Case Study: How Penguin 4.0 Has Affected Anchor Text Optimization

Matt Diggity
Matt Diggity is a full time SEO specializing in affiliate website ranking for both micro-niche sites and medium-level authority sites. Learn more about Matt at DiggityMarketing.com.

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    Penguin’s latest 4.0 release shook-up the SERPs of many niches by adjusting their average anchor text ratios.  In this article, I will showcase 5 case studies that were affected by this update.  You’ll see the role that anchor text optimization played in their SERP displacements and the exact steps that were taken to recover their rankings.

    Penguin Then and Now

    On September 23, 2016 the face of SEO was changed as Google released the always-running version of the Penguin algorithm:  Version 4.0.

    While many webmasters rejoiced as we now had a 24/7 police officer available to punish our naughty competitors, others were hit with ranking changes… and not all good.

    Penguin was originally designed to help eliminate spam by attempting to identify unnatural offsite SEO signals.

    Namely...

    • The distribution of anchor text sent to a given page should look natural (more on this later).
    • The quality of link sources linking to a page should be high.

    The interesting thing about Penguin is that historically it was run periodically:

    • Penguin 1.0 - April 24, 2012
    • Penguin 1.1 - May 26, 2012
    • Penguin 1.2 - October 5, 2012
    • Penguin 2.0 - May 22, 2013
    • Penguin 2.1 - October 4, 2013
    • Penguin 3.0 - October 17, 2014
    • (Current version) Penguin 4.0 - September 23, 2016

    Essentially, there would be huge gaps (sometimes longer than a year), where Penguin wouldn’t run and people would be able to get away with (for lack of a better word) murder, using overly-aggressive anchor text and poor quality links.

    That is, until Penguin swung back around and it was time to pay the price.

    The biggest gap we have seen has been between our current Penguin release 4.0 and the previous 3.0 release with roughly a two year timespan between iterations.

    So what has actually happened in this two year gap?

    Niche Specific Target Anchor Text

    Offsite optimization essentially boils down to how natural the incoming anchor text looks for a given web page while still being optimized for the intended keywords.

    When trying to optimize for Google (or any other search engine for that matter), you could say we’re playing poker with our competition, but we can see their hands.

    Let me explain…

    Many people try to decide how to optimize their anchor text by using “rules of thumb” based on what they might think looks like an average breakdown of anchor types.

    Typically it might look something like this:

    • Target: 10%
    • LSI: 10%
    • URL: 25%
    • Brand: 25%
    • Topic: 20%
    • Misc: 10%

    These numbers are completely hypothetical and more often than not, do not nearly represent your competition’s anchor distribution - which has already gotten them to #1.

    So instead of guessing, simply reverse engineer the top ranking websites, and determine an average anchor text distribution for the niche.

    When the cat’s gone away, the mice come out to play

    As mentioned earlier, Penguin is the policeman that looks at anchor text and wreaks havoc on the perpetrators of its rules.  For roughly two years, Penguin was on sabbatical.

    That’s a long time in the evolution of the SERP.

    For two years, the average anchor text distributions for niches were slowly changed over time.

    More often than not, they were becoming more aggressive as people were sneaking in the SERPs with high proportions of target anchor text.

    It was very 2010 SEO, but hey, it worked.

    So what has happened now that Penguin is back and running 24/7?

    It’s been a few months since Penguin 4.0 has released and the dust has settled, so let’s take a look at how this has changed offsite anchor text optimization.

    In this case study, I will examine 5 niches and will be taking a look at how the ideal anchor text distribution for a given niche has changed in a pre-and-post-Penguin 4.0 environment.

    These niches each contain live ranking websites that we manage at my company LeadSpring.  The test suite includes both affiliate sites of varying sizes (including a 1000+ page sample) and a local search website.

    Test Methodology: Determining the Niche-specific Target Anchor Text

    I’ll be doing a comparison of each niche’s average anchor text distribution before and after Penguin 4.0.

    The methodology can be summarized as follows…

    Step 1. Download anchor text data for the website in position #1 from Ahrefs Site Explorer

    Example: Ketogenic Diet

    Ahrefs Site Exploer Anchors Report
    Step 2. Categorize each anchor by # of referring domains and type
    anchors categorized
    Step 3. Create a pie chart of the anchor text distribution breakdown
    ketogenic pie

    Step 4. Repeat for sites #2-5
    Note: for sites that are hiding backlinks, I simply skipped over them for the purpose of this study.

    Step 5. Compute the average of sites #1-5 to determine the average anchor distribution for the niche
    The niche-specific target anchor text was then compared before and after Penguin 4.0’s release date.

    keto average

    Case Study 1: High Competition Affiliate Niche in the Home Improvement Space

    case 1

    SERP Reaction after Penguin Rollout

    This niche was shaken up pretty hard when Penguin eventually rolled out to this niche on October 29th, 2016.

    Our site was ranking steady at #1 for the previous 2 months and immediately took a plummet to #6 where it stayed for a few weeks while we diagnosed the issue.

    The new site that replaced ours was actually previously sitting at #5.  Sites that were previously at slots #3 and #4 vanished from page 1 entirely.

    By comparing the niche-specific anchor text distribution averages before and after the rollout, some definite patterns started to emerge.

    • A huge decrease in the average number of target anchors: -15%
    • Slight increase in the use of LSI synonyms: +4%
    • Brand + URL keywords increased significantly: +8%
    • Slight increase in topic anchors: +3%

    Diagnosis

    We can see that this SERP result was in desperate need of a Penguin visit.

    Websites, including ours, were getting away with aggressive 52% target anchor text for over a year.  I honestly wasn’t surprised when we tanked.

    Sites previously occupying #3 and #4, which I mentioned earlier were knocked off of page 1 entirely, had target anchor text ratios of 62% and 68%, respectively.  These two bad boys were largely responsible for throwing off the previous distribution’s average.

    Once Penguin stopped by, this aggression was diluted in favor of LSI, brand and URL anchors.

    We followed suit by removing our aggressive anchors from the links we had access to and replacing them with new LSI, brand and URL links. 

    Case Study 2: Foreign Affiliate (Brazil) in the Health and Wellness Space

    case 2

    SERP Reaction after Penguin Rollout

    Penguin caught up to this niche late in the roll out (November 13, 2016).

    We were, quite frankly, extremely surprised to see any fluctuations in this niche as the niche-specific anchor text distribution was well-rounded before the roll out.

    Personally, I like to push the envelope when it comes to optimization, but for this niche I was on my best behavior.

    Once Penguin hit, our site moved from #2 to #4 and the sites that moved up had one huge commonality: a high amount of local citations.

    Diagnosis

    We’ve diagnosed this issue to being a cause-and-effect relationship between two algorithms.

    The Google.com.br engine had increased the need for locally relevant domains.  Namely, domains with the .com.br TLD extension as well as being in the Portuguese language.

    Two newcomers to the top 5 results both had extremely heavy usage of business citations in their homepage profiles.  These citations were providing both local relevance and language relevance simultaneously.

    One company had 13 business citations and the other had 19 – both very high numbers for Brazil.

    As a result, the average breakdown for the niche saw a 15% increase in URL anchors (the anchor type that is most commonly used in a business directory link).

    Our play: Copy what worked.

    We had our team go out and build 20 business citations and indexed those bad boys immediately.

    Case Study 3: Medium Competition Affiliate Niche in the Beauty Space

    case 3

    SERP Reaction after Penguin Rollout

    Once Penguin rolled out to this niche, we actually experienced an increase in rankings.  Win.

    The homepage of our partial match domain (PMD) in the women’s beauty niche was ranked #6 for the main keyword.  Post-update, we shot up to #2.

    This was particularly surprising as we felt we were highly over-optimized for this niche with 6% target anchor text, while the niche was asking for 3%

    Diagnosis

    As mentioned earlier, Penguin is a two-part algorithm.

    The first aspect checks a backlink profile’s anchor distribution for anomalies.

    The second checks for low quality links.

    In this niche, previously we noticed that the top 2 – 4 slots had exhibited a large amount of low quality blog comments as exhibited by the Ahrefs reports.  Many of these referring URLs had in excess of 50 out bound links, sharing comments with “ugg boots”, “louis vutton bags” and other usual suspects in the spam space.

    Once Penguin moved out slots 2-4 and kicked them back to page 3 and beyond, we were left with a new top 5 that had clean links.

    This new top 5 had a significant decrease in the NA anchor category (-22%) which can be attributed to the loss of “author name” links which are commonly filled out in blog comments.

    In addition, the new top 5 happened to have more aggressive anchors than before, which suited our homepage quite well.

    Case Study 4: Medium Competition Affiliate Niche in the Beauty Space (Inner-page of Case Study 3)

    case 4

    SERP Reaction after Penguin Rollout

    The interesting thing about Penguin 4.0 is that it’s applied granularly, on a page-per-page basis.

    This search associated with this inner page of Case Study #3 has a completely different anchor text distribution from the homepage, before and after the roll out.

    In fact, Penguin caught up to this page much later than the homepage (October 27, 2016 vs. October 2, 2016, respectively).

    This particular search is your typical Amazon affiliate “<product> review” keyword.  We were sitting at #3 and dropped down to #7 after the algorithm paid its visit.

    We found 3 new players that jumped into this niche’s top 5:

    If you’re doing affiliate SEO, then you’ll know that this is pretty bad news.  Authority sites of this magnitude are difficult to topple.

    Diagnosis

    As can be seen from the pie charts, the anchor categories that were affected the most were:

    • Target anchors: -19%
    • Brand: +23%

    This is very typical when you have these types of authority sites in your niche. People link to Amazon with brand anchors like “Amazon”, “at Amazon” or “on Amazon”.

    Because we are using a partial match domain (PMD), we don’t necessarily get a brand anchor.  The best we can do is to try to imitate this 23% increase by substituting in naked URL anchors.

    Case Study 5: Local Search in the Health and Wellness Space

    case 5

    SERP Reaction after Penguin Rollout

    This case study, followed a very similar pattern to case study #1, despite this niche being locally-based and the latter being national search affiliate.

    Before Penguin 4.0, we had been #2 and we dropped down to #10 on November 5, 2016.

    Key changes:

    • A large decrease in the average number of target anchors: -36%
    • Slight increase in the use of LSI synonyms: +8%
    • Brand + URL keywords increased significantly: +14%

    Diagnosis

    While our site completely tanked after this update, it actually helped answer a long outstanding question we’ve had about this niche’s optimization parameters.

    The site we’re trying to rank is a yoga studio.  We’ll call the brand “Prana Yoga” for purpose of illustration.  We were trying to rank for the keyword “<city> yoga”.

    Most sites in our niche, ourselves included, were using a major of what we believed to be brand anchors:

    • “Prana Yoga”
    • “Prana Yoga Studio”
    • “visit Prana Yoga”

    The sites that weren’t using “yoga” in their branded anchors, received huge rewards in this update and the folks like us were kicked off the top 5.

    We now see that anchors like ones we were using should have been considered target anchors since they contained the word “yoga” in them and are essentially longtails.

    Our game plan: removal of anchors and dilution with simply “Prana” anchors.

    Results

    After adjusting the anchor text ratios for each of our sites, we found that we had an 80% (4 of 5) success ratio at recovering each niche.

    We spaced out the anchor removals and replacement over the course of 2-6 weeks (depending on how many anchors needed to be adjusted) and found that the average response time was 16.4 days from the time the last anchor was corrected until SERP recovery.

    We’re still working on that final testcase (#4) that hasn’t recovered.  Our hypothesis is that we might have been “checkmate’d” since we cannot follow suit with the niche’s demand for more brand anchors since we’re a PMD.

    You win some, you lose some.

    We are considering redirecting a branded domain in this same niche to this URL, but it’s such a long shot that it’s probably not worth the effort.  Either way, I will report back with the results.

    What to do if you were affected by Penguin 4.0

    First things first, figure out which aspect of Penguin might have caused your downfall.

    Low quality links

    Do a complete audit of the incoming links to your site.

    Are these links are coming from trusted resources?

    Are they coming from relevant sites?

    If not, either get them removed or break out the disavow tool.

    Unnatural Anchor Text

    If you’re getting your links from trusted sources, it’s likely that anchor text is the culprit.

    At this point you need to assess what the niche-specific target anchor text distribution is currently expecting for your keywords.

    Download your competitors anchor text with a backlink crawler tool like Ahrefs.  Sort these anchors into categories and come up with the niche-specific average.

    Once you have a clear eye on the target, it’s time to start modifying your distribution to follow suit.

    This might involve diluting your distribution by earning more URL anchors.  If this is the case, a little business citation work can save the day.

    If you need to reduce the density of your target anchor texts, I recommend getting them removed by contacting the owner of the referring domains.  Don’t bother with getting the anchor texts changed within existing articles.

    As you can see, this Penguin update is highly anchor-focused.  Based on the average of these 5 case-studies, target anchor text usage dropped by 15% while “pillow” (Brand/URL/topic/misc) anchor usage increased by the same amount.

    The great thing about the live-version of the algorithm is that recovery can be swift if a proper anchor text diagnosis is made and applied to your own site.

    Editor's note
    Lasse Nielsen from Skjoldby & Co shared a spreadsheet with us, which can easily create very similar pie-charts for anchor text distribution. It will come in really handy for visualization and for reporting.

    You just need an Ahrefs account and Microsoft Excel installed.

    You can download the file here.

    Nick Churick
    Matt Diggity
    Matt Diggity is a full time SEO specializing in affiliate website ranking for both micro-niche sites and medium-level authority sites. Learn more about Matt at DiggityMarketing.com.

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    • Serdar Erinc

      Great article, Matt. Thanks for sharing.

    • Yousef Zatari

      Thanks Matt.

      What if the competitior moved to ssl, Should I analyses http + https or just the https?

      • Matt Diggity

        Assume that your competitor setup their forwarding correctly. You’d need to consider both.

    • Tyler

      This is awesome Matt. I’ve read your post on figuring out the ratios for your niche, and this seems like a simple but effective way to recover from a ranking drop.

      Quick question. What if you’re an affiliate who ranks largely for brand terms. As such, the main brand always occupies the top 1–4 results. In my mind, the brand will always rank above affiliates. So should I just look at the top 5 affiliates underneath the brand? Or include the brand in the top 5?

      Taking this one step further, it’s been frustrating to see the brand occupy more spots over the last year. We used to be #2, but have been pushed to #4 or #5 as the brand has gotten more of its pages in the top results. Is this an opportunity to get above some of the #2–4 brand results? Or will the brand always win for brand terms, regardless of anchor text?

      Thanks!

      • Matt Diggity

        Good question.

        I don’t have much experience in ranking above super-brand’s like “Nike” and so forth. Instead, I’m usually up against brands of medium popularity affiliate products that can easily be overpassed.

        Nonetheless, I indeed count them in my anchor text calculations.

        • Francis

          Hey Matt, great follow up to your original article on this topic! Just to take Tyler’s question a bit further. For branded searches where the homepage plus 1 — 2 inner pages from the main brand are coming up, but the inner pages are not linked too as far as AHREFS can see (and I assume are showing up just because of what google thinks is the user intent of the search), do they still get included in the top 5 analysis? Also, why analyse the top 5 as opposed to the top 10? Thanks!

          • Matt Diggity

            Usually when a site ranks multiple URLs of a single domain, it’s because there’s not much else better to rank. Just look at the #1 site in this case. 

    • Hey Matt,

      another awesome read from you — the amount of advanced SEO tactics I’ve learnt from you has been immense and I’m really glad I’ve stumbled across your stuff. This is surely something to keep in mind when doing link-building going forward. Sometimes, when doing outreach it’s not as easy to be in control of the anchor links, I’m usually quite thankful I got the link in the first place.

      As with regards to diagnosing a penalty, how do you actually determine the algorithmic reason a site got hit? It feels quite hit and miss to me, just want to be sure I’m not barking up the wrong tree…

      Cheers
      David

      • Matt Diggity

        You’re right. Hit and miss is a good way to describe it. But there’s a bit giveaway with the current penalty landscape: Penguin hits you on a per-page basis. If your whole site was hit, then its not likely Penguin.

    • Steve Goldberg

      Matt, awesome article.

      Two of my sites are experiencing some interesting ranking changes I’m not sure I’ve accurately diagnosed.

      Site is a till ranked #1 for “product name review”. Was ranked #4 for “product name” but just dropped to #78 the other day.

      I recently did some more link building to this inner page and the supporting silo articles, so is it safe to say this is just a dance? Or is the culprit anchor ratios?

      • Matt Diggity

        Definitely give it some time.

    • Great review Matt. Just to make sure (as i’m a little boy on SEO), what do you mean as “business citations” in the second case study? Thanks!!!

      • Matt Diggity

        Yelp, yellow pages, etc

    • Zak Gottlieb

      Hey Matt. Re. your hypothesis about why #4 hasn’t recovered. Are you certain “brand anchors” are an actual category taken into account by Google? Would it not make more sense for them to lump these with “generic anchors” or something to that effect, since they have the same diluting effect? I’ve never seen any evidence that they don’t, but perhaps you’ve studied this specifically.

      • Zak Gottlieb

        p.s. I did leave another comment a moment ago, but switched it out 🙂

      • Matt Diggity

        A good questiom that I’m currently exploring through testing. 

        • Zak Gottlieb

          Alright, thank you. Would love to know the results when you get’em!

    • Hey Matt, Great Article. I found it much connected to your blog post on How You Should Choose Anchor Text. I think those who want better understanding, must read that particular post to get most out of this post.

    • BK Singha

      Thanks Matt. This is a great article!

      I have one question. Will it affect my site’s ranking or will I lose backlinkss if I install an SSL certificate to my site? I mean if I move to HTTPS from HTTP?

      • Matt Diggity

        Not if done correctly. There many posts on this topic, but if you’re unsure, hire a Dev. 

        • BK Singha

          Thanks 🙂

    • Mark Stanwyck

      Another good one. Thanks a lot!

      • Matt Diggity

        Thanks for reading, Mark. 

    • Mando Swiss

      Thanks for the great post Matt,

      Would really apreciate it if you can share your insights on the following two questions.

      The anchor diversity is required for the root domain only or it should be applied in each url within the domain?

      If suddenly your site went from 2nd or 3rd position on the first page to the second page of Google, how long would you wait before assuming its a Penguin update rather than simply a Google dance?

      • Matt Diggity

        1) Anchor text diversity applies on a per-page basis.
        2) I would look more at the timing of it all. Penguin is rolled out and live for months now. 

    • Matt Diggity

      Gracias, Roberto.

    • Norman Paradis

      Great information Matt. Just to clarify, if you have too many target anchor text links can you simply rename them to just the brand or the url.? For example in case # 5 could you not ask the site owner to change the link from Prana yoga to just Prana? Thanks

      • Matt Diggity

        In my humble opinion, anchor changes are a dead giveaway that you’re in charge of your links. That said, people get away with it everyday.

    • Thanks Matt!

      • Matt Diggity

        Welcome, Akash.

    • Hi Matt,

      Thanks for the great article. You wrote: 

      Step 4. Repeat for sites #2–5
      Note: for sites that are hiding backlinks, I simply skipped over them for the purpose of this study.”

      How do you know if a site is “hiding backlinks”?

      Thanks.

      • Matt Diggity

        PBN users will hide backlinks. If people are ranking with a small number of links, but you know that a site of their authority would require more, it’s safe to assume they’re hiding links. 

    • Pedro Duarte

      Great, nice one Matt! Thanks for sharing!

      • Matt Diggity

        Thanks, Pedro.

    • Great article.

      How do you define “Topic” and “LSI”? How are they different from each other?

      • Matt Diggity

        Let’s use an example.
        Target = dog training
        Topic = pets
        LSI = canine obedience

    • Justin Morgan

      Matt, congratulations on getting published on ahrefs blog! Moz used to be the singular blog to get published on, but I’d say ahrefs is taking the center podium, thanks to great content like this. 

      I look forward to publishing here in upcoming months, myself.

      My question is whether or not you’ve made observations on PMD with (“web design by:” style) site wide footers. Have you seen partial match (branded) anchor text from legit client websites being a positive or negative in a post-Penguin 4 world?

      I ask because it appears this is the culprit for some penguin dropoff.

      I’m wondering if you think changing the anchor text (slowly) to an abbreviation or logo/image is advisable, or at least a low-risk testing maneuver. I’m talking about your comment that changing anchor text shows manipulation/control.

      Keep up the great work, Matt! Talk soon!

      • Matt Diggity

        Honestly, I hardly ever run into sitewide footers anymore. Either way, I’m only counting one anchor per referring domain. Hope this helps. 

    • Hello!

      Thank you for the information!

      If you have your own links, like private pbn, access to the links,etc its better to change the link in current posts(e.g. Remove the link and add it 3–4 paragraphs later with new anchor) or delete the whole post and a new one ? Is it bad to change just the anchor — you will raise red flag? Or its better a new article?

      • Matt Diggity

        I always delete and replace. 

    • Hi Matt,

      Good article.I think I’ve seen you take in count also nofollow anchors. Am I right?

      If yes, why?

      Thank you

      • Matt Diggity

        When it comes to optimization, an anchor is an anchor. 

    • Scott Clarke

      Hey Matt,

      Awesome article once again.

      Quick question:
      Literally all top 10 competitors have hidden their backlinks. How would you proceed?

      - Affiliate product niche

      • How does someone hide their backlinks?

        • +1, this is the first time I’m hearing about this! Is it actually possible to hide backlinks?

        • Matt Diggity

          Not sure if this is the right place to give instructions on how to block ahrefs from crawling. 🙂

      • Matt Diggity

        There’s always ways to reverse engineer a website’s links, but this is beyond the scope of this discussion. I’ll follow up sometime with a guide.

    • Mike

      Hey bud,
      Any experience with EMD’s and how to compensate for “brand” anchors.
      I.e. if the profiles call for 25% brand, can you swap them out with URL/generic instead? (Since the brand would be a keyword and would throw off the ratios).
      I’m trying it out right now but just curious if you had experience with it..

      • Matt Diggity

        Exactly. I do a 1-to-1 swap of brand for URL anchors.

    • Super interesting!

    • Dmytro Lyalyuk

      Hi Matt, thanks for this useful information.

      I have a question:
      Should I check every of the top5 or topN websites including wikipedia and other monsters or I should just focus on my competitors?
      I mean that for the “ketogenic diet” keyword which obviously has informational intent we should check every website from the top5. But what about mixed intent (informational or commercial) keywords like “wi-fi routers”? So there will be a couple of eCommerce websites, a couple of review articles and for example an article with general information about wi-fi routers. The anchor-text distribution different types of websites will be completely different.
      Let’s consider my website is eCommerce website that sells wi-fi routers. Should I check every top5 websites for this keyword or just check every eCommerce site in Google’s top?

      • Matt Diggity

        Try to compare yourself against other sites of similar authority. 

    • Zak Gottlieb

      Hey again Matt, sorry if this is a dumb question: but are these anchor analyses / pie charts being done on the page level or for the site as a whole? 

      If I’m trying to rank my home page for “green kittens,” then presumably it’s only valuable to analyse all of my competitors’ “green kitten” pages as well, vs. their entire sites? 

      Thanks for the help.

      • Matt Diggity

        Per-page.

        • Zak Gottlieb

          Thank you Matt.

    • Thanks for this great post, Matt. I think it’s a bad idea to stick with the same anchor text distribution ratio. Every site should follow different ratio based on the naturality of the niche. 

      What do you say about it, Matt, that if you want to know the good anchor distribution ratio of your niche, go to Majestic, put the link of your top competitor, then analyse the anchor text ratio graph, then do the same or somewhat a little different. Using common sense is critical in this regard.

    • Thanks for this great post,@matt_diggity:disqus. I think it’s a bad idea to stick with the same anchor text distribution ratio. Every site should follow different ratio based on the naturality of the niche. 

      What do you say about it, Matt, that if you want to know the good anchor distribution ratio of your niche, go to Majestic, put the link of your top competitor, then analyse the anchor text ratio graph, then do the same or somewhat a little different. Using common sense is critical in this regard.

      • Matt Diggity

        The top competitor is not enough. You don’t know if they’re “grandfathered” in there due to site age. Or perhaps they’ve disavowed a ton of links. An average will drown out that noise.

        • Thanks, Got it! 🙂

    • Hello Matt,

      How do you mean for “Brand”
      Is Brand means website name.

      • Matt Diggity

        That’s correct.… if the name doesn’t contain any target keywords.

        • Case1 Study: Brand 9%

          My website is crackcoupon and my targeted keyword is amazon india coupons, then brand is “CrackCoupon” or “Amazon”.

          • Matt Diggity

            You don’t get a brand anchor because you’re a partial match domain. 

    • Prabhakar G

      Hey Matt,

      Nice article, but I am little bit confused with the Keyword Types. I am in to Coupons industry.
      keyword: Target Store Promo Code
      My competitor has anchor texts like
      Target Store Coupons
      Target Store Coupon Codes
      Walmart Coupons
      Amazon Promo Codes
      Target Store Promo Code with 10% Off Coupon.. etc

      Please tel me, Should i consider the above all anchors as TYPE: Targets.

      What we need to look in the anchors considering as Type:Target, only the main term: Target Store or Promo Code, Coupons.

      Please guide me…

      • Matt Diggity

        The important thing is that you define a rule of what YOU believe to be a target anchor and you stick to it. My rule is: if an anchor has any single word of a target keyword phrase, it’s a target. 

        • Prabhakar G

          OK,Thanks Matt.. One More question Which tool is best to find out the spam backlinks and how to remove them.. Any post or information link will be helpful.

    • Mattijs

      Hi Matt,

      You state it isnt a problem to change anchor texts of links you have access to. Does this also applies for PBN links?

      Secondly, whats the maximum nummer of links that can be changed each day?

      Regards

    • Anchor differentiating is really important when we create the backlinks or else the google gonna kick the sites.

    • Dumb question: can you elaborate “business citations” ?

      • Matt Diggity

        Local directories. Yelp, Yellow Pages, etc.

    • Hi Matt,

      Thanks for the great article. You wrote:

    • Matt Diggity

      Hard to say without looking in detail. There’s likely many other factors involved outside anchor text.

    • Hey Matt,
      Thanks for this great article. I learned a lot here.
      Once again thank you 🙂

    • Very interesting