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Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible?

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Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible? EmilyJohnson 8/2/13 6:41 AM
I've read the FAQs and searched the help center. 
 
Hi there!
I have just received a manual penalty for unnatural inbound links.
 
I've just taken charge of this site and haven't done any link building myself but there are external links there.
 
I've included a few of the linking domains and the number of links each has below.
 
I think the number of links from each is so low that Google wouldn't care about them.
 
Please could you look at one or two of them and tell me if links like these could be the cause of my manual penalty?
 
Many thanks,
 
Emily Johnson
 
 
 
Re: Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible? Aaseesh Marina 8/2/13 8:12 AM
Hello Emily,

The links you mention are the domains on which backlinks to your site are present. To get a better idea of the links to your site, you can download a list in Webmaster Tools by doing the following:

2. Click on 'Search Traffic' and then 'Links to Your Site.'
3. Under 'Who links the most,' click 'More.'
4. At the top of the page, click on 'Download more sample links.'

Once you get the list, look for possibly artificial or unnatural links pointing to your site that could be intended to manipulate PageRank. Examples of unnatural linking could include buying links to pass PageRank or participating in link schemes. Here is an article describing these techniques:

For example, on http://www.justluxe.com/community/science-and-technology-news-with-a-luxury-look-and-feel_a_1863626.php, there is a link to http://www.planettechnews.com/ that looks like it may be a paid advertisement without preventing search engines from following the link.

When you can confirm that backlinks to your site are no longer unnatural, you can file a reconsideration request. 

Hope this helps.

Regards,
Aaseesh
Re: Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible? EmilyJohnson 8/2/13 2:55 PM
Hi Aaseesh
 
Many thanks for your reply. I shall look through the backlinks as you suggest.
 
Please may I ask just one more question?
 
If all the other backlinks were OK, would the 7341 backlinks from our mirror site http://hitchtracker.com be enough to trigger a manual penalty on their own?
 
Thank you for helping.
 
Best Regards,
 
Emily
Re: Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible? northofthecity 8/2/13 3:19 PM
Firstly, get rid of the mirror site.

Mirror site = death

Secondly, if your site is important to you, pony up and get a one month subscription to one of the better backlink analysis tools and figure out yourself what back links are good and which aren't.

Ultimately, you will have to look at EACH BACK LINK YOURSELF AND DETERMINE if it is a good backlink or not.

I think the number of links from each is so low that Google wouldn't care about them.

And I think you are thinking incorrectly about this.
Re: Manual penalty: Could backlinks from these sites be responsible? EmilyJohnson 8/5/13 2:05 AM
Thanks northofthecity. Really good advice.
 
Best Regards,
Emily