There are right ways to do SEO service and lots of wrong ways to do SEO service. There are all sorts of philosophical debates on the subject but in fact the most basic actions are often overlooked. We’ve gotten to the point that we often do more harm than good unintentionally.
Looking at the overall picture there are certain practices that will get your site penalized, even if such practices worked in the past.
First, the popularity of guest blogging has turned south. What used to be a fun and engaging activity has now been seen by the search engines as spammy and just another trick at link building. This is why in the copywriting community, the most valuable of services that a marketer needs, the talk is about higher quality in work, lest spammy copy, and just overall excellence. No more copywriting farms and teams who cram articles with keywords very sloppily. The new algorithms allow for sites like Google to know if guest blogging is legit or just marketed spam.
Don’t link to other sites just because they look good. You can link to super successful sites and it might make your site look good, however, there comes with a caveat because you never know if the site you’re linking to is legit or a rip off. If the sites you’re linking to engage in any criminal or unethical conduct that can reflect on you and you will get penalized.
Expanding your business with an affiliate program or marketing program that isn’t either honest or perhaps inefficient. It’s a great way to get rich. Affiliate marketing. You have a product or service that you want others to sell for you and you set up your site thusly. It calls for precision and clarity regarding terms and conditions. There you are with your site and program all set up and suddenly you find out months down the line that there are errors in your affiliate codes or website codes and affiliates and customers are in a confusing state. Word gets out and your site goes down the rankings until you straighten things out. If you’re going to expand, do it right with professionals.
Make sure any link exchanges you engage in are done competently and ethically and check up on them frequently. Often, in order to move up the SE rankings we exchange links with other sites that will make our site rise. The other site looks good, the webmasters seem professional and you exchange links and go on about your business. Then, out of the clear blue sky you find months later that the other site has incompetently or through negligence or downright unethically, have placed a link or links to your site and they’ve gotten penalized. This then rubs off on your site and you’ve got to go into remediation.
The bottom line to avoiding penalties is to be honest, competent, responsible, and triple check your links and those that link to you. Vigilance is the remedy here.