Dealing With A Pure Spam Penalty From Google

This is one of the worst messages you will ever get as a webmaster of a website. Google has found something they do not like on your website and have decided to issue a penalty as a way to punish you for this bad behavior. Getting over a pure spam penalty from Google can be quite difficult, it depends on the scenario. Here is what you need to do.

pure spam penalty from google
Image of a pure spam penalty visible from the Google search console

How to Remove a Pure Spam Penalty

Google is generally quite nice in scenarios where you have been punished for this. You have been found in violation of their guidelines, but they often allow you to remove the offending material from your website and in return they will undo the penalty. So the good news here is that it is possible to remove a pure spam penalty.

When you get a pure spam penalty, you will also have been given a URL or a wildcard of URLs that the offending content can be found on. You need to identify exactly what the issue is here. The content will need to be removed right away.

Sometimes the issue may be one single URL. The problem is that many other pages on the site are connecting to it. You need to eradicate all traces of the offending URL.

Getting the Penalty Removed

Now for the important part, getting the penalty removed. You can easily do this from your search console dashboard. The penalty itself will give you instructions on how to alert Google that the changes have been made. The hardest part here is making sure you have done as they have asked. If you haven’t resolved the underlying problem, you will be wasting a lot of time.

Once you have submitted the penalty to be reviewed, you will have to wait a period of time for Google to validate. This is going to be a tough wait if the penalty has resulted in a large number of pages on your site being blocked from search engine results.

How Long Does it take for a Pure Spam Penalty to be Removed

The time it takes to fix this depends on how much of your site has been impacted. If a large number of pages on your site have been hit by this penalty, it may take some time to be undone. Someone will have to validate everything for you to ensure the problem is indeed resolved. If it is not, you could wait two weeks only to have the request sent back to you. That means another two weeks of waiting!

If you have a single url impacted by this problem, fixing it should only take a few days. Your request will be sent into a queue and hopefully someone from Google will feel the issue is gone and lift the manual penalty for you.