Google’s Link Spam Update: What Is It and How To Recover From It?

Reliqus Marketing

15 December 2022

Link Building

Google recently announced an update to its algorithm that will target link spam. This update, which is set to go into effect in December 2022, will penalize websites that engage in link spam. Link spam is the practice of buying or selling links in order to artificially inflate a website’s link popularity. 

This can be done by buying links on other websites or by participating in link schemes, such as link farms. Google’s updates are designed to improve the quality of search results by weeding out websites that are engaged in these black-hat SEO practices. If your website is engaging in link spam, you could see a significant drop in your search engine rankings. Let’s Learn more in detail with Reliqus Consulting.


What Is Google’s Link Spam Update?

Google’s Link Spam Update December was an algorithm update made by Google on December 17, 2014. The purpose of the update was to target websites that were engaged in link spam. The update caused a significant drop in traffic for many websites, especially those in the fitness, health, and weight loss niches.

Google has announced a new update to its link spam algorithm, which is set to roll out in December 2022. This update is designed to combat an increasingly common problem in the SEO world: link spam. Link spam is when a website creates artificial links to its site in an attempt to game the system and improve its search engine ranking. 

This update from Google will penalize websites that engage in this practice, and it’s a good thing for everyone who values quality content. Here are some more details about the update, and what you can expect if you’re running a website.

Link spam is the practice of low-quality links building to a website in order to artificially inflate its search engine rankings. Google’s December update targeted websites that were using link spam techniques such as link farms, blog comment spam, and forum signature spam.

The update caused a major shakeup in the search engine results pages (SERPs), with many sites that were previously ranking well suddenly dropping down or disappearing entirely from the SERPs. This had a significant impact on traffic levels for many websites, especially those in highly competitive niches such as fitness and weight loss.

If you operate a website in one of these niches, it’s important to be aware of Google’s stance on link spam and to make sure that your link-building activities are aboveboard. Linking to low-quality websites or engaging in any type of link scheme can put your site at risk of being penalized by Google.


What Are The Different Types of Link Spam?

There are three different types of link spam:

  1. Spammy links in your content: These are links that are included in your content, but are not relevant to the topic or add value for the reader. They are usually inserted for SEO purposes and can be spotted by looking for irrelevant keywords or anchor text. If you have any of these links in your content, remove them immediately.
  2. Spammy links in your comment section: These are comments that include links that are not relevant to the discussion or add value to the reader. They are usually inserted for SEO purposes and can be spotted by looking for irrelevant keywords or anchor text. If you have any of these links in your comments, remove them immediately.
  3. Spammy backlinks: These are links from other websites to yours that are not relevant to the topic or add value for the reader. They are usually inserted for SEO purposes and can be spotted by looking at the link’s anchor text and destination URL. If you have any of these backlinks, contact the website owner and ask them to remove the link. And make sure to adopt effective backlinks strategies.


What Are Google’s Penguin And Panda Updates?

Google's Link spam update December 2022

Google’s Penguin and Panda updates are two of the most significant changes to its search algorithm in recent years. Both updates were designed to combat web spam, and both have had a major impact on the visibility of websites in Google’s search results.

Penguin was first rolled out in 2012, and it targeted sites that were engaged in link spamming – that is, artificially inflating their link popularity by buying or exchanging links with other sites. This update had a major effect on many small businesses and affiliate marketers who relied heavily on link building as a way to improve their search engine rankings.

Panda was first introduced in 2011, and it targeted sites with thin or low-quality content. This update caused many so-called “content farms” to lose a significant amount of traffic, as their articles were no longer appearing in Google’s search results. Panda has been updated several times since its initial rollout, and it continues to be an important part of Google’s fight against web spam.

If your website was affected by either of these updates, there is no need to panic. Both Penguin and Panda are designed to target specific types of web spam, and there are steps you can take to recover from them. In most cases, simply improving the quality of your content and making sure that your links are coming from reputable sources will be enough to get you back on Google’s good side.


How Will The Update Affect SEO?

The December update to Google’s algorithm will target link spam, penalizing sites that engage in this black-hat SEO tactic. This means that any site that has been using link spam to artificially inflate its search rankings could see a significant drop in its position.

Link spam is a common way for unscrupulous SEOs to try and game the system, and it’s something that Google has been cracking down on for years. This latest update is just another step in their efforts to keep the search results clean and free of manipulation.

If your site has been hit by this update, there’s no need to panic. Simply assess your link profile and remove any spammy or low-quality links. Once you’ve cleaned up your backlink portfolio, you can submit a reconsideration request to Google, and (assuming there’s no other issue with your site) you should eventually see your rankings recover.


What Can Webmasters Do Prepare For The Update?

As Google prepares to release its latest update to combat link spam, webmasters should take a few precautionary measures to ensure their sites are not adversely affected.

First and foremost, webmasters should check their site’s backlink profile to ensure that there are no suspicious or unnatural links pointing to their site. If any such links are found, they should be disavowed using Google’s disavow tool.

Additionally, webmasters should take care to only build high-quality links from reputable sources. Linking to low-quality or spammy sites can hurt a site’s ranking, so it’s important to be selective about the sites you link to.

Finally, webmasters should make sure their site’s content is of the highest quality and relevance to their target audience. This has always been important for SEO services providers, but it becomes even more crucial in the face of an algorithm update like this one.


What Are The Long-Term Effects Of The Update?

It’s been a little over a month since Google released its latest link spam update, and webmasters are still scrambling to recover. The long-term effects of the update are still unknown, but there are some early indications of what the future may hold.

One of the most immediate impacts of the update was an increase in 404 errors. This is likely due to Google devaluing or even removing links from low-quality sites. If your site has lost links as a result of the update, it’s important to monitor your 404 errors closely and redirect any broken URLs to relevant pages on your site.

Another potential long-term effect of the update is increased competition for higher-quality links. With Google cracking down on link spam, it’s more important than ever to make sure your site is linked to high-quality websites. If you’re not already doing so, now is the time to start actively pursuing link opportunities from reputable sources.

Of course, only time will tell what the full impact of Google’s latest update will be. In the meantime, webmasters can take steps to ensure their sites are as prepared as possible for whatever changes may come.

How To Avoid Link Spam?

If you’re running a website, it’s important to be aware of Google’s updates to their algorithm so that you can keep your site visible in search results. The December update to the Google algorithm was designed to target link spam. Link spam is when a site artificially inflates its ranking by adding links from low-quality sites or by creating links that aren’t relevant to the content.

To avoid being penalized by this update, take care to only add links to your website that are high-quality and relevant. If you’re not sure whether a link is of high quality, ask yourself if the site is well-designed and has informative content. You should also make sure that the link leads to a page on your website that is relevant to the linked page’s content. Finally, avoid adding too many links at once – Google may view this as spammy behavior.


How To Recover From The Link Spam Update?

If Google’s link spam update has hit you, there are a few things you can do to recover. 

First, take a look at your backlink profile and see if there are any low-quality or spammy links pointing to your site. If so, reach out to the webmaster of those sites and ask them to remove the links.

Next, take a look at your website’s content and make sure it’s high quality and informative. If you have any thin or duplicate content, consider rewriting or removing it. 

Finally, build some more high-quality backlinks to your site from reputable websites. This will help improve your site’s link popularity and signal to Google that your site is worthy of ranking high in the search results.


There Are a Few Things You Can Do To avoid Google’s Link Spam Update:

  1. Use Google’s disavow tool. Using this tool, you can instruct Google not to consider certain links when determining your site’s rating.
  2. Monitor your website’s backlinks using a tool like Ahrefs. This will allow you to quickly identify and remove any spammy links that have been added without your knowledge.
  3. Be careful to who you give access to your website. Only give trusted individuals access to make changes or add content. This will help prevent someone from adding links without your permission.
  4. Use a robots.txt file to block search engines from indexing pages on your site that you don’t want them to index. This can help prevent link spam if someone is able to add links to these pages without your knowledge.
  5. Keep an eye on your website’s analytics data. If you see a sudden drop in traffic or an increase in 404 errors, it could be an indication that link spam has occurred on your site.


How To Avoid A Google Link Spam Penalty?

Avoiding a Google link spam penalty is not difficult if you take some precautions by following Google’s Link Spam Update guidelines:

First, avoid participating in link schemes. A link scheme is any behavior that tries to artificially increase your site’s ranking in Google search results. This includes buying links, selling links, or participating in link exchanges. 

Second, make sure that all the links on your website are relevant and of high quality. Irrelevant or low-quality links can lead to a penalty. 

Finally, avoid using automated programs to build links to your site. Google can detect these programs and penalize you for using them. If you follow these guidelines, you should be able to avoid a Google link spam penalty.


Here’s what you need to do to recover from a Google link spam penalty:

  1. Identify which of your links are considered spammy.
  2. Remove or disavow any links that Google considers spammy.
  3. Submit a reconsideration request to Google detailing the steps you’ve taken to clean up your link profile.
  4. Monitor your website’s progress and adjust your linking tactics as needed.

By following these steps, you can recover from a Google link spam penalty and get your website back on track.



Google’s latest link spam update has caused a lot of businesses to panic, but there is no need to worry. If you have been affected by this update, simply follow the steps outlined in this article and you will be back on track in no time. Remember, Google is constantly changing and evolving, so it is important to stay up-to-date with the latest algorithm updates. By doing so, you can ensure that your website will always be in good standing with Google.

Also Read: Google March Core Algorithm Update 2023 | Google Algorithm Updates


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