I guess the next step is to have a premium service where links must be on general content pages, without more than X other external links on the page...
That'd screw google good and proper
I am hoping soon it will be Google that is doing the "s'ing"
We did some tightening for this crawl, GrinninGordon. You have to expect some fads as people try to boost their links, but that doesn't mean that it will do much good for them. This scheme sounds more like multi-level marketing. Come to think of it, it wouldn't surprise me if people have tried that too. :)
OK, hope so :-)
You got it right with FFA links, I am hoping that reciprocal links stops being the reason tin can sites make the top results too.
o_O I want to make the big-small eyes icon here because for the first time I don't know GG is talking about.
o_O? tightening for this crawl? expect some fads ... doesn't ... do much good for them? multi-level marketing?!?!
What ive recently seen is link exchange networks where site A links to Site B and site B links to site C and C to A bla bla. Basically sites don't link back to each other directly so it doesn't look like they have exchanged links.
Face it, there is simply no way google can counter these actions. Any little change google makes the webmasters will make. The fact is that it is extremely easy to cheat your way into the top of the search results now.
I think what we may see eventually is tracking of visitors searches and the clicks they make and how long they stay on a site to determine its importance for that search term.
|Face it, there is simply no way google can counter these actions. |
I tend to disagree. Such sites form a closed loop of links and those are detectable.
I'm getting a bit overwelhmed these days with shady link exchange requests. Lots of cookie cutter requests for example, and they get ignored. You start to recognize these before long.
One look at the site making the request usually tells the story. Zeus sites, PR0 sites, robot excluded links pages, thousands of links sites, etc, etc.
Also, it's kind of an unwritten rule that you'll probably remove links from sites that don't reciprocate when an exchange is requested but anyone who says in their exchange request that I'll be removed if I don't reciprocate doesn't stand a chance of being listed on my site.
About 80 - 90% of the link exchange requests I get these days, and I usually get several a day, are not ones you'd want to deal with.
>>I am hoping that reciprocal links stops being the reason tin can sites make the top results too.
Are you kidding? isnt that a major part of the google algo? I would think that a site would not be able to obtain many quality link exchanges if it is a "tin can" site... If they can get quality sites to link to them, then the site must be of some quality..
>>Are you kidding? isnt that a major part of the google algo? I would think that a site would not be able to obtain many quality link exchanges if it is a "tin can" site... If they can get quality sites to link to them, then the site must be of some quality..
When I analyze the backlinks of 'tin can' sites that have made it to the top I've found there are several possible reasons. Once of which is hundreds of backlinks from OTHER tin can websites. The other reasons come from things like paying for PR and spammy guestbook links...
There are plenty of high PR links for a spammer to find, but that does not mean the links are quality. PR does not equal quality.
GG & GG
"GoogleGuy, when are you going to ignore pages with "link" in the directory path, page name or title?"
The non-profit organization I work for is several years older than Google (not as high profile!) and has "Link" as part of its title:-)
This is common in the non-profit sector;
Environment Link etc.
Have to be careful here.
I take your point though that these reciprocal link exchanges devalue Google search results.
I dont think banning/ignoring pages with link in the title will do much good. Its not difficult to change this anyway.
Also, if google does encourage link swapping / reciprocal links then why should they be banned? I think if the algorithm concentrated more on the theme of the links (referrer site theme and refered site theme perhaps containing common keywords e.g. auto insurance/ auto loans) then this would be a fair way to do it. Complementary themes,etc.
Am i right GG in that this is a safe way to promote sites i.e. by swapping links with other related but not necessarily identical-content sites? E.g. widget insurance and widget rental?
Basically, I don't see anything wrong with G's link algo. The more links you have on a page, the less they're worth. If you have a "link exchange" page that is worthless to the visitor, it's pretty worthless for spreading PR as well.
On the other hand, having related links available to your visitors is a great service. Just because you don't sell Blue Widgets in your widget line doesn't mean your visitors wouldn't benefit from a link to someone who does.
On the other hand, if you link to every Tom, Dick, and Hairy non-Widget site, you're not helping your visitors and not spreading PR. No problem.
We have a Widget News page that our visitors frequent. We don't have time to publish all the current news in the industry so we just link to the best Widget News sites -- and most of them link back to us. If we were to link to every possible Widget News site, the link page would be worthless to our visitors and worthless for spreading PR.
Basically, I don't see what's broken.
|If you have a "link exchange" page that is worthless to the visitor, it's pretty worthless for spreading PR as well. |
The gamble is that the page that the return link is on has fewer links / higher PR than the outgoing one... then you fullfil your return of link obligation AND get PR benefit.
I agree with Gamblin ... I don't see where anything is broken in regard to exchanging links.
Link spammers can trade link with other link spammers all they want.
By exhcanging links with a limited number of high quality, relevant sites, my efforts will pay off with a source of highly targeted traffic even if the search engines decide to ignore the links.
If you've got a quality site other quality sites will accept your exchange request, even higher page rank sites that feel a link to your site can offer something useful to their visitors, and especially if they feel your visitors will be interested in what they have to offer. It appears to me than one or two links from high quality, high page rank sites pay off better than dozens of shady links.
What's broken is some people's belief that an automated e-mail campaign for link exchanges will get them a link from my site.
Depending on the industry, many sites my just link to directories and the directories back to them...
"The non-profit organization I work for is several years older than Google (not as high profile!) and has "Link" as part of its title:-)"
I am sure Google can determine what is a valid links page from established sites, and what is a lin exchange page.
"On the other hand, having related links available to your visitors is a great service. Just because you don't sell Blue Widgets in your widget line doesn't mean your visitors wouldn't benefit from a link to someone who does."
Related synergetic / value links are good, and should appear on the real pages. Links pages are there for SE reasons, not for users to browse. Some sites put valid (the first type) links on a links page. But, as I said. If Google can't work that one out, then I would be amazed.
The problem is that people with good and indifferent sites now just exchange links. It is like schoolboys collecting cards - you want them all. And this is not good.
--Links pages are there for SE reasons, not for users to browse.--
That is your opinion!
We have links on sites that compliment ours that use links pages and get a lot of traffic from them. If they were just there for the SE, then we would get none.
Everybody is so affraid of linking.
After all, Google is nothing but a bunch of links!
Links are good as long as they don't go to bad places!
I also said;
"Related synergetic / value links are good".
So I do not understand why you have a problem with the rest.
The majority of links pages on the web are run the same way that they were before google came along. "Here is a list of links to what I consider cool sites."
It is only a problem in certain competitive commercial areas.
For most of the web, links pages are just small personal web directories, and they still generate traffic. I get thousands of visitors a month from links pages, and thousands of visitors use my links pages. In fact, I am planning on revamping them in the coming week to make it more useful for the user (and hopefully for google too).
I think google might be interested in trying to put some effort into identifying "bad" links pages.
I agree recip link programs can get way too agressive and before you know it you're creating a bunch of useless links no one will ever navigate through or use because they are totally irrelevant.
But I think Google needs to figure out who are the serious offenders here. The way I see it there are various "levels" of link popularity inflating techniques. Some very devious, some legit.
1. Reciprocating your own links, by multi domain site with keyword stuffing anchor link that have little to no content. They are only created to increase their own link popularities. This is the worst kind if you ask me.
2. Bulk Reciprocal link exchanges of off theme sites. Like my 50 PR7 travel sites exchange links with yor 20 PR8 gambling sites. This is also very bad in my books
3. Reciprocating of off theme sites. Small amounts of this is not a big deal, but I'm sure an algo can predict within a certain amount of probability if this is being done un-naturally or not. Like If I have a personal site, I may link to my favorite casino, credit card company, whatever. But if the site has a specific theme to it and it is sending out all kinds of junk recip links that is highly "unatural linkage" for that theme, then I think those links should be downgraded specifically.
4. Reciproting of themed sites by bulk, this isn't a big deal at all, and may even be very legit. Like hub/spoke, linking every page to every page within the company structure of the same theme. I think these links should be fine.
5. And of course just regular recip links of similar theme. These are the best kind and should never be penalized.
The problem is, google doesn't penalize recip links of the #1 and 2 variety as they should. They should concentrate on downgrading/eliminating those before worrying about other types of link exchanges.
Personally when I link exchange I only use #4 and 5 methods, I never do off theme site links and never do bulk link exchanges. Because I think one day Google will catch up with this spamming method.
I misunderstood you.
I thought you were trying to say that all links pages were bad!
I think the hard part is and always will be with Google... What is a legitimate hub/spoke setup and what is a a bunch of spammy sites linking to eachtoher creating their own little community trying to inflate their PR?
One good example of hub/spoke is CNET
You can see their web properties listed in the URL above, and there is significant interlinking between all of them. There should not be anything wrong with this.
I myself have modelled my sites around CNET's format and created a corporation like "born2drv inc" and branched off into subsidiaries and divisions which all focus on unique products or services and have significantly different themes.
Anyone could really do this but there is a very grey line about what are subsidiaries/divisions or partner sites and what are just a collection of spammy domains with no content. So that's why Google has such a hard time differentiating between the two. But when a human lands on the site they can tell relatively quickly if it is spam or not. Most often, they were just on another site with the exact layout in a different color or something.
I think Google needs to impliment some sort of "customer satisfaction" factor in their algo based on how long the user stays on the site or something or how deep they surf into the site. They need to somehow differentiate the content sites from the fluff without manually checking every site which would be impossible.
>GoogleGuy, when are you going to ignore pages with "link" in the directory path, page name or title?
Which would screw over the sites that call their links page that which aren't part of link farms.
Not to mention sites that sell hot dogs!
I'd just like to counter a little of what's being said around here. I can't remember who posted it, but they said that when they look to trade links with a certain related site they look out for zeus sites, PR0 sites and penalized sites. Well, that's not exactly fair! I have a brand new site that just got indexed and have started out with a PR0 (I found webmasterworld a little too late!). I try and exchange links with sites that are related to mine in content to aid my visitors. When I get emails back from snooty webmasters who say they can't link to my site because it is PR0, I PULL OUT MY HAIR! I mean, my site is clean, useful and new...what the heck do you expect? Sorry, just ranting....
davewray - Whats the big deal? I don't trade with PR0 sites either :) But i'm in the same boat as you too.... 2 completely new sites that are ready for major branding and recip links... but both have PR0 now.
Just give it a link or two from somewhere and be patient. After the next update when you have PR ask those webmasters again and tell them your site was never penalized to begin with.
born2drv...thanks :) I guess I just get worked up sometimes! It just seems like the next update will be so long. But you do have a good idea just to email these same webmasters after the next update. In the meantime..more content!
I'm know this doesn't relate to the topic of this thread...but why do new sites start out with PR0?...especially if they're clean, have good content and have several links pointing to them?
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