Webmasters are receiving notifications that websites have fallen foul of the PF filter (a known Yandex Algorithm).
What Is The PF Filter?
The PF filter is designed to proactively demote websites that attempt to cheat user metrics.
Yandex uses user metrics such as clicks and traffic from links pointing to a website as a form of user feedback, and this data is then used as part of the greater ranking equation.
We have previously explored this issue, and how much CTR can affect Yandex rankings, but this is one of the first new waves of the filter being applied for some time.
The notification translated conveys that:
- The site’s position in search results has been lowered
- The use of simulate user actions to search engines.
- Restrictions typically apply for 8 to 12 months, even after the offending tactics/issues have been ceased.
The notification also lists known manipulation services, such as SEOpult and RoboClick.
A lot of webmasters however are claiming that sites have been unjustly punished in this wave of PF sanctions.
I can congratulate Mikhail Slivinskiy and Plato Shchukin – another site caught sanctions for PF, which no one did.
With forum chatter claiming the filter may have been applied to encourage spending on the Direct platform.