Buy Links for SEO or not

Links, and in particular one-way links, have always been thought to be one of the top metrics that search engine web sites look for when ranking websites.

Although the spirit of linking to another website is to show a tacit recommendation for that website, there are many ways in which this metric can be exploited. One way is to simply buy links or pay a search engine optimization company to buy links for you. The temptation of saving the time and effort of having to build relationships and court the opinions of webmasters is quite a strong one, yet many people swear off buying links for their websites, including many search engine optimization experts.

The main reason is that the search engine algorithms can somehow tell the difference between paid links and organic links and will heavily penalize sites which have paid links pointing to them. However, many people still pay for links or allow the search engine optimization companies that they hired to do the same thing. Why? Why do people go for the quick rise in metric rather than the long-term comprehensive social media and blogging strategy? And most importantly, is it worth it?

What you will find if you ask anyone who has used paid links for any significant amount of time is that the practice is not worth it. The major search engines, especially Google, make the punishment for paid linking much worse than any benefit that you would ever gain from it. The practice is known throughout expert circles to be packaged and easily found out, mostly because people tend to become lazy about where they placed their paid links, eventually placing them on irrelevant pages with low page ranks.

It should be noted that Google, or any of the other major search engines for that matter, are not strictly against paid links. It is the lack of quality that accompanies most paid links that the search engines have a problem with. Because the search engines have a responsibility to their “customers” above all, they do not want to see your paid links from your shoe website on a blog about politics just because that blog happened to be an extremely popular one.

This also tends to protect webmasters who do not have the time to police large websites, giving them a sort of quality protection over their customers. The overall quality increase is what the search engines are going for, and as they are the gatekeepers of your visibility on the web, they are the rulemakers.

All in all, paying someone to do paid links for is not worth the trouble even in the short term. The search engine algorithms are becoming more and more accurate at identifying paid links with every paid link that they find. The penalties for using paid links too often can include banishment from the major search engines, which does absolutely nothing for your business or your brand in the long term.

What search engine optimization specialists recommend is a comprehensive search engine optimization program which takes management of social media, twitter and blogs to actually reach out to and find your true audience. In the long term, this is a much more effective strategy for business that are trying to build a brand. Keeping yourself focused and your marketing strategy, intently focused on building and maintaining a brand with a target audience has long been known as a much more successful marketing technique than simply throwing spaghetti on to a wall and seeing what sticks to it.

Jeff is an internet marketing consultant, a blogger and he often writes about SEO. He likes to share his knowledge and experience with others, and helps them with their online presence. Jeff is also the owner of nPromote, a well established SEO company in NY.

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