This is a post I wrote geared towards WordPress.com users. However, the tips are great for any site, no matter the platform, and are the very first things I do after verifying a site on Google Search Console.
In the thousands of Google Webmaster Tools alerts and messages that are sent each month, about 90% of those are estimated to be black hat related. Another stat that’s interesting is about 3% are notifications of a hacked site; chances are, you’ve seen pharma spam in the SERP results that lead to a normal-looking page. That same 3% covers malware-infected sites, too. Check out the video for Matt Cutts’ take on these alerts.
What we’re interested in knowing is what percent of notifications are for non-spam/non-black hat issues? Does this mean that webmasters are doing better at keeping a solid, optimized site? Is the popularity of good CMS software helping site owners adhere to standards easier?