SEO Link Building – what does Google think?

Almost on a daily basis I get emails that look like this:

Our company provide Quality One Way Thematic Link
Building Services which will help you to improve your Google,
Yahoo, and MSN and other search engine rankings. We are USA
and UK based web design firm and we provide 10000+ one way
links per month.

We have a dedicated team of 30 professionals who are backed by
experience and expertise.

Our Parameters for Link Building:
* Permanent Links
* Only thematic Links
* Links from Unique IPs
* Regular Caching sites
* Less Outbound Links
* Links from PR 1 to PR 4 relevant pages

Please let me know if I can be any assistance to you in any of your
existing/future projects.
One Way Link Building Package (Mix PR from PR1 to PR4)

         PR 1 = $ 1
         PR 2 = $ 2
         PR 3 = $ 3
         PR 4 = $ 4       

Packages --

        50 links  = $100
        100 links = $200
        150 links = $300
        200 links = $400

So give us a chance to build our long term business relationship, I
am looking forward for your positive response.

The particular details are not important, the overall flavour is the same – let us build a whole lot of inbound links which will lift the Google rank and position of your search engine results.

I think of it this way. What are the odds that Google doesn’t know this is going on? Squat.

What does this do to the quality of Google’s search result quality? It patently erodes it. This SEO company is going to get a whole bunch of sites that have never heard of mine before to link to it – and via Google’s algorithm that gives points for inbound links raise my ranking. The links will be “thematic” – i.e. they won’t link pet shops to a web design business.

In my view this is very short-term thinking. Google is in the business of providing the best search results in the world. These techniques militate against that – end result, Google will change its algorithm, your SEO spend is wasted and worse Google may decide to penalise sites with tenuous inbound links.

Moral: if you want a quick burst in rankings paying for these services may work but long term they could be a liability.


Why do inbound links matter?

One of the things that set Google apart was/is that its search rankings were influenced by a factor we can call “reputation” – the more highly reputed a site the higher it ranked. How did Google measure reputation? It made the inference that inbound links from other (reputed) sites meant that the site must have a good reputation.

Given the importance of this factor, SEO companies have been gaming this as a way to improve rankings.



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