One Company’s Comeback After Being Penalized for Over-optimized Links by Google


Company Folders, Inc. now ranks in the Inc. 5000 as one of America’s fastest-growing private companies, with a revenue increase of 128% from 2011 to 2014. But between March 2012 and January 2013, Company Folders was in a tailspin of shrinking revenue, and founder and CEO Vladimir Gendelman was facing the very real possibility of closing the business and filing for bankruptcy.“We bet our entire marking strategy on traffic from Google’s search engine,” said Gendelman. “That traffic was the lifeblood of the company. And after getting penalized for over-optimized links by Google, our website traffic dropped by two thirds almost overnight. Our revenue and profits quickly followed. We had gambled all of our resources on just one strategy—and we were at risk of losing it all.”

On the brink of ruin, Gendelman considered closing Company Folders, but ultimately decided against it. “After everything that my team and I have dedicated to this company, I just couldn’t do it,” he said. “Instead, I borrowed the money that we desperately required to keep the business afloat and build the resources it needed to succeed.”

After downsizing, Company Folders reinvested the new funds by offering an exclusive 365-day quality guarantee on all products sold, a brand new website, and a highly efficient online quote process. The business also hired customer service representatives with extensive backgrounds in graphic design and provided those employees with advanced educational resources.

The company also unveiled a new marketing plan based around educating and inspiring their graphic artist clients. That plan included a new blog, providing helpful tips, tutorials, and other informative articles to graphic designers. This was followed by the debut of a folder design gallery, offering an easy-to-access pool of inspirational resources and showcasing the work of talented designers around the world.

By May 2013, Company Folders’ revenue and profits were better than ever. “It’s been an arduous struggle,” said Gendelman, “but our hard work has paid off tenfold. Our staff is amazing; every single person has been dedicated and supportive throughout this process.”

Gendelman is confident that Company Folders’ dramatic growth points to a promising future. “I never thought we would be in the Inc. 5000 list,” he said. “I was just hoping to survive, but now the future looks very bright. And the Inc. 5000 is yet another example of just how far we have come.”
About Company Folders, Inc.

Company Folders, an innovative presentation folder printing company, offers the largest selection of folders and style options. Since it was founded in 2003, the Michigan-based business has worked with thousands of small- and mid-sized organizations to create premium quality folders and other print marketing materials that showcase customers’ brands and stand out among their competition. For more information, visit