Google’s Devaluation of Link Programs

I follow a number of blogs and newsletters focused on search engine optimization techniques. It continues to amaze me when supposed experts talk about link programs and their value in getting placement on Google. If they had read Google’s patent disclosure from last year they would know that they need to be rethinking link campaigns.

Right now I am watching a client and analyzing the techniques that we are using for organic improvement on Google. The days of using link software are gone, as Google will ding you for linking to poor quality sites. In fact before you link to anyone, you should evaluate their site for how it works with your content, their pagerank, and the actual placement of your link. Getting a link for the sake of just a link is actually now a very bad strategy to take when you are focused on Google placement.

We know that linking from blogs doesn’t work anymore as all the main platforms now insert a no follow tag in the link, some forums still have a follow property in their links, and so some forums can still be good for you to post and link back to your website and blog, but not all.

We are also evaluating feature article writing as a way to get quality inbound links, and so far have found that although this tactic generates an abundance of links, but that Google is smart enough to net them out when determining organic ranking. There is some buzz in the marketplace that  it may take 90 days for Google to add the links to the site’s organic ranking, but to me from what I have seen so far this sounds like an apology for non-performance. I am watching two situations very carefully using feature articles for link generation and as soon as I can ascertain if this is a workable strategy I’ll let you know.

In the meantime, be very suspicious of webmasters and SEO firms that try to rope you in with link building programs, you may be paying for a strategy that Google has devalued.