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Are backlinks to your website ‘Google approved’?

Developing a number of high quality backlinks to your website has long been an accepted search engine optimisation technique. Not surprisingly, not all backlinks are equal and some will in fact have a negative effect on your website. New additions are article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword rich anchor text links, advertorials containing paid links, and press releases and articles containing links with optimised anchor text.

 

The following backlinks may get you in trouble with Google

Large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns
Content marketing is all about getting information out there for potential customers and Google to see. It’s okay to publish new posts on other websites as long as you don’t do it in bulk. Only publish articles and guest posts on other websites if you are genuinely adding valuable information.

 

Links with optimised anchor text in articles or press releases
If your article contains paragraphs similar to our example below you might invite Google’s spam algorithm to pay unwelcome attention to your website.

“There are many home theatre systems on the market. If you want to have a home theatre, you will have to pick the home theatre receiver. You will also need to buy a LCD TV or a projector.”

 

Widely distributed website footer links
Links in the footer that assist with navigation within your website are fine. Links to other websites from the footer area will be of minimal benefit, if any benefit at all.

 

Excessive link exchanges
Exchanging links with other websites is fine. Websites in related fields can happily exchange links. When you think about it, it makes sense that a home improvement website may include links to suppliers or other websites that are of a non-competitive but related nature.

If the link exchanges looks unnatural Google may not like it. If the home improvement site exchanges links with a dentist then this seems like an unusual connection to make.

Use common sense when exchanging links. If you think it is complimentary and would make sense to a human visitor than it will probably be ‘ Google approved’.

 

Automated backlink generating programmes
Avoid any tool or service which is promoted as being able to automatically build backlinks to your website. Google will recognise these for what they are and disregard links built in this manner, or penalise you. After all, didn’t you use Google to find the service in the first place? Google is explicit in stating that these services are not to be used.

 

Text ads that pass PageRank
If you run a text ad on another website, make sure that is uses the rel=nofollow attribute in the link. Otherwise Google might think that it is a manipulative backlink.

 

Advertorials and ads that include PageRank passing links
Best practice is to always use links with the rel=nofollow attribute if you pay for an article or an ad. If the ad includes a paid link that passes PageRank, it may result in a penalty. See below.

 

Paid links
Buying backlinks that pass PageRank can negatively impact your websites position in the search results. All google has to do is suspect that in the context of the page you have paid for a backlink.

 

Low quality directories or bookmark sites
Don’t waste your time submitting your site to hundreds of internet directories. Most will never send you a single visitor and they won’t help your Google ranking.

If a directory is well known and reputable and sends you website visitors then it’s worth getting the link. Having many directory listings is not better than a few quality ones.

 

Forum comments with optimised links
Whether these are obtained from a backlink service / programme or manually by commenting in forums, you shouldn’t use this method to promote your website. The following is an example of a spammy backlink.

backlinks broken chain link

“Excellent post, you really explained that well!”
John
Buy home theatre best home theatre lcd tv

 

 

 

Google doesn’t want to see artificial or bulk backlinks appearing to your site. Sure it is harder to build quality backlinks, but why waste your time and money building low quality links that will do nothing…. or worse! Google has updated the link schemes web page that shows backlinks which Google considers to be spam. I suggest you take a few moments to read this.

By Aaron Enright

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