I recently had a request by a user asking the following question: How do you prevent negative SEO from happening to a website? The short answer is that you can’t. If someone is really motivated, and they have the resources, they will launch negative SEO campaigns against your website. However, there are a few things you can do to minimize the impact and the damage.
What is negative SEO?
Negative SEO is the process in which usually an online business launches a campaign to hurt the rankings of a competitor website. Currently the primary way in which this is done is by having undesirable websites such as gambling sites, pornographic sites, insurance websites, and an array of other spammy low quality websites link back to yours in an attempt to trick Google into thinking your website is low quality, because it only associates with low-quality websites, which are the majority of the links that it gets anyways, with inappropriate anchor text to describe what your webpage is all about.
Treatment for negative SEO
The best way to help combat negative SEO is by using free and paid online sass tools such as Ahrefs and SEMRUSH, in conjunction with Google Search Console to manually check some of the backlinks that are pointing to your website, and taking the time to compile a list of sites that appear undesirable and of low quality, so that they can be disavowed, and tell Google not to count those backlinks for the website.
Negative Google, Facebook, and Yelp reviews are another form of negative SEO attack by online competition. Usually, they will set up a fake account and leave a negative review of the business. You don’t need to address every single comment review you get for your website; however, you should respond to every negative comment, and address it on the spot, so your potential clients know you do care about your business.
You can’t really stop a negative SEO attack from happening; however, there are things you can do to help you stay alert and ready to combat this issue when it arises. Constantly check your backlink profiles for unnatural links, and disavow the links from low quality and nonrelevant websites that add no real value. Also, make sure you address every negative Google review that is left, this is a form of combating negative SEO.