Now that the Google OOP (Over Optimization Penalty) has hit everyone that it will, at least so far as existing content goes, SEOs have had a little bit of a chance to get an idea of how it is working. The immediate results seem to indicate that the penalty is fairly severe. Some returns have shown a loss of as much as 4 pages going from page 1 to 5 due to the OOP, while in other cases it has been slightly less sever showing a loss of only several positions. Without doubt, working around these changes will be a challenge for SEOs in the coming months.
The biggest problem many sites are suffering from is too many ads above the fold – which is a fairly easy fix if you are adept at re-engineering the layout of your pages, but time consuming. The second biggest problem initially appears to be content that is over optimized in regard to keyword stuffing. This is a bit trickier to fix because it requires re-writing what could be a significant amount of content. Otherwise, the penalty also sees to have encompassed another range of content that is pegged as lower quality.
Webmasters need to rely on the guidance of their SEOs at this time – we didn’t even get into the issue of backlinks that is still being sorted out to get a clearer picture of what is happening. SEO copywriters will be in demand right now because a lot of content will need to be re-written to meet specific denisities that are known to be within the safe range of the OOP. Needless to say, Google has once again turned SEO on it’s ear.