When a website is blacklisted by search engines, that means it will not appear in search results. The only way to find it is to directly type in the domain name in the URL bar.

Why do search engines blacklist websites?

Search engines are always looking out for the searcher, they are the most important group of users and their needs trump everyone else’s. That being said, search engines want to give the best quality and most accurate results possible when a suer types in a search query.

Search engines also want to protect their users, so any website they consider to be unsafe will end up on the blacklist. If your website has been hacked in the past, has hidden malware installed, has a high spam score, has links or buttons that designed to mislead users, you have plagiarized or copyrighted content on your website, there is a good chance your website will be or already is blacklisted.

How do I tell if my website is blacklisted?

If internet browsers display alert messages when you visit your website, the following are examples:

  • The Site Ahead Contains Malware!
  • Suspicious site
  • The site ahead contains harmful programs
  • This page is trying to load scripts from unauthenticated sources
  • The Site Ahead Contains Malware!
  • Did you mean [site name]?
  • Is this the right site?
  • This website has been reported as unsafe
  • Deceptive site ahead

There are several online tools that you can use to check and see if your website is on any blacklists. You can use SiteChecker by Sucuri which will check for malware and blacklists on your website at the same time.

How to stay off of Blacklists

Secure your website!!

Installation of a security certificate is a must. If you website doesn’t display the lock in the URL bar (https) make that happen now. Also make sure your web server security standards are up to snuff and they preform regular malware scans.

Use clear and accurate messaging

If you want users to be able to download files from your website, use clear language informing them what and how to download. Using the button text like “Download our Application PDF” or “See our Brochure” are good examples. Make sure all links connect to pages that make sense. Users should be able to read a button or link and know exactly what that link or button will do.

Be careful with forced interaction

Pop-ups can be perceived as blacklist worthy if they force the user to do something that is considered malicious. Always provide close buttons on pop-ups and limit the number of pop-ups in use. If forced interaction is necessary (like in the example of an Age Gate), buttons on the pop-up should only be used to accept terms or provide enough information for the website to work properly.

Interested in having Kreativ build you a website?

Check out our website design and development services and contact us when you are ready to talk about your project.