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Danny Goodwin

UK Flower Site Banned from Google for Advertorial Links Sees Rankings Restored

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UK flower delivery site Interflora, banished from Google’s UK searches after it placed about 150 advertorials on regional news sites, is out of the penalty box after only 11 days – a timely return to the search results ahead of Mothering Sunday.

It wasn’t initially clear at first why Inteflora was no longer ranking for its own name or terms such as [flowers] or [flower delivery]. But an analysis on David Naylor’s blog revealed the aggressive advertorial campaign Interflora embarked on ahead of Valentine’s Day:

interflora-advertorial

After Interflora and several UK newspapers were punished, it became clear in a Google Webmaster Central blog post by Google's Distinguished Engineer Matt Cutts that at issue were “advertorial” pages. Google advised anyone who receives a warning for selling links to remove paid links or advertorial pages or use rel=nofollow on paid links, and then submit a reconsideration request.

As Dan Barker noted on Google+, Interflora has done a lot of cleaning up, ranking for their name and highly for [flower delivery], though it hasn’t quite regained its rankings for [flowers].

The Interflora penalty is much shorter than what JCPenney and Overstock had to endure a couple years back. And it’s quite good news for them ahead of what is one of the biggest flower holidays.


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