Share your automotive expertise

2 Write a Blog Post

Filed in: Marketing, Internet/BDC

New Penguin Update: Get Rid of Paid Links Now!

By Eric Miltsch on Oct 8, 2013

Google announced another update to Penguin's algorithm that is clearly targeting website owners who have bought paid links. 

Simplest breakdown: If you have bought links that point back to your website, lose them. And they specifically said, "If your website rankings dropped after Google's Penguin update, you should try to get rid of the paid links."  

Think of Google as a bloodhound. They'll sniff these links out eventually. I'm going to keep pound the table on this topic - Google is turning into an "Answer Engine" and morphing away from simply being an index engine. they're going to make this transition by finding the old-school methods of trying to rank content and rewarding sites who are doing things the right way: Creating content that actually helps the user. 

Google's exact response has always been a very top-level approach:

We’ve always targeted webspam in our rankings, and this algorithm represents another improvement in our efforts to reduce webspam and promote high quality content. While we can't divulge specific signals because we don't want to give people a way to game our search results and worsen the experience for users, our advice for webmasters is to focus on creating high quality sites that create a good user experience and employ white hat SEO methods instead of engaging in aggressive webspam tactics.

So, what can you do to act upon this? 

Stop thinking like a traditional SEO by relying solely on your ability to use a keyword suggestion tool and place those keywords within your website solely for the purpose of trying to rank for a keyword phrase. Sure, this will continue to work some sites based on the competition and the keywords chosen, but it won't be a successful long term strategy. This is what will separate the real marketers from the hacks.

Google is now in the entity optimization business. 

Think of the entities involved with your business - three simple factors need to be highlighted now more than ever: 

1. People

2. Places

3. Things

How will these be all tied together to provide better results? Elements such a Gogle+ profiles, stronger social content, Q&A content & leveraging the Structured Data Markup tool within Google Webmaster Tools will all contribute to the new wave of search marketing.

Google wants to find these entities and tie them together to create deeper meaning behind them using structured data (the semantic web) so they will have better methods of understanding user intent by drawing on larger databases of marketing information. 

See, SEO isn't dead. It's just being born. 


Hey Eric- I have to admit, I get some entertainment out of these updates and watching for those who step up on the Google WMT blog to complain about how their site traffic tanked. Then I go to their sites, run a quick AHREFs scan and find obvious paid links.
I don't understand why people keep doing the same things over and over: buying links, making thin mini-sites, "buying do-follow ads," etc, and expecting that they will get away with it. Maybe someday this will all end and we'll have an update called "Unicorn" - the non-existent spam free web! :)

Oct 8, 2013

BTW - best part of your post IMO:
"Google is now in the entity optimization business.
Think of the entities involved with your business - three simple factors need to highlighted now more than ever:
1. People
2. Places
3. Things


Oct 8, 2013

There will always be gamers. Funny how some even think they can outsmart the SE's.

Thanks for the nod.

Oct 8, 2013

Comments 1 - 3 of 3

You must be logged in to comment

Login Create an account

Add your comments:


Eric Miltsch's Recent Posts

Related Posts

  • Why Does Offering Service Valet Increase RO Value by 20%?

    Why do customers who do not visit the dealership spend 18% more on auto service? Evidence and armchair psychology support our analysis. I recently published a case study about the effects of service pick-up and delivery (service valet) on loaner turn time.  You can read the paper . (Spoiler alert: Loaner turn time was reduced by approximately 1.2 days, or over 40%.) The study had a few other gems.  Among them, analysis showed customers who used service valet had RO values 18% higher than those who did not use service valet. Theoretically, these service valet customers  could have had more expensive repairs but that is not likely given the large sample size. Instead, our longstanding experience shows service valet customers purchase more recommended services. So this begs the question:   Why do customers who do not visit the dealership spend 18% more on auto service? Evidence and armchair psychology support our analysis.  Consider the psychology from the customer’s viewpoi...Read post

  • Mike Martinez of DMEautomotive Selected to Present at the 2015 DrivingSales Executive Summit

    Martinez’s presentation “GRO Your Bottom Line” selected by auto dealers in a highly competitive process; joins an agenda with four award-wining authors and other industry experts Daytona Beach, FL – October 6, 2015 – Mike Martinez, Chief Marketing Officer of DMEautomotive and AutoPoint, has been selected to present at the seventh annual DrivingSales Executive Summit (DSES), one of the largest gatherings of progressive dealer executives, on October 19th at 11:15 AM at the Bellagio Las Vegas. Martinez’s presentation “GRO” Your Bottom Line was selected by a panel of dealers in a highly competitive process, in which only 1 in 3 applications was accepted.    Martinez joins a powerhouse DSES agenda that includes a Harvard Business School faculty member, leading search marketing and content marketing strategists, branding experts and technology visionaries, and award-winning authors. The DSES has sold out every year since inception and hosted over 1,000 attendees last y...Read post

  • Myth: Negative Comments are Bad For Biz

    Many businesses have avoided social interaction for fear that an existing bad reputation, or possible negative comments will come back to bite them.  These ideas may be true if the issues are left unchecked, but for a business that is highly active on social media, negative comments can turn into a positive experience. Legitimate customer comments around a product or service will definitely start to pop up when a business decides to start regularly using social media to promote their business.  Many of these could be negative comments which may cause some alarm to those not well-versed in the ways of social media marketing.  However, there is one simple solution - use social media as a platform to address customer issues head-on and allow customer service to shine. Rather than hiding legitimate concerns or negative comments, a business should provide a thoughtful response with options to further assist a customer via phone or email.  Also, someone should follow up internally to e...Read post

  • Navigating SEO: The 4 Most Important Factors to Dealership SEO Success

    Navigating SEO is a exclusive series by Timothy Martell, CEO of Wikimotive. In this series, Tim breaks down ways dealers can improve their SEO and offers insight into how it will benefit business.   While there are thousands of articles that talk about search ranking factors, the majority of your site's success will come down to a few core factors. Ensuring you've got those boxes checked is what ultimately allows you to have the best search presence in your market.   In this post, I'll go over four of the most important factors that determine SEO success for car dealers, while offering tips and tricks to help you improve your site, grow organic traffic consistently, and sell more cars as a result.   Website Architecture   By now, you all know how important it is to actually have a website. There's just no contesting this in 2015. But beyond simply having a website, it's important that your site is developed and designed to allow it to comply with curren...Read post

  • 3 Birds Launches All-New Dealer Solution 3 Birds ME at Digital Dealer 19

    3 Birds Marketing has launched its all-new 3 Birds ME digital solution, the industry’s first all-in-one solution to show the results of each marketing component and reveal extra opportunities, at Digital Dealer 19. ME stands for “Market Effectively” and is a complete integrated solution that makes it easy to say the right thing at the right time across key channels on any device to reach the best customers. ME further eliminates frustrations and removes unnecessary layers of account management thanks to an advanced “Always On, Always Learning” analytics engine, developed in-house to meet the needs of modern dealers, regional groups, and OEMs.Read post

  • Second Chance Money

    How many of us out there are losing out on a second chance to sell the job? You would be surprised what a Thank You letter with a coupon can do for your business 10 to 20 days after the customer has visited your store. I have been using these declined services letters for quite some time now. Currently we are averaging over $250 per RO with the system we have in place. I have used many vendors to send the letters. I also have tried it internally, but not with much success. Recently we have expanded the process using an email and a letter. I would imagine it will all be email in no time. My first question to all of you is, what works best for you? Are you using key words, labor ops or do you just have someone sorting through your ROs and pulling the clients out manually? Also, what are your road blocks? My personal one is getting my advisors to input the correct key words on a regular basis. Yes, we all know that is how they get paid, but you know what I’m talking about. Another key...Read post

  • Why Dealers Should Say "NO" to Manufacturer Reward and Pre-Paid Maintenance Programs

    On the surface, manufacturer reward and pre-paid maintenance   programs seem like a great idea to many dealers. They’re intended to increase customer loyalty and visits to the service department, thereby providing repeat business and driving revenue. Take a closer look at OEM programs and you’ll find that not only do theynot provide much in the way of benefits – but they really don’t benefit the dealer at all. Here’s why you should be saying “NO” to OEM reward and PPM programs and “YES” to developing dealer-centric plans of your own.   Manufacturer’s reward and PPM plans are not seamless and they are generic.   Obviously, manufacturers are casting a wide net when developing reward and maintenance plans: They have to appeal to a huge existing and potential customer base. It’s all about the numbers with OEM programs to attract new prospects and encourage repeat purchases. It’s not possible for them to develop robust, effective programs based on specific ...Read post

  • In Praise of a Balanced #AutoMarketing Strategy (It's about more than your website)

    I’ve made people that I actually like and respect very angry with me because I’ve questioned their belief system. No, not their religion; their belief that developing their primary website – at the expense of almost all other digital marketing – is a laudable goal. They even have data to back up the argument, but I will argue that their analysis of the data is fundamentally flawed for a couple of very important reasons – Reason Number One – Automotive is not ecommerce. They analyzie the data as if they were analyzing an ecommerce site and that will inherently lead them astray. Let’s look at the ecommerce model for moment; everything must eventually funnel into the primary website to sell the product – to gain the conversion. With automotive that is not the case. With automotive, everything must eventually funnel into the physical dealership – not the digital one. Let’s face it, we’ve been talking about the website as being the ‘Digital Showroom’ for so long t...Read post