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Google Manual Action Removal

A manual action from Google can have devastating effects on a website’s ability to rank. Removing a Google penalty has become very difficult for SEOs over the last few years.

Marie and her team have been helping websites remove manual actions since 2012.

A manual action means that a member of Google’s webspam team has determined that your site is violating Google’s guidelines. You can determine whether your site has a manual action by looking at the manual actions section in Google Search Console. If you do not have a manual action listed there, then there is another cause for your traffic drop such as a change in Google’s quality algorithms, or a technical problem with your site. MHC can help, by doing a site quality assessment and making suggestions for quality improvements for your website.

MHC has a 100% success rate for unnatural links penalties with clients who follow our recommendations. We are also experienced in helping with thin content penalties, pure spam penalties, and any other type of manual action from Google.

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We have seen a 100% success rate for unnatural links penalties with clients who follow our recommendations. 

Marie Haynes is the founder and CEO of MHC. She writes for Search Engine Land and has been published in Semrush, Moz, and Ahrefs. Marie is often quoted on Search Engine Round Table. She is known as an expert on understanding Google’s search algorithms. Marie and the MHC team have extensive experience in understanding and removing Google manual actions.

How do you recover from a manual link penalty?

When Google penalizes a website with a manual action for unnatural links, it means that they have stopped counting the value that passes through many of the links that point to your website. They do not tell you which links are the problem. To remove a manual action you will need to determine which of your backlinks violate Google’s guidelines in regards to link schemes. You will then need to either disavow those links or remove them from the web.

You can hire the MHC team to help remove your manual action by filling out the form below.

Or, you can use the information documented in Marie’s book on removing unnatural links penalties which has been used by hundreds of SEOs who wanted to learn how to audit links and remove manual actions.



Go to Google Search Console and click on Search Traffic, then Manual Actions. You will be notified if you have a manual action there. If you see “No Manual Webspam Actions” then you are dealing with another problem.

Contact us for information on our site quality assessment and traffic drop assessments.

We don’t always know why a site gets a manual review. It could have been reported by a competitor or a member of Google’s Webspam team reviewed your site and decided it should be penalized.

When you have a manual action, it means part or all of your site is being either hidden or suppressed in search. This means your traffic and rankings can be drastically affected. If this is the case, it is important to have it removed as soon as possible.

Manual actions do expire. Most will remain on a site for two or more years unless action is taken to clean up the link issues and request reconsideration.

This can vary. It generally takes us 4-6 weeks to complete our process of filing for reconsideration. Once filed, it can take anywhere from three days to six months to hear a response. In the last few years, we have found it takes several months for Google to reply to reconsideration requests. While we often succeed on our first try, it can take longer if we require multiple tries.


We follow these steps when removing a penalty:

  • Make a thorough list of backlinks as gathered from ahrefs.com, majestic.com, opensiteexplorer.org, Webmaster Tools Sample, Webmaster Tools most recent and other sources.  We also have a process that we use that helps us to find links that are not available on any of the backlink checkers.  This helps us to get more penalties removed on our first try.
  • Manually review at least one link from every domain linking to the site. The goal is to determine which links Google would like to see removed and try to keep as many good links as possible.
  • Manually review at least one link from every domain linking to the site with a followed link. We document this process thoroughly.  We contact site owners through email addresses we can find on the site, whois email addresses and contact forms. Note: If link removal is deemed necessary, having the MHC team do this work may require an extra fee beyond your original quote.
  • Complete and file a disavow file. This file will be very thorough.  The file contents are discussed with the site owner prior to filing.
  • Write and file a reconsideration request.

Marie was the answer to our Google penalty issue.

She’s everything you look for in a contractor: she knows what needs to be done, is goal and milestone oriented, sends regular status updates and works methodically until the job is done.

We put our business in Marie’s hand and she delivered. She’s earned our trust and our respect. Hire her immediately.

— Name not disclosed for privacy , Large brand

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