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Paid links and their real effect on your Google rankings

A website’s ranking is based on the analysis of those websites that link back. This link-based analysis is a very good way to measure a website’s value and can help greatly improve the quality of web search. To get a good ranking on Google the quality of links is the most important aspect followed by the quantity.

There are numerous websites one can buy links from to get them to link to your website. Some webmasters and SEO use this method of buying and or selling links regardless of their quality in order to increase popularity on the Internet. However, search engines do not support paid links. Google even has an official form for webmasters to report paid links.Bad quality links and sources can get you in trouble with long-term impact, which is a problem a webmaster recently reported to Google’s webmaster discussion forum:

“Today I found that my entire site has dropped out of sight in search results. I have a site that received over 2,000 search visits per day and today that has stopped.”

The problem was that the website had many affiliate links and linked to advertisers that Google saw as paid links. The links were not marked as paid links and Google penalised the website for having the paid links.

If you don’t want to get in trouble with Google avoid paid links to manipulate the links to your website and do not join automated link systems to increase the number of links to your website. Remember to use the rel=”nofollow” attribute in links to show that the paid links are there only for advertising purposes and that you don’t want to manipulate your website rankings with the link. Make sure that websites linked to your page are relevant to the site, and have keywords related to what you want to get a higher ranking in.

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Kristjan Mar Hauksson is the founder and director of search and online communications at Nordic eMarketing. The company specializes in multilingual online communications, organic search engine optimization, and marketing through several verticals such as tourism, finance, government, and pharmaceuticals. It helps companies gain international visibility online and to use the Internet as a communication channel; it also provides consultation in web content management systems and analytics solutions. Hauksson is on the board of directors of SEMPO, on the Advisory board for Bing Advertising and founded the Iceland SEO/SEM forum. He has been involved in developing Internet solutions since 1996, and involved in search engine optimization and marketing since 1997. He is a publish author on the topic of Internet Marketing and among other co-authored the acclaimed Global Search Engine Marketing.

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