SUPER EMD – Can You SEO Rank a New TLD Domain Extension Case Study? .Toys

*Update. Website was Manually Penalized for “Thin Content” Shortly After Tactics Revealed. Coincidence?* Ranking dozens of other websites now using same methods as discussed; have to keep them private apparently.

WTF is a Super EMD? We all know .coms rule the internet world, but a few others such as .org, .net, and .co are gainining popularity as the amount of available virtual real estate begins to dwindle.

.info, .biz and a few other domain extensions have been penalized over the years for their spamminess, and people hoping to jump on the EMD (exact match domain) band wagon.

Many years ago ranked very well for the phrase web2.0 backlinks; it was penalized through aggressive link building (but the principle of why it ranked when it did is sound). It was an EMD subdomain. The actual domain name is/was 0backlinks, and web2 was simply appended to form the exact match phrase.

Exact match domains still work extremely well, but sometimes they can get you into trouble, but what about a Super EMD? A super EMD is an exact match domain that incorporate the actual tld extension as part of the phrase.

.life, .website, .guru, .photography, and for this example .toys

Can see a full list of available TLDs here:

The logic:

Register a TLD that would form a natural EMD phrase.

Ensure it gets monthly searches (Google Adword Keyword planner tool)

Create a quality end user experience (so searcher doesn’t bounce)

The setup:


According to Google Wolverine Toys gets roughly 3600 searches per month. This is not including the categories created on the site.

Since this search has an Ecommerce expectation level, we used this Amazon plugin to create the store in less than a day.

Proper ONpage SEO for homepage, and categories. No index/no follow the product pages in Woocommerce since they are duplicate content (didn’t want to bother spinning or rewriting).

Offpage SEO:

some other strategies that are part of

Currently Ranking around #12 in Google for Wolverine Toys. Other category keywords ranking in top 50, but nothing significant.

Considerations: was not available at the time, but looks to be now, starting at $100 (maybe an auction?). While the might be able to rank better, longterm a Super EMD should prove more brandable and “safe” from updates, unless Google/Yahoo/Bing decide to not rank the newest TLDs (in that case they mine as well throw them out). Google is the only one ranking this website decently, while Yahoo and Bing seem to favor .coms, .net, .org, .co. The search engines need to play ball with the new TLD extensions or they are going to be a huge bust.

Also, a top level TLD still might be king in regards to trust and rankability as we can see is ranking on page 1 for jean grey actress which gets approximately 4,400 searches a month, so we know it’s actually more competitive, but we did run a Crowd Search Me campaign for it months ago which may be the difference.

Traffic/Earnings Report:


Snake Eyes

Traffic is currently 1 hit a day or less (negligible); hoping this turns around once on page 1. Monetizing through adsense and amazon affiliate program; no $ yet. The purpose of this case study is to see if a Super EMD can rank for a low/medium competition phrase with commercial intent; earning back money and time invested would be a nice bonus, but knowing for certainty if these “premium” random domain TLDs can rank in a search engine driven digital world is more important.

Have an Opinion on why this will be an Epic Fail or Epic Win? We need experts like you in the discussion on our Facebook, Twitter, or Google+

* July 10th 2015 Update*

We are now earning! Making money with both Adsense and Amazon each day

Currently ranking #3 in Google

In order to push from #10 to #3 we implemented a technique as old as the internet itself, but in the SEO space it’s extremely new. You’ll want to bookmark this page for the next update.


Deep Link Building Case Study – Should I build links to my inner webpages?

Rank higher in Google with external backlinks to all pages

Did I butcher this Yoda meme? Your inner pages have as much chance getting backlinked as this image does going viral (not very good!). You need to get the ball rolling on your content promotions, otherwise you wasted time building it out or creating landing pages.

Do you find yourself only building links or concentrating on Offpage SEO promotions to your main homepage? Don’t worry, you are in good company! 99% of webmasters only focus on the homepage (as there is a trickle down effect of ranking ability), but what happens if you don’t neglect your inner pages? Let’s become an elite 1% 🙂

If you are following the how to rank an adsense / amazon affiliate website you’ll know the link building was done to the homepage (forum link building case study). Links and traffic are up, but let’s try to build up the inner pages to see if it’s worth it.

We chose social bookmarking with Bookmarking Beast and deep link building with Backlinks Indexer (rss feeds, web2.0s, etc). This is because they are economical and scalable; both have wordpress plugins available to make this process run on auto pilot.

The Setup:

30+ inner posts / pages from

500+ bookmarks each via Bookmarking Beast

30+ pages ran through Backlinks Indexer 15 times (basic allows 50 per day)

Results: Traffic provided by Piwik. Also have Google Analytics installed.

increase inner webpage rankings


The deep links built to the inner pages, posts, and key category / tag pages not only improved the overall link profile of the site but allowed the inner pages to rank for random phrases related to those product pages. While each page might only have picked up a few more visitors, with others exploding, in aggregate the amount of leads can be increased exponentially as you build up your entire web property vs only focusing on the homepage.

social bookmarking helps seo


The real takeaway is the ability to map out your website, whether for yourself or clients and then target multiple markets. If you are a lawyer, chances are your inner page about DUI or marriage divorces isn’t backlinked half as much as your homepage. Nearly any website can benefit from a stronger supporting cast of webpages. Just as important is the ability to build links / flow trust / pagerank back to your website in a safe, effective and white-hat way versus bombarding the homepage only and hoping for the best.

$3200 Yearly Niche Website Passive Income Case Study – Earning with Adsense / Affiliate Marketing

website passive income adsense

You are about to learn the secret behind earning hundreds and thousands of dollars a month passively. Passive income. Many people worship it, others shun it, but few know the true principle behind it, systems. Successful investors and businessmen know principles and systems endure. Certain criteria need to be met: measurable, repeatable, scalable and profitable. All will be revealed. The genesis of this case study started with: How to rank an adsense / amazon affiliate website

**Note** Even if you do not run adsense websites, and run a marketing agency or lead generation services, your ROI is most likely actually much higher, allowing you to earn even more following the principles in this case study.


On pace to earn $3,200 passively. This is broken down between adsense and amazon.

164.53 adsense

102.16 amazon

266.69 total for 30 days, extrapolated over 12 months (266.69 x 12) = $3200.28

adsense earnings


amazon affiliate commissions

Analysis – Why this is an amazing investment:

In the earlier case study you can see expenses were north of $2,000. Even if our expenses increased (assuming we weren’t ranking as good as we would like/needed to) all the way to $4k, this is still a very strong investment based on the numbers.

On average it may take up to 5 months to start earning from an investment website such as this. This means by month 24 (19 months of earning x 266.69) you would have earned $5067.11, or a profit of $1067.11. By month 36 you would have profited $4,267.11. That’s a 133% return on investment within 3 years. If only I could get my mutual funds, real estate, and 401k to pay this type of return.

Potential Pitfalls:

Rankings could slip / site penalized

This is mitigated by providing Native English written reviews and providing a relevant Youtube video. Give the end user value and there shouldn’t be a problem. Our average time spent on page is very high (minutes long) whereas bounce rate is a healthy level.

Adsense could get banned

Again, don’t do something shady like encourage ad clicks or use blackhat spun content to rank. You have to either write the content yourself or invest in an expert in this area. You can also diversify by using multiple ad networks such as Yahoo/Bing contextual ads, and a few others but we view as adsense as the best and you shouldn’t muzzle the ox considering our traffic is mostly from big G.

Amazon could get banned

Stay within TOS and this shouldn’t happen. Website is not misleading users and has a clear Amazon image graphic to check out deals or buy now if interested. Don’t forget there is also Walmart, Target, and other major retailers that are opening up their online affiliate stores if you wish to further diversify.

I would label something like this a calculated risk, whereas we are not speculating on the price of gold, or future markets. It’s moderately risky to assume you can rank for phrases, but if you build solid content and offpage promotions the results should be measurable, repeatable, scalable and profitable. The end user wins, Google delivers awesome relevant results, and consumers have a chance to buy through the most trusted platform online, Amazon. Time to scale this operation!

Forum Link Building Case Study: Do Forum Signature Backlinks Help SEO Rankings?

This case study focuses on forum link building. If you are interested in a similar case study on Forum Marketing (free and paid methods) check this article:

This is not a spammy technique as associated with Xrumer, known as “forum profiles” (which many use for tier 2 backlinks) but manual registration, and posting / interacting within a community that is heavily moderated. It’s one of the most time consuming white hat tasks because it involves content marketing (your reply), branding (your name if you wish), and one link per reponse/thread. The first method tricks forum moderators, the other engages with the community, gives back and in return, links out to a website – a reciprocal relationship.

Good examples in the Internet Marketing space are WarriorForum and DigitalPoint. Both allow signatures, but it’s understood that you must contribute something of value (in your response) in order to reap the rewards of your marketing efforts. Same is true with nearly every quality forum in existence.

Why Forum Signatures?

There are thousands of people each day participating in forums. The benefit of becoming an authority and trusted figure is great (as seen with previous study with brand marketing) but what about direct search results from forum signature links?

The Setup:

If you are tracking the “how to rank an adsense / amazon affiliate website” niche test you will know the website was beginning to rank for the term “robot vacuum”. The content is great, landing pages are relevant, and the offpage strategies are built for long term success. Before we began the big push using Forum Signature Links, the links were a bit stagnant, as well as rankings:

increase backlinks with forum seo

Notice the huge surge in backlinks once the forum link building began. This was accomplished by manually registering to 500 forums and posting on them using four-hundred different anchor text terms (roughly a new anchor text keyword per forum/signature). The end result is nothing short of amazing. Not only did rankings improve from the #10 spot for the main term robot vacuum to the top 5, but hundreds of related long tail phrases are now being rank for by The main keyword phrase is diluted to avoid any algorithm penalties, and long-tail searchers are finding what they are seeking – win/win situation.

keyword ranking increases anchor text diversity

long tail seo with forum link signatures

Each forum was posted to around 10 times. 500 x 10 = 5000 forum posts. 5000 potential backlinks. We are also receiving referral traffic as well (better explained in first case study). Forums are amazing places to learn, market yourself, help others, and talk amongst like-minded individuals. This advanced technique was used from our internal service: Manual Forum Posting

How to rank an Adsense / Amazon affiliate website

Case study on how to rank an adsense / amazon affiliate based website in the search engines.

Areas covered:

  • How to pick a niche for adsense / amazon
  • Keyword Research
  • Domain Registration
  • Onpage Optimizations
  • Content generation
  • Offpage Promotions
  • – Link Building and Social Network Signals
  • Monetization
  • Ranking Results
  • $$ Earned

This is a 100% transparent guide on the exact system used.

Picking a niche:

We are going to promote physical products on Amazon, so we should choose a vertical that offers a good amount of choices, but not something that is too broad where it’s overwhelming, i.e instead of choosing Vacuums (extremely large niche), we chose a subset which is Robot Vacuums (moderately large niche).

Even though we could safely assume there is a large market for Robot Vacuums we want to ensure there is a good amount of searches, and a High level of bidding competition (which means you get more per click from adsense as advertisers are willing to pay more).

Keyword Research:

Google’s Adword Keyword tool is an often overlooked yet extremely powerful tool to assess potential and find related keywords for both onpage content and offpage anchor text usage.

The search volumes are high for the main phrases as well as ancillary ones, while the earnings per click look to be very healthy with suggested bids around $1.00. Chances are if a product is being sold on Amazon there was a good amount of market research already performed (no one creates robot vacuums, investing millions of dollars if there isn’t a market for it, so it’s a safe bet to assume a popular vertical on Amazon will yield adsense/affiliate earnings).

Choosing a Domain:

Should pick a domain name with the keyword phrase in it, but not necessarily an EMD (exact match domain) as they were penalized. We went with

Onpage Optimizations:

We installed a random wordpress theme (can probably find better ones) and began the onpage optimization process. This meant having a keyword rich title that didn’t repeat itself, but had complimentary phrases / synonyms and singular / plural instances. Also, uploading logos/images with alt text. The h1 tag is a reiteration of the title, Vacuum Reviews, vs focusing too heavily on robot vacuums which could lead to penalties.

Content Generation:

Since this website is review based, we wanted to give the reader the features/benefits of each robot vacuum, along with a relevant Youtube video embedded. This is enough value to justify driving traffic to this website, as the end user learns more about each robot vacuum, can compare its price, ratings, and watch it in action on Youtube.

*Big mistake*

Thinking we could throw almost any content on the website was a costly mistake. We outsourced the writing to a non-native English writer. While his writing is good enough for article marketing, it lacks the nuiances to help convert a visitor into clicking through to Amazon and purchasing, or staying on the site long enough to find a relevant adsense ad unit and click through. Our bounce rate was very high with this low quality content.

We then rewrote all the reviews using only native English writers.

Offpage Promotions:

Link Building: We view this website as an investment. We wanted to rank, but didn’t want to take huge shortcuts and risk getting penalized by a Google update. This is the exact services we used to rank for long term results:

Social Network Signals



High Pr Blog Comments

Manual Forum Posting

Authority Site Links

High PR Links

Total Investment: Around $2000 retail price (not including content creation)


The website uses Google adsense for relevant ads on the review pages, along with a buy now button that takes the visitor to the respective Amazon page

Here are the Keyword Rankings for the main 3 phrases tracked:

Tracking with Rank Tracker (free version)

Our offpage efforts have built a stable amount of organic Social Network Signals along with diverse backlinks. We are still creating links using the above techniques and are now using 400 related phrases based on Google keyword tool to avoid any over anchor text optimization penalties and cast a wide net of possible search engine traffic. shows our Offpage efforts increasing in addition to the obvioius rank improvements.


And Piwik to track our website visitors.

adsense amazon affiliate website keyword rankings

Over the last few months our organic search engine traffic has gradually increased. The amount of keywords have also increased, with hundreds of different ones (not all shown) were used, also known as longtail phrases. To uncover keywords not provided and understand the greatest potential keywords, i.e. ones ranking on page 2 but get good search volume we use a really solid tool – Traffic Analysis by Swiss Made Marketing.

traffic analysis keyword potential adwords search volume

 $$$$ Earned:

We have just recently added Google adsense (still need to optimize our placements/colors) and are starting to get a good amount of Click Throughs to Amazon. We will either update this post or create a new one to notify you. Any predictions on earnings?

Forum Marketing Case Study – Can Forums bring Referral Traffic? Organic vs Inorganic

We all know Google use to be the only dance in town, and for most part it still is, but what if you could reach your target market without going through the major search engines or social media websites? This of course leaves us with forums; yes, those antiquated discussion areas people used before social media.

People have varied interests: pets, video games, fetish categories, and unicorns. Throw in health issues you don’t want everyone to know about in your immediate circle and you are left with anonymous forums of like-minded individuals. So how can we leverage this resource? For me, it’s posting to forums in the niches of business, webmasters / coding, marketing, entrepreneurs and a few others. Since we were promoting an offer that speaks directly to online marketers, business men, coders, entreprenuers, we used certain forums that cater to this audience (seen below). Of course, this will be different if you are in the clothing niche, gardening, video game, etc.

Service Marketed:

Social Network Signals – service that provides organic social media marketing to businesses. Target market: seo / social / marketing agencies (as resellers); direct customers.

The Forums: (Each below Image Links to their respective threads)




With a Pagerank 5 and Alexa 4,500 NamePros is a well respected community of people that buy and sell domains




ImTalk has a Pagerank 3 and Alexa 6,800 covering various online marketing topics


BusinessAdviceForum has a Pagerank 5 and Alexa of 27,000 covering business related issues




V7N has a Pagerank 5 and Alexa 4,000 with a range of topics related to online marketing





TalkGold has a Pagerank 4 and Alexa 4,800 covering ways to make money online




Code4Gold has a Pagerank 2 and Alexa 178,000 discussing webmaster topics




Webcosmoforum has a Pagerank 4 and Alexa 10,000 featuring webmaster discussions




MoneyMakerDiscussion has a Pagerank 3 and Alexa 25,000 discussing ways to make money online




WebHelpsForums has a Pagerank 4 and Alexa 163,000 discussing webmaster issues





MoneyFanClub has a Pagerank 3 and Alexa 46,000 covering make money online topics





BlackHatRealm has a Pagerank 0 and Alexa 143,000 covering online marketing





WebmasterMalaysia has a Pagerank 2 and Alexa 230,000 discussing webmaster topics tailored to Malaysia



TheIMForum has a Pagerank 2 and Alexa 108,000 discussing internet marketing

SEO Mastering



SEOMastering has a Pagerank of 4 and Alexa 2,800 focusing on SEO and online marketing





MoneyMakerGroup has a Pagerank of 4 and Alexa 2,500 discussing ways to make money




FreshMarketingForum has a Pagerank of 3 and Alexa 35,000






DreamTeamMoney has a Pagerank 3 and Alexa 6,000 featuring general webmaster discussions



HelpingWebmasters has a Pagerank 3 and Alexa 90,000 webmaster topics

Not Accepted:

WarriorForum (if it was a guide on making $$ it would have been accept :), smallbusinessbrief, htmlforums, talkfreelance, geekpoint, webmastertalkforums, affiliatebot, seoforums, es5

TrafficPlanet – used but cancelled since $29.95 per month subscription to keep thread active and ROI wasn’t there – used but threads auto delete after 2 weeks, and $40 subscription – ouch

The Results: (Inorganic / Paid threads)

Hand-full of live threads. Not all forums have a Marketplace / Advertising section whether free or paid, which is why not all forums are represented. Did I miss any? Please let me know in comments section.

Total Pagerank Piggybacked: 50+

Referral Traffic: 17 visitors

Forum advertising paid posts referrals

SEO Rankings: now on page 2 for Social Network Signals

The X-Factor (DaniWeb Advertising):

$500 each month for a text advertisement. We were shown in the web design category

Daniweb advertisement



. Daniweb might be the worst $500 ever spent (only did it for the case study – epic fail?). $500, 17 clicks: $29 per click! No wonder Google hit them in one of the updates; it’s a ghost town of nonsense

daniweb advertising

But what about Organic Forum Marketing? Non paid posts. Like most things online, organic looks to happen naturally and yield much better results:

Results: (Organic / Non paid) traffic for a 4 month time span to; mentioned naturally due to excellence and brand recognition

Forum Signature and random links for trafficOrganic is the clear winner. Inorganic forum marketing is an uphill battle – one that usually requires funds to create threads and/or a serious committment to make the minimum post count on forums. Since Time is money, the only marketing worth doing on a forum is organic. If you enjoy posting and having occassional traffic from your signature link, then it works out well for you, but this should be something others in the community talk about, not you forcing the issue. So how do you get people to talk/link back to your websites?

1) Become a brand, recognized name in the industry

2) Offer freebies if other members of the community will do a review writeup on the forum

3) Post until your hands bleed and hope your one man army signature yields results


If you don’t love talking about the topics in which you service, then registering and making around 25 posts (the usual minimum is going to be extremely boring and time consuming for you). While the Internet is insanely large, each niche is suprisingly small when you start to register to all the forums in that niche. Forum marketing is an old tactic, but certainly not outdated. It’s effective in gaining trust within your community as I signed up with my name – Matthew Anton as the username, vs SEOdude432. The benefits of the Pagerank and Search Engine Rankings is strong, and the referral traffic is a bonus, even though it was intended as the main focus when we began the study.

Forums should be a place for discussion, opinions, reviews and occassional promotion of services. Be weary of the gurus lurking on the forums; chances are the only thing they are successful with is selling on forums (weird incestual ecosystem).

TLDR version:

Forums are great for quality links, both free and paid threads

Forums can drive targetted traffic, albeit a weak ROI compared to other advertising

Forums should be used primarily to build your brand and expertise within your industry

Some people are only successful selling to others on Forums (avoid them)

Use Forums as a tool to network, grow your brand, and sell your products/services, but don’t become dependent on them

Organic is infinetly more valuable than Inorganic Forum Marketing

Ready to utilize the awesome power of organic Forum marketing? Our exclusive non spammy signature link service engages with the community, creating manual forum posts for high quality one way backlinks – extremely powerful, long term, and time consuming on our end!

PiggyBack Method: How to Rank in Google by Standing on The Shoulders of Giants

*We reveal how we rank for a 22,000 exact match keyword with an average CPC of $4.32 using this method / principle – actual webpage as well. No theory here!*

how to rank in google

Work hard little Timmy, and one day you’ll be promoted! Do you remember your father telling you that? Well, it’s a lie (and not just because your name isn’t Timmy), and the reason for much of the suffering in the webmaster community. The search engines have been good to some (1%), and harsh to the masses (99%); hopefully Google Authorship helps restore balance back to the average webmaster. You most likely don’t have an authority site, never will, but all is not lost. We can still piggyback off giants and reap the rewards:

“If I have seen further than others, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants.” – Isaac Newton

Amazon Piggy Back SEO


As Prague showed, you don’t have to build the Eifel tower from the ground, if you have a mountain to piggy back (epic fail?). Sure it’s a cheap imitation but it helps the end result (getting noticed, or in this case, traffic).

The top 500 Alexa websites should be eye opening

Youtube, Yahoo, Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, Amazon, WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, and the list goes on. Sure, there are websites that you can never have your articles, videos, or website posted to, but just skip those and focus on the ones you can use.

They also rank very well in Google. Exhibit A) How to Make Love to a Woman

Which is a search my wife asked me to make. Now we can see Youtube has multiple listings along with yahoo answers (many know of this fact, but don’t leverage the easy ranking ability of not only Youtube, but all top alexa 500 properties. Even websites in top 20k are easier to rank than new websites). Rather than try to create a website or webpage to rank for this phrase, you can simply create a Youtube video, build links to it, and rank much much faster than if you went solo. While the yahoo answers doesn’t steer anyone to a website or purchase, this is common place

youtube dominating search results


























And remember the Raspberry Ketones craze made popular by Oprah Winfrey and the Dr Oz show? Amazon is a trusted platform, and building backlinks to your page all but ensures a ranking on the first page of Google. Same is true of Etsy, eBay, and other ecommerce platforms.

Amazon ranks well in Google



















That person is probably making a few hundred dollars a month extra because of this listing. The point is, higher pagerank, higher alexa websites tend to get the lion share of the search traffic. There is no point fighting it, or wondering if it makes sense, or is hurting the little guy; all that matters is you understand this and leverage it’s power. Regardless of your niche, you can piggyback, whether on the generic popular web2.0s, social networks, youtube, etc, or even forums in your niche. Now we’ll show you how we are ranking for an ultra competitive phrase all with the help of Facebook and our internal Link Building / Social Media marketing services:

facebook page ranking in google















Currently ranking #4 (it fluctuates) this one piggyback successful strategy is driving tons of qualified leads to our affiliate programs. It also helps that our affiliate programs are 25% recurring passive commissions each month for life of customer, so it’s a win-win for us and those that land/like the page as the end user is benefiting (which is what Google wants to see).

If you wanted to win the term “affiliate marketing” and build a new website focused on this topic, perhaps, it would take a huge investment, and be very risky. When you stand on the shoulders of well-like giants, you cut your costs in half as well as your risk. Whether you do this on Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, forums, prweb, prnewswire, youtube, and how can we forget, Ezinearticles (remember their falling out?) you still hedge your bets, and even if one authority site drops, there is always another to take its place. Your main website should always be your priority, but this is another tool in your arsenal to get more qualified traffic, and a mindset where SEO again makes ROI sense for the small-medium size webmasters, also known as the 99%.



How to Recover From Google Panda / Penguin Updates using 301 Permanent Redirects Case Study

Hello Fellow Webmasters!

Getting attacked by a Panda bear is no laughing manner, or worse, death by a cute cuddly Penguin. Is there really a way around this penalty, or a way to recover in the Google Search Engine Rankings.


Many will say to keep building quality links and push through, but the sad reality is once a website is penalized and on the radar of the Gods, there is usually no coming back (this is why we suggest you vary anchor text and do things right the first time). But hindsight is 20/20 and let’s see a real live case study that is better than we could have ever imagined.

The Test Subject:

The number 1 review site of free to play MMO / MMORPG video games (I use to play these types of games endlessly – UO, EQ, World of Warcraft, etc). They have over 170,000 Youtube subscribers, pagerank 6, and have the best written content, images and videos on the subject. They were getting an amazing amount of search engine traffic until the Panda struck.

Click to Enlarge Image to See the Panda bear devouring MMOhut organic hopes

Notice the Panda update around April 2011 left MMOhut completely crippled. They have the best content on the subject, thorough reviews, one of the most popular Youtube channels for video games, yet here they are, cast aside as another “successful” detection of the Google Panda algorithm.

The Solution:

Yes, you read that correctly. They registered mmohut and added an “s” to the domain. Is this really going to work?

Click to Enlarge Image to see the Panda and Penguin unable to find their prey

Notice the “new” domain, is getting over 250k search engine traffic a month now. For those of us that love organic seo, we know this is a huge number and it represents thousands and thousands of dollars. It could very well be the difference between $0, $50k a month, or more.

How did they do it?
They realized their main page, should not be redirected but all the thousands of inner pages that existed such as: will be redirected to the new, non penalized domain.

Why does this work?
Google isn’t dumb. If a penalized domain would transfer the penalty via a redirect, Negative SEO would reach new heights. Webmasters would simply spam a website, and redirect it to a competitors. Because of this, there are loopholes like this that exist.

Is this blackhat?
I don’t know, but was it ethical to ban a website that was providing such high quality content?

Take aways / Actions

If you have a domain that has been penalized, register a new one with an “s” added, or it can be completely unique. Redirect your webpages to your new domain. You might lose $12 on a GoDaddy domain, but the upside of 250,000 search traffic (okay maybe you aren’t getting that), far outweighs the negatives. Best of all, you are already penalized, so why not take the plunge. Only upside at that point.