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How a High Spam Score Can Hurt Your Business Real Bad

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Before we get started on how a high spam score can hurt your business, you should know what a spam score is and what does it determine?

According to Moz, a spam score indicates the percentage of backlinks to your website that has either been penalized by Google or banned from its database.

High Spam Score

So, backlinks are like votes. Based on these votes, search engine algorithms such as Google determine good websites for users vs. those they should avoid.

Now, if your website has a high spam score, then there is a chance that Google will flag your website and push it down the ranks. So, your website might no longer appear on the top search results page (SERP). This will affect your search traffic severely.

This is technically why a high spam score is terrible for your business. This article shall briefly discuss an incident regarding high spam scores and how a high spam score can hurt your business.

The Incident

About a year ago, we landed a client who could not determine why his business was not yielding expected returns.

Well, he knew that it had something to do with SEO but failed to figure out what it was. The client had spent substantial money to rank his pages, but Google would not heed the efforts.

Search engines consider spammy sites unhelpful

It was miserable, as our client’s product line was high on demand. There was no question about product quality as well. When we started working for the client, we ran a site audit and discovered the issue. The site had a spam score of 54%!

Google and other search engines are not generous towards websites with high spam scores.

Search engines consider spammy sites unhelpful for their users and don’t display content from such sites on top result pages. That’s why it’s a problem you must solve as soon as possible.

Let’s dive a bit deeper into the issue.

Reasons Behind a High Spam Score

There are many reasons why a high spam score may occur, but I will briefly explain the major ones.

1. Bad Link Building

One of the essential strategies to rank your site’s pages is to build good-quality backlinks. If you skip the ‘good’ part and only focus on ‘link building,’ you invite a horrible spam score.

Search engines have become way more advanced than before, and irrelevant links from low-quality websites will do more harm than good.


So, what constitutes a low-quality website? A few things: below-standard content, low domain authority, slow page speed, irrelevant niche, and last but not least, high spam score (read more about it here)!

You heard it right! You should not be getting links from websites that already have high spam scores. You’ll get some share from their spam scores if you do so.

The number of links you build is not the only factor here. It is also vital to build links from different authority sites. Search engines will consider it spam if you build too many links from the same site.

2. Low-Quality Content

The main objective of search engines like Google is to give their users the best possible experience. How does that happen?

If a user searches something and finds pages that fulfill the objective of their search query, then the user gets satisfied. To ensure that, search engines aim to rank helpful pages.

Low quality content

If your site’s content does not match the high standards set by search engines, link building will not help you if you target a keyword, write articles that repeatedly mention that keyword, and forget about getting ranked. Instead, your site’s content, as well as the site itself, will be flagged as spammy.

Even if you somehow trick search engines into ranking your low-quality content, it won’t sustain for too long. Readers will simply leave your site right after a few seconds of clicking the link. This will result in a high bounce rate, contributing to your site’s spam score.

Also, if your site contains duplicate content, be prepared for a high spam score. Copying someone else’s content may lead to harsh penalties from search engines, and trust me, these are difficult to recover from.

3. Black Hat SEO

Don’t trust someone if they promise to bring you tons of traffic overnight. They likely apply black hat SEO techniques.

Black Hat SEO

I know, it’s a broad term, but in brief, black hat SEO stands for practices that try to con the search engines into ranking a page even if it does not have good quality relevant content.

These practices include but are not limited to content automation, keyword stuffing, hidden links or text, doorway pages, cloaking, link manipulation, and sneaky redirects.

How A High Spam Score Hurts Your Business

The first harm caused by a high spam score is pretty obvious. When your targeted audience searches their queries, your site won’t be displayed on the first result pages they see.

This means little to no traffic from search engines. Search engines are very strict in ranking sites with high spam scores. Even spending tons of advertising money will not generate a steady traffic flow if the spam score is high.

High Spam Score

Secondly, if you have a high spam score, there is something wrong with your site in the first place. Probably your site’s pages take forever to load, or the quality of your site’s content is so bad that no one wants to read them.

In cases like these, the spam score is just an indication that your site is not helpful for search engine users. So, why would someone come to pages that are not helpful to them? Again, no traffic, no sale.

Business Reputation

Thirdly, a high spam score is horrible for your business reputation. Your business website is like your online storefront. Now compare it with a brick-and-mortar storefront.

Would that look good if the storefront says, ‘this business does spam activity? This is a branding nightmare, and you will fall behind competitors for being tagged as a spammy business.

Dealing with Spam Scores

Remember the client we mentioned at the beginning of this article? We brought down the spam score for that client from 54% to 3% in less than 3 months.

And guess what, they went through 600% traffic growth since then, yielding roughly 800% growth in sales.

800% growth in sales

We had to take a lot of trouble to achieve that, like replacing bad content with quality content, disavowing spammy backlinks, building high-quality links from authority sites, and many more.

One must follow this due process to maintain a good spam score.

There’s no reason we can’t do the same for you!

We understand how complex it can be to identify the issues responsible for a high website spam score.

If you are having difficulting figuring them out on your own, it is best to have your website checked. You can sign up for our Deep SEO Audit. Alternatively, you can also check out our Free SEO Audit, but a Deep SEO Audit is highly recommended.

If you want to discuss the issue or have any questions concerning spam scores, you can Book a Free SEO Consultation. Our experts will get in touch with you shortly.

Author Details

Abdullah Mahmud is the Head of the SEO department at MonsterClaw LLC. With over 8+ years of experience under his belt, Abdullah aspires to help growth-focused companies with their SEO campaigns.