Where Have All the Websites Gone?
As authoritative websites with rich content rise to the top of search results, many once-popular sites have dropped from view entirely. This isn’t just because they’ve been out-competed by other sites: These shallow websites have actually been penalized by Google to keep them out of the top search results. In effect, sites that are over-optimized suffer from the effects of negative SEO.
If your website has recently suffered a severe drop in page rank, it may be due to Google penalties. These penalties might be due to the content of your page itself, but they could also be caused by the backlinks leading to your page. If poor-quality sites all link back to a certain page, that page will suffer a loss of rank.
This means that a site that was perfectly optimized a few years ago might now be practically invisible. Even worse, many so-called SEO experts are still encouraging old methods like automated backlink generation and spun article content, so you could end up paying for help only to see your rank drop instead of rise.