Is "paid links" just FUD talk?

  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I've read numerous stories about sites getting dropped from Google results for "paid links" over the years, enough so that any time I've recieved an email asking me if I would be interested in selling links on my sites I've simply ignored the emails just to be safe.

The thing is, I'd never seen Google actually say anything about this being bad. I just kinda took everyones' word for it since I'd seen it so often. I couldn't help but wonder lately, if this was just a FUD story that marketing people spread around to keep people afraid of selling links so there's less people selling links making them more valuable.

Well today I had an extra minute when the thought popped into my head so I decided to look it up at Google and I found this which seems like a pretty definitive answer to me.

Quote:
Paid Links

Google and most other search engines use links to determine reputation. A site's ranking in Google search results is partly based on analysis of those sites that link to it. Link-based analysis is an extremely useful way of measuring a site's value, and has greatly improved the quality of web search. Both the quantity and, more importantly, the quality of links count towards this rating.

However, some SEOs and webmasters engage in the practice of buying and selling links that pass PageRank, disregarding the quality of the links, the sources, and the long-term impact it will have on their sites. Buying or selling links that pass PageRank is in violation of Google's webmaster guidelines and can negatively impact a site's ranking in search results.

Not all paid links violate our guidelines. Buying and selling links is a normal part of the economy of the web when done for advertising purposes, and not for manipulation of search results. Links purchased for advertising should be designated as such. This can be done in several ways, such as:

  • Adding a rel="nofollow" attribute to the <a> tag
  • Redirecting the links to an intermediate page that is blocked from search engines with a robots.txt file
  • Anonymous
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • Cabrella
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I cant see how Google could possibly spot most of these. If I wanted to pay for a link on a 'normal' site not awash with outgoing links then there is no possible way google or any other SE would know about it.

At the end of the day, everybody should take due care and attention when getting any links back to their site.
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
If I wanted to pay for a link on a 'normal' site not awash with outgoing links then there is no possible way google or any other SE would know about it.


You're always taking a chance in assuming that the person on the other side of the deal isn't going to drop the dime on you.

When you take that chance, it will always, as in 100% of the time, come back to haunt you. It's only a matter of time.

Trust nobody. If the success of your operation depends on information staying between two people, it is doomed to fail eventually.

That's just human nature. :)
  • The Leader
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Post 3+ Months Ago

There are lots of really good sites that sell paid links and they continue to rank well. I would just avoid the ones that look like basic link directories and stick to good quality linking!
  • bermuda
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Post 3+ Months Ago

You can find a lot of top ranking websites in their niches which are selling do follow links and nothing happens to their placements in Google.

One thing could be true and that is Google devaluing some of the paid links strength instead of dropping the rankings of the sellers.

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