Negative SEO is a very real problem for anyone who has been victimized by it. Watching your website rankings that you've fought so hard for tank nearly overnight is not only heartbreaking, but a real financial pain as well.
So, you might ask, what does a negative SEO attack look like? Some common ways an evil webmaster may try and take you down includes tactics like creating tons of links to your pages, using spam keywords or even all of your page's primary keywords. (Google sees this as link manipulation) This may also directly hack into your server, and even impersonate you online in social media. In order to help you be prepared for the fight against negative SEO, we've included 5 ways you can be aware of what's going on with your site.
5 Strategies to prevent Negative SEO
Use alerts – One of the best features of Google Webmaster tools is it can send you email alerts whenever your site is under different kinds of attacks, such as if you have a malware problem, pages are not indexed and more.
Keep an eye on your backlinks – If all of the sudden you notice a huge spike in backlinks, especially if you haven't actively been seeking them, suspect something is in progress. Sites like Monitor Backlinks can be a huge help here.
Keep an ear open for social media mentions – Track any mentions of you or your brand in social media, as you can be getting trashed and before long, are in full reputation management mode. Sites like Mention.net can send you alerts for these.
Check for duplicate content – An old school technique used by people set on harming your SEO is copying your content and posting it all over the Web. Having the same content everywhere you look on the Web is an easy way incur a Google site penalty.
Secure your site – Be sure you have a secure installation. This is partly your host's and partly your responsibility, but you really don't want someone getting access. If you are running WordPress, this is doubly true, as it is a hacker's playground.