Google Spam Identified for Business Insurance Keyword
In reviewing some keywords today in Google, we stumbled upon a highly questionable website showing up in the #1 position for business insurance“. We check this keyword on a pretty regular basis and have slowly seen the following site creeping up over the past 2 months, but a #1 ranking is ridiculous – especially after we detail this website’s past.
You can view the results of the query for “business insurance” here or you can just check it yourself (And no, I won’t link to the site).
At the time of this writing, thecagetattoostudio.com was ranking #1 in Google for the keyword “business insurance”. The domain has nothing to do with business or insurance as you can obviously see.
The results immediately puzzled us, especially considering that there are close to 10 million results for the keyword and it is in a highly competitive industry. Of course, we had a few ideas in regards to how they were able to accomplish this and several of them were verified.
So how did they get this high profile ranking… let us take a look at some of the things we know:
- The domain had expired earlier this year and was purchased by an unknown owner.
- The domain was actually used for a tattoo shop website until it expired. The original site can still be viewed at archive.org.
- The domain has over 3,000 links reported from Yahoo Site Explorer.
- An aggressive & questionable linking campaign was initiated almost immediately after purchase, including a lot of paid links.
- Most of the incoming links appear to be from Russian (.ru extension domains) and appear to be of the paid variety. The sites are entirely in Russian aside from the select few “paid links” in the sidebars. The link to thecagetattoostudio.com are in English and utilize one of their primary keyword targets.
- The domain is also hosted on a server with 2 other domains that are similar – the topic of the website does not match with the domain name.
- The site is nothing more than an affiliate site to generate insurance leads for another site.
- The site is only made up of 2 “business insurance” related pages. All others showing up in a “site:” search are leftover from the tattoo shop’s site.
It would appear from the outside that this is clearly a spamming attempt at Google, but you wonder if they know about it and/or if they can do anything.
So in summary, a 2-page, 3-month old, tattoo-based domain w/ a high percentage of paid links from Russian websites is ranked #1 for a super-competitive keyword in Google’s search results.
Has anyone seen a similar situation as this?