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What to do when search engines unfairly penalize your website?

Let's say you advertise on Indeed or Bing or Google, and suddenly they decide to remove all your organic traffic, or worse - all your paid AND organic traffic, for no reason other than one of their stupid traffic scoring algorithms erroneously detected that your your ads or your website is bad?

Contacting them to fix the problem is a waste of time.  However, to prevent your competitors from gaining an unfair competitive advantage, here's what you can do:

  • Run a web robot or Botnet with well distributed traffic statistics (IP addresses, user agents etc.) to deplete your competitors ad spend and get them out from the search engine as well
  • With the same Botnet, generate large amounts of fake impressions with 0 conversion, to make your competitors CTR so bad that they won't receive organic traffic anymore.

Should you use any of these strategies, you should first contact a lawyer as regulations regarding Botnet-controlled web traffic depends on local / state / country laws. You might also consider using an "open Botnet" where all computers are knowingly part of the Botnet (unlile a regular Botnet which is made of hijacked computers), as these open Botnets are more difficult to prosecute, in particular if run from abroad.

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Replies to This Discussion

Note that your traffic could have been detected as bad because one of your competitors is manipulating your clicks and impressions in order to kill you, get you out of the search engine, and thus pay a lower CPC because of reduced competition. One of these schemes is called impression fraud.

Big question: how do you improve these web traffic scoring algorithms, to reduce false positives and false negatives? An example of false negative is websites that appear on Google search result pages (both paid and organic!!) when you enter the query "download sqirts". Google failed to detect that this is hard core porn, or to put it in a different way, porn webmasters figured out a way to circumvent the Google porn filter.

I feel your best bet is to work with the Search Engines and rectify the reason for which the website was removed from search listings. Creating click fraud will not benefit any one is highly unethical practice.

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