Most companies spend their time and resources focused on positive advertising, but there are some that have been accused of participating in a negative SEO attack against their competitors. Tasty Placement decided to experiment with the concept of negative SEO in order to determine just how viable such an attack can actually be.

To make the test as realistic as possible, Tasty Placement used a website that they have owned for approximately two years. Over the past twelve months the website has not received the benefit of any positive advertising, but it was still listed at number three in search engine rankings for a common keyword search string. After a year of maintaining a high rank with no positive advertising, it would seem like the website would have a firm grasp on a high search engine ranking, but Tasty Placement's experiment conclusively proved how incorrect such a theory would be.

The results showed that it only took one month and $45 to effectively ruin a website's search engine ranking. Thanks to the incorporation of 56,000 junk SEO links, their test site dropped down 11 places and ended up on the second page of search results. Most Internet users focus only on the first page of search results, so the impact of dropping to the second page would most likely be quite strong.

Original study & infographic by

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