable SEO authorities report a great deal of ranking turbulence from 1 Feb 2017. They attribute that to Google implementing new mechanisms to detect and discount such spammy links. As a general rule, any aggressive link building efforts are high-risk.
If you are lucky, Google may have only discounted the spammy links- meaning you are no longer getting any ranking benefits from them. If the link profile is significantly outside your “industry standard profile” – you could incur a manual penalty for flagrantly breaching Google’s terms of service.
Either way, some remedial action is appropriate. The people who did the link-building work on your behalf my be reluctant to accept responsibility for the harm to your rankings. However, there are things that can be done to assist. If you need help, ask for a free, no-obligation SEO audit