SEO and SEM for Russian search engines

More Yandex SEO penalties coming for link sellers

yandex-searchEarlier this week in their corporate blog [in Russian] Yandex announced yet another penalty that is about to hit low quality sites created for the purpose of selling links. More precisely, they promised to change the way AGS penalty works.

AGS penalty was initially introduced back in 2009, and from the very beginning was aimed a low quality sites. Usually AGS penalty hits sites with thin content, created either for selling links through link brokers or placing contextual advertising.

AGS penalty went through several modifications, the first one being AGS-13 and the last – AGS 40. If any of these versions were applied to a site, most of the site’s pages were removed from Yandex search index.

The newest version of AGS, however, will be a different kind of punishment. Instead of de-indexing the site, Yandex instead will lower its TIC (thematic index of citation) to 0.

The sites that have already been affected by AGS penalty, will also suffer from TIC reduction, but the de-indexed pages will return to the search index. These sites, however, will rank low until necessary actions are taken, and the links from these sites will not be able to influence organic rankings.

During the last few years Yandes has taken multiple actions against low quality sites – from penalties for thin content and excessive advertising to excluding paid links from the ranking formula for several verticals.

Anna Oshkalo

Anna is a blogger and online marketing consultant specializing in SEO and SEM for Russian search engines. To see more of Anna's posts, follow her on Twitter, or LinkedIn.

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4 Responses to “More Yandex SEO penalties coming for link sellers”

  1. […] More Yandex SEO penalties coming for link seller, Russian Search Tips […]

  2. Ana says:

    Hello, Anna.

    Thank you very much for all the information provided in your blog and for your useful tips! We are just starting to advertise on yandex and your blog is actually my main and only source of information (beside yandex website). Especially comparisons between google and yandex advertising platforms are very useful. Is there any way to subscribe to your newsletter (or you don’t send one)?

  3. Anna Oshkalo says:

    Hi Ana,

    Thank you for your kind words about my blog! Please feel free to let me know if there is any other PPC-related topics that you think should be covered. I don’t send newsletters at the moment (but perhaps I should :) )

  4. Ana says:

    I would appreciate if you could write some information about setting up a remarketing campaign on yandex direct. I understand we have to use yandex metrika counter/goal, but I still don’t understand well the keywords and bidding system. Which advertising strategy to use, why do I have to choose keywords, where do I set up bids – it seems like there are so many options (CPC for all phrases on content sites, CPC for particular keyword, CPC for Criterion: Remarketing…)

    Thank you very much!

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