Welcome to aaron chua make money blog

Hi, welcome to my blog. In this part of my world, I talked about how to achieve financial freedom by learning how to make money online through creating sites and earning from them.

Below are some current and past make money projects that details my learning journey.

My current experiment in making 50 amazon site niches. If you have not been following this challenge, best place to start is this resource page for the amazon challenge, that lists all the articles that I have written so far.

My experiment in making 1000 a month through adsense in 9 months.

If you came here looking for low cost startup ideas, here are 140 startup ideas that you can browse through.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

My sites disappeared from the SERPS after the latest Google algorithm called webspam algorithm

There is a name for the latest Google algorithm change. It is called the webspam algorithm change. The name really says it all isn't it? Google is out to clean up the SERPs by removing all the webspam that is either onsite or through manipulating the rankings. However, within this change, there are many factors that might caused your site to disappeared from the SERPs. The following observations are what I can learn from my network of sites.

Why all my keywords lose rankings after the April 25 algorithm change?

The reason is nto clear cut and I see 2 major factors:

Observation 1: Big brands are moving up

It is natural to see brands moving up. If Google wants to remove webspam, the first logical thing is to give greater weight to sites with more trust. That means branded sites will get a leg up on our niche sites. I see this happening across my niches where big brands such as amazon, webmd etc are occupying top spots in the SERPs.

Due to the above, your niche site will be pushed down. If you experience a few ranking drops and see big brands above you, then the good news is that your niche is not penalised by this latest webspam algorithm. It is just that your site doesn't have the necessary trust and authority to outranked those branded sites above you.

Observation 2: Sites with links from private blog networks are losing ranks big time

I mentioned about a Google patent that might be used for this change. Here is the paper. Basically, it is an algorithm that attempts to determine the quality of a linking cluster and draw conclusions on whether the articles are manipulated.

In layman terms, it means that the algorithm is trying to analyse the backlink articles and see if the links placed are relevant with relations to the articles and the entire site. If the backlink articles are deemed to be manipulated, the linking destination (which is your site) will either drop in rankings and be completely deindexed.

From my own network of sites, this pattern is very obvious. Sites which had backlinks from only private blog networks such as BuildMyRank are dropping rankings like flies. Sites which had a more diversified backlink profile dropped less. Sites which had no artificial backlinks are unaffected and some even gain in rankings.

So, the message is loud and clear. If you want backlinks, do it the right way. Create great content and network with other webmasters to get them. Forget about trying to outsmart the webspam algorithm because it will only get better at detecting unnatural backlinks.

For me, I don't do the backlink game anymore. I focus more on identifying undeserved niches in up and coming markets and create content to serve those needs.Very often, you will find that you can indeed get search traffic without backlinks.

Look at all these terms I can traffic for when I wrote the latest google algorithm change yesterday. I couldn't build backlinks fast enough to rank for these terms even if I try.

(Click to enlarge)

So, if your site disappeared from the SERPs, understand whether it is because you being outgunned by the brands or you have been building too many links from private blog networks. 

Time to clean up and move on.


Sudarshan said...

@Aaron... How your websites performing after the latest hit??

aaronchua said...


Ever since panda 2.6 hit me last oct, I have moved on to build different kinds of sites. Most of them are like aronchua.com where the I build very little backlinks and focus more on writing helpful cotnent.

These are doing really great now after this latest algorithm update. I will announce these sites in the future.

For those niche sites we were taught to build, most of them are gone now. I don't really care much about them anyway so no big lost. I might have lose a couple of hundred dollars but I am already prepared to lost them anyway.

I hope you are doing well.

Norm said...

Hi Aaron,

I concur with your findings. The only thing I cannot verify is the private networks as I havent progress that far into participating in such, perhaps fortunate!

I have noticed Authority sites are definitely taken over, previously had a site with no links and was ranking on LOTS of terms for merely writing good content which is unfortunate but I can see why. Needs time to gain some authority.

However I did notice one of my existing sites take a hit slightly which unsure the stake of it until a month of data has passed.

An another which only built a few links does not seem to have been effected at all. Perhaps the link volume to this site is so minimal i.e. 10 is not large enough to be gauge by this algorithmn change.

You are right about building content based site is important, however its a catch 22 thing, write great content no one finds, build links people find but get nailed by the big G.

Which way is better?

Personally if Money IS NOT an issue, then write content and let time grow your authority.


aaronchua said...


Thanks for stopping by.

If you are in a hurry, I will say use Web2.0 properties as they ranked much faster.

Another way is to buy an aged domain or site and start building content. The age will let you draw in all the longtails.

As for your Catch 22, there are some simple solutions.

You need to use the social media crowd to get traffic first. This means commenting , guest posting etc.

However, you are right to say that authority sites take time to build. I am referring to 4-5 years if you are not a talented writer like me. Of course, there will always be somebody who can build a great site in a year but they are the exceptions who can write and present themselves well.

Anonymous said...

Hello Mr Chua,

How do you check if your site disappeared from the SERPS and whether it's affected by webspam algorithm?


aaronchua said...

Check your anaylytics. If you see a drastic dip i your search engine traffic between April 24 or April 25, your site has been affected.

To check the ranking for specific keyword, use the rank checker that is available in the seo for firefox toolbar.