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This 65 message thread spans 3 pages: 65 ( [1] 2 3 > >     
Competing with Link Text only
trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 4:30 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

Our new site, launched a month ago, is up against a lot of "google-bomb" style SERPS manipulation <>.

Going to be difficult going up against them. This is a very competitive sector and they have over 3,000 backlinks (that I know of) via such means.

All these backlinks are totally off-topic, irrelevant, and simply a means of using mass anchor-text inbounds to manipulate the SERPS.

These guys currently hold the #1 position in G, which is what I'm gunning for.

I'd be happy with a top 5 SERPS listing for the bulk of phrases I'm targetting, but I'm quite competitive by nature ;-)

I'm interested to know what you guys would do in these circumstances?

TJ

[edited by: ciml at 3:13 pm (utc) on June 19, 2004]
[edit reason] Please see Sticky. [/edit]

 

mfishy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 5:48 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

I would go for 3001 links or pick another field. Popularity rules in all search engines.

You either have to have a site that naturally attracts tons of "votes" or stuff the ballot box. The links are relevant and on theme simply because of the anchor text. Anyone who says otherwise is simply mistaken - but you know this as you just said they rank #1 with all off topic links...

Note: I am certainly not saying that all links are created equally as they are not. Rather that competing with a site that has, say 10x more links than you is very, very difficult.

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 6:29 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

We will attract a lot of links - we've had some national press coverage and natural linking is coming in. 2,000 with perfect anchor text is tricky though.

We'll make top 5 (the #2 and #3 spot should be relatively easy for us to take), but I'd love to knock these guys from the #1 spot for the thrill of it.

They are not relevant links in my opinion. I classify a relevant link as a link on a page which, even remotely, is topical in some way.

This is direct manipulation of the SERPS by anchor text bombing.

Hmmm... having said that, I guess it *could* at a push be called "textual advertising".

TJ

AthlonInside

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 6:45 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

trillianjedi,

Model him and rank #1 (or #2 if you can't beat him) with the same tactics that he has used!

Craig_F

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 6:49 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

Link bomb to the same level, while off getting your natural relevant links as well.

[edited by: ciml at 3:14 pm (utc) on June 19, 2004]
[edit reason] Edited for clarity. [/edit]

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 7:23 pm on Jun 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

Craig and Athlon,

Yes, I want the #1. #2 would do us just fine, but this guy's annoyed me and shall incur the wrath of the jedi!

I could google-bomb. I'll let natural links hit a few hundred first though. ;-)

TJ

[edited by: Marcia at 5:11 am (utc) on June 19, 2004]

graywolf

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 12:42 am on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

3,000 inbounds from 3,000 different sites or hundreds/thousands from the same sites?

edit_g

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 8:38 am on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

The only way you'll beat these people is by having more on-topic incoming links with the right anchor text - consider partnering with closely topic related websites for a quick boost. Until google changes it's algo that's the only way. :(

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 9:40 am on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

edit_g - that was the kind of discussion I was looking for.

That's actually what I've been doing (or has been happening naturally). We're getting links from authoritative on topic sites.

I'm curious as to whether anyone has experience of competing pen against sword like that?

Keeping my own backlinks topical and relevant I'm unlikely to hit the 3,000 odd that I'll need.

So the real question is (numbers for example only), does 1,000 topical themed anchor-text backlinks from on-topic websites beat 3,000 script-kiddie anchor-text backlinks on personal homepages? I mean that in a "all else being equal" type way, although we can forget about PR here. This is about quantity, not quality.

As far as I can tell at the moment, the answer is no?

TJ

bird

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 9:58 am on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

Keeping my own backlinks topical and relevant I'm unlikely to hit the 3,000 odd that I'll need.

So your site isn't listed in the ODP?
All the ODP scrapers out there may not immediately result in 3000 backlinks, but it would clearly be a step in the right direction if you know how to work with it.

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 10:12 am on Jun 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

So your site isn't listed in the ODP?

We launched (officially) a month ago, but we had our ODP listing back in about February. There are about 50 backlinks that I can see which are from ODP rdf-dump pullers.

Need a lot more than that.

TJ

Marcia

WebmasterWorld Senior Member marcia us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 5:23 am on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Note: Folks, let's discuss the process being used, but stay away from any specific methodologies.

Figuring there are 3K backlinks with anchor text being generated automatically from unrelated sites, are the backlinks 100% the identical anchor text with no variation at all?

There have been some discussions regarding the safety of that, with some saying all identical is just fine and others among us believing that there's risk of a penalty when a certain threshhold is passed with a percentage being identical.

mrclark

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 3:04 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

The thing is, how can a website be penalised for having the same achor text?

It's not under their control who links to his/her website and who doesn't. I really can't see Google punishing a website because of that.

Being punished for who they link TO yes I would go along with that, but not the other way around.

That would be like charging somebody everytime they receive a telephone call, instead of charging them when they ring out.

Steve

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 3:11 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Thanks Marcia.

There's variation, but the ratio is strong to the key anchors involved. I would say about 95% the same anchor text looking at a sample. I obviously haven't checked all of them.

I'm no longer completely convinced about the identical anchor text argument (I don't think there's a penalty as such Marcia - I think it's about algo formula weightings).

If the weight of anchor text is reduced in the algo for mass repetition, it doesn't seem to me that you need all that much variation to maintain the usual weighting given.

I think the answer is to wait a couple of months and see whether "less quantity but more authoritative and on topic" links are given better weighting.

If not, the answer will be to out-bomb the competition.

TJ

digitalv

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 3:18 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Figuring there are 3K backlinks with anchor text being generated automatically from unrelated sites, are the backlinks 100% the identical anchor text with no variation at all?

There have been some discussions regarding the safety of that, with some saying all identical is just fine and others among us believing that there's risk of a penalty when a certain threshhold is passed with a percentage being identical.

This is kind of a silly suggestion that I've been hearing from a lot of people lately, and there isn't any truth to it what so ever. Google doesn't punish people who have a lot of links. How many people link to Microsoft.com with the word "Microsoft" What if your site was listed in 10,000 directories and the link text was your Company Name or your URL? Google may "watch" this sort of thing and manually de-list sites if they feel the links are a result of a SEO and not independent sites who all happened to use the same anchor text in the link, but I am sure there is no automatic process that drops people if they have too many links with the same text. Google's philosophy has always been that you have no control over who links to you, so they wouldn't penalize people for it unless they had a good reason to suspect that "you" were linking to you.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 4:20 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google may "watch" this sort of thing and manually de-list sites if they feel the links are a result of a SEO and not independent sites who all happened to use the same anchor text in the link, but I am sure there is no automatic process that drops people if they have too many links with the same text.

No, but Google could use a massive number of inbound links with the same anchor text as one factor in a spam-detection process. In other words, if you had 3,000 inbound links on "widgets," that wouldn't be enough to get you penalized, but if you had those links plus high scores for several other possible indicators of "grey hat" or "black hat" SEO, the algorithm could make weighting adjustments that would result in lower rankings on the SERPs.

I have no idea if Google is doing anything like this, but it's a reasonable scenario. Google prefers algorithms to human intervention, and a spam-scoring or spam-weighting process would be comparable to human judgment (which can take many factors into account instead of relying on simple rules).

wanna_learn

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 6:22 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

trillianjedi
I wonder even if this site would stay there for more then 2 months.

Things like this are kicked out permanently out of Google as quick as they rank top.

(I know exceptions are there in large quantities though)

JeremyL

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 7:01 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Never saw an answer to this so I will ask again. 3,000 inbounds from 3,000 different sites or hundreds/thousands from the same sites?

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 7:54 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

Jeremy - was answered, but part of what got "clipped".

3,000 from different sites.

Things like this are kicked out permanently out of Google as quick as they rank top.

There is nothing in google's TOS which says that text link advertisements are not allowed.

Google try to combat things like this by tweaking the algo, but this is not something for which google could implement a "penalty" (human).

Personally, I don't think google could do anything about it other that ensure that on topic relevant links out-weigh all others.

TJ

ownerrim

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 8:43 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

"They are not relevant links in my opinion. I classify a relevant link as a link on a page which, even remotely, is topical in some way."

I have to really take issue with this. When the web was relatively new, people who put up sites would link to whoever the he** they felt like, often because they had simply found a site they thought was interesting and wanted to share. There was nothing wrong with it and there's still nothing wrong with it. And, in fact, that was one of the things that was neat about web surfing in the mid 90''s----never knowing where you might end up.

The idea that a link should always be relevant to the page it sits on is FUNDAMENTALLY flawed...because if you took that to the inevitable end, there wouldn't be a web. And the web would be quite boring as well.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 9:45 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

The idea that a link should always be relevant to the page it sits on is FUNDAMENTALLY flawed...because if you took that to the inevitable end, there wouldn't be a web. And the web would be quite boring as well.

That's a good point. Also, a FORBES "Best of the Web" link or a PC Magazine "Top 100 Web sites" link to a widgets site might not be as relevant (themewise) as a link from another widgets site, but it certainly deserves as much weight--especially since it's less likely to be part of an artificially crosslinked network of sites.

mfishy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 9:49 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

<<The idea that a link should always be relevant to the page it sits on is FUNDAMENTALLY flawed...>>

The folks at Google agree with you. The orginial post in this thread states that the pages that ARE ranking #1 and #2 have loads of "off topic" links. This is the norm, not the exception.

With all the talk about topicality of backlinks around here, you would think that it was a major factor in the scoring algo.

But...
This is a very competitive sector and they have over 3,000 backlinks (that I know of) via such means. All these backlinks are totally off-topic, irrelevant, and simply a means of using mass anchor-text inbounds to manipulate the SERPS.

This is the reality accross the board. Honestly, it makes it easier to rank with so many webmasters chasing this empty theory. I can say that here as everyone will continue to believe in theming just because they think it should be so :)

JuniorOptimizer

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 10:41 pm on Jun 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

How could theming work? Opposing webmasters could point off topic links at your site, destroying your "theme" and wiping you out in the rankings.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 1:19 am on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

How could theming work? Opposing webmasters could point off topic links at your site, destroying your "theme" and wiping you out in the rankings.

Not if your "theme" were drawn from on-page factors. If that were the case, off-topic inbound links simply wouldn't carry as much weight as on-topic links.

I agree with mfishy's comments, by the way. Using "theme" to reward on-topic inbound links would simply give that much more clout to networks of interlinked affiliate and e-commerce sites. Google has already reduced the importance of PageRank because of "link abuse."

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 10:28 am on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Some interesting points raised. I tend to agree - theming is certainly not in action here.

Perhaps a poigniant question for webmasters is in relation to ROI.

For your search terms, is it cheaper to google-bomb to the #1 "natural" SERPS spot than run your AdWords campaign?

Buying traffic and SERPS positions has never been easier or cheaper.

SEO in google can be simply about buying text links in bulk. There is nothing else that you need to do.

TJ

Incidentally, many of these sites do not even have the keyword in their title. In the example I came across, the keyword does not exist on-page anywhere.

wellzy

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 11:01 am on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Jedi
Much better traffic from the organic serps than Adwords. I've always had better results from the organic listing - even better than Overture. I believe if SEO is done right, PPC is just a nice supplement.

wellzy

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 3:32 pm on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Wellzy - it's a question of ROI.

Which offers better performance, AdWords or google-bombing?

TJ

JuniorOptimizer

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 10:48 pm on Jun 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

It depends on how you value ROI. If you take into account quality of life, paying for PPC will probably make for more restful days than anchor bombing.

Lots of thinks can go wrong with a bombing run, so if the PPC pays off it could be worth for peace of mind. You can rely on the clicks coming in as long as you have the ad budget fixed.

graywolf

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 1:26 am on Jun 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

Both type of links count, both on topic and off topic. The question to ponder is are on topic links more than marginally better than off topic ones?

mfishy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 24447 posted 3:29 am on Jun 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

<<on topic links more than marginally better than off topic ones>>

Or maybe "off topic" links are better? There is as much evidence for that...

This 65 message thread spans 3 pages: 65 ( [1] 2 3 > >
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