We have a site with about 1000 pages. We have a limited number of site sponsors who pay to have a text link placed at the bottom all of the site pages.
We've been doing this for years (before we even knew about Pagerank etc.), and are not trying to sell PR to sponsors, the purpose is just for the actual traffic it delivers to them (which is very good).
After reading several posts here about potential problems with these types of sitewide links to advertisers (identical text link on hundreds of pages on a site, purchasing PR), I'm getting concerned.
Right now we use server side includes to put the sponsor links on all of our pages, so the links are indexed by google as part of the page content.
|troels nybo nielsen|
I may be wrong, but if that is the only problematic aspect of your website I do not think you need to worry. One of my domains has hundreds of pages and every single one of them has a link at the bottom to one specific page at another domain. No problem for any of the domains.
Thanks very much for the feedback. Our site has a lot of inbound links, and ranks well with google, and the other major search engines. We are very careful about not doing anything that would seem to be spamming or questionable in terms of optimization.
One of our sponsors recently dropped out, not because of the level of traffic they were receiving, but because of the worry about being penalized for buying links as an artificial means of inflating PR.
I'd leave it alone to be honest.
I'd love to say 'don't worry' but our experience suggests that there might be some risk. We had a nearly identical situation and changed things because partner sites we linked to got hurt in the SERP's. After the change, they came back. Can't say for certain that it was the change that fixed the problem since it happended post Florida and lots of things were in flux then...but it sure looked like that was the issue. FWIW.
We converted their links to graphics btw.
Thanks for all of the input. I kind of knew that like most of these issues the overall answer wouldn't be certain.
One of my sites dropped in the rankings when an I added a banner linking to an advertiser's site on the homepage. The advertiser's site was new and had no PR.
When I changed the link to a redirect (e.g. redirect.asp) instead of linking directly to the advertiser's site, my page came back up the rankings very quickly.
Do you think it could have been coincidence or a temporary glitch?
Have you ever thought about experimenting with this?
How long did you "suffer" for the last time?
I think it would be ridiculous to hide any links from the spiders. The internet is all about links.
The issue is not ideology - it is a whether Google might wrongly apply a penalty.
|troels nybo nielsen|
Precise and appropriate post, Kaled.
Hm, a lot of blogs repeat internal and external links site wide since they keep the same menu bars throughout, and we know there're just a few blogs out there... I can't see Google applying some blanket penalty to all sites using/receiving site wide links. My guess, and it's only that, is a site would be more likely to be penalized if those were the only links it received.
|The issue is not ideology - it is a whether Google might wrongly apply a penalty. |
I'm sure that Google takes into account that there are a lot of legitimate sites that aren't trying to sell PR with their sitewide links, but I don't know if some competitor might try to bring us to the attention of Google as trying to sell PR (although we have no interest/intention of doing so).