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Selling Text Ads/PageRank - Just Semantics?
Does Google Really Care About Selling PageRank?
skibum

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 7:49 am on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

What exactly determines who can sell PR and who gets nailed for selling it? Does it really just come down to the sales presentation?

If you say you sell relevant text links or text ads, you're ok but if you say you sell PageRank you paint a bullseye on your forehead and you'll get PR0'd or the links will not pass PR?

 

Brett_Tabke

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 10:48 am on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Version A:
We have sold ads for years. We offer advertisers the option of having a click tracking redirect if they want it. If they do, their url will look like theirsite.com/cgi-bin/redirect.cgi?foo=fred&session=123456 - If they do NOT want the click tracker, it will be a bare link. [wink]...

Version B:
We have a PR8 and we can sell you a text link off our homepage for just $20,000 a month! We will give you a bare link to theirsite.com and PR will pass!

Which version is Google going to look at? It is all a matter of sales presentation.

SearchKing got booted for presenting Version B, while others higher profile sites (who we won't name) in this very biz are winking and selling version A.

creative craig

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 11:00 am on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Version B seems to work for <snip>, well they I expect they do not word it in the same as you did Brett.

[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 2:42 am (utc) on July 28, 2004]
[edit reason] sorry - lets leave the specifics out I guess. [/edit]

edit_g

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 11:19 am on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Where's the line? Is there one?

We've seen giant networks selling text links and never getting a scrath - we've seen others stopped from passing PageRank and/or dropped out of the index like a hot potato. The only people who know the answers ain't talking - I don't expect that to change...

Saying that - anybody who mentions PageRank (or even the words: 'search engine') when they sell text advertising deserves everything coming to them.

jonathanleger

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 12:58 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Saying that - anybody who mentions PageRank (or even the words: 'search engine') when they sell text advertising deserves everything coming to them.

But the ones who just imply it don't?

edit_g

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 1:10 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

But the ones who just imply it don't?

If it is implied why does it need to be mentioned? It just makes the target painted on their backs bigger.

trillianjedi

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



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 1:43 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

White gif box on white background, nobody would know the difference unless they look at the source code.

That model will only survive until a manual review by google, which will happen eventually, if the site is succesful. Then it gets nuked as what you're suggesting is against the google TOS.

As Brett correctly states, a wink is better than a nod.

There is nothing wrong with selling a text link. Selling for the purposes of PR is against google's TOS.

It's absolutely a case of presentation.

Second point on your question, what most people want is the link with anchor text - an image will only pass PR.

TJ

jdancing

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:15 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

If I buy ten targeted, relevant home page text links, am I a bad person deserving of banishment from all search engines?

What about those that have "links pages" with 100s or 1,000s of reciprocal links from a wide variety of topics who's only purpose is to provide search engine keyword popularity? Should they be banished also?

What if my 10 targeted links come for pay-for-placement directories like Yahoo, JoeAnt etc... am I a better person?

What if I pay more than you for Overture or Adword and am listed at the top of the search engine results? Would this make me a good, ethically person?

What if I spend $500,000 on a site promotional campaign to drive millions of visitors to my site? And what if this campaign built huge brand awareness, creating a buzz on the web and in the news, which in turn resulted in several thousand sites to link to my site? Would this make me good person because of my deep pockets?

Please help, I just want people to like me………….

skibum

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:21 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

So where does editorial integrity fit in here?

Isn't PageRank supposed to be an (objective?) editorial judgement?

Does the editor base his/her judgemenets on a filter that looks for things like "PR 8 LInks for sale" or "buy a link & increase your search engine rankings"?

Maybe its not that different from the mainstream press.

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:26 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Selling text links as an advertising medium has been around for a long time -- even before the advent of the concept of PR. It is only the past year or so when people became obsessed with PR, and hence the demand to monetize PR started and grew.

But why should companies who sell text links as advertising be nailed for selling it? If your site's sales presentation makes a clear case for selling text links -- and NOT selling PR -- G should not punish your site.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:44 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

But why should companies who sell text links as advertising be nailed for selling it? If your site's sales presentation makes a clear case for selling text links -- and NOT selling PR -- G should not punish your site.

Google doesn't have to punish anyone's site. All it has to do is ignore or devalue links from high-PR sites that are known to sell HTML (as opposed to JavaScript) text links.

Hilltop is another line of defense against for-sale links (such as the blatantly commercial outbound links that I've seen on one major weather site).

trillianjedi

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



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:50 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Isn't PageRank supposed to be an (objective?) editorial judgement?

I don't think it's ever been that in reality. It's simply a measure of inbound link structure.

Those links which count towards the overall pagerank figure are not always objective, or even subjective (links from poor editorial sites/homepages).

TJ

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:54 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Yes ... by "punish" I mean removing the ability to pass PR.

It will be easier for the algo to detect if the link is Javascript vs. HTML. But isn't it inherently unfair for an HTML link to be automatically stripped of passing PR -- even though the site in its sales presentation does not claim to sell PR? There are a number of webmasters who do not know ad management systems that could allow for the creation of javascript links.

Marcia

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



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:55 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>what most people want is the link with anchor text - an image will only pass PR.

TJ, check out the alt attributes of images in the text-only version of the cache. From how they look you can't tell them apart from regular text links. I've had reason to believe for quite a while that alt text has a degree of importance.

graywolf

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 3:33 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

If you're in the business of sellings links, you are going to get the most money selling text links to SEO type's, who are much more interested in buying a PR8 homepage link on a website about Cryptozoology, than a PR4 site with 10,000 daily visitors that is on topic. Like most of us they are trying to get the most money they can out of the deal. However they don't/can't understand why they aren't supposed to advertise it that way, since thats what you really want.

HughMungus

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 3:58 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google doesn't have to punish anyone's site. All it has to do is ignore or devalue links from high-PR sites that are known to sell HTML (as opposed to JavaScript) text links.

What's the difference between someone putting a link on their site for me because I did some code work for them (payment for a link that appears to be a "vote") and me buying a link on someone's site (payment for a link that appears to be a "vote")?

Chris_R

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 4:16 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Like brett said - it is all a matter of perception.

Google pretty much encourages peoplle to buy PR from yahoo.

Oh yeah "get listed in their directory" or whatever.

When you are a public company - selling PR is ok. It is a smart business strategy.

Everyone else is just out to make a buck on affiliate scumbags.

If you are going to sell PR - don't ever use the word PR, google link pop, or whatever. You just happen to have some space for textual advertising. That is really what you want anyway.

the people that want to buy this - will find you.

Will google block it - it depends on how much of a problem it is. If you have a PR9 page and are selling pills, casino, and all the other stuff that the big boys promote - don't be suprised if google notices.

Here is my off the cuff graphic example:

+++PR10 PR9 PR8*ish+++
+++OTHER REALLY PUSING IT SITES+++
+++SEARCH KING AND PEOPLE SELLING PR+++
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
GOOGLE'S RADAR
VVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVV
Where you want to be.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 4:26 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

What's the difference between someone putting a link on their site for me because I did some code work for them (payment for a link that appears to be a "vote") and me buying a link on someone's site (payment for a link that appears to be a "vote")?

Your question is academic, because Google gets to decide what links should or shouldn't be devalued. :-)

In the examples that you cite, both types of links should be devalued, but it's obviously a lot easier for Google to put a manual block on links from a known PR9 link seller than is it is to filter out untold thousands of client links to SEOs and Web designers.

Brett_Tabke

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 5:02 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google pretty much encourages peoplle to buy PR from yahoo.

Very good point Chris. That is exactly what they did!

HughMungus

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 5:23 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Your question is academic, because Google gets to decide what links should or shouldn't be devalued. :-)

In the examples that you cite, both types of links should be devalued, but it's obviously a lot easier for Google to put a manual block on links from a known PR9 link seller than is it is to filter out untold thousands of client links to SEOs and Web designers.

Right. I agree. But the point is that links are being sold either way. I guess it's like selective enforcement of anything else -- you can't bust everyone so the high profile offenders are busted as an example.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 5:53 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

I guess it's like selective enforcement of anything else -- you can't bust everyone so the high profile offenders are busted as an example.

Yep. Don't sell any text links if your domain is marthastewart.com. :-)

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 6:11 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

It will be hard for G to assume in their algo that HTML link = selling PR as there are many legitimate reasons to set a link as HTML. So more than anything at this point, it will be a manual check, with the most notorious offenders first up on the chopping board. Hence, presentation is key. Write a low-key presentation with Brett's wink-wink approach and you can fall below G's radar.

BigDave

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



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 6:33 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

The difference between selling a text link and selling PR is that with one (the link) you are selling something that belongs to you. With the other (PR and search engine ranking) you are selling something that belongs to Google. The PR of your site is still Google's property, no one else can determine your PR.

Google does not only block those sites that specifically sell PR, they also block some that have a tendancy to cause bad results in some searches because of who they sell their links to.

skibum

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 6:46 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

With Yahoo! one might contend that there was a rather standard human quality review (at least in the beginning) which would in turn improve the search results overall.

When the size of the transaction is what determines the boost and the relevancy, maybe its a little different?

edit_g

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 11:14 pm on Jul 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google does not only block those sites that specifically sell PR, they also block some that have a tendancy to cause bad results in some searches because of who they sell their links to.

They block some sites while leaving others unchecked. This has nothing to do with causing bad results - some sites get blocked, some don't. If it was about bad results they'd all get blocked.

The question isn't why they're blocking the sites (which is pretty obvious) the question is: of two PR9 sites selling text links in the same way (for example) why does one get blocked and the other goes untouched?

BigDave

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



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 12:37 am on Jul 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

They block one site over another because the right person becomes aware of some problem with some of the links from that one site.

They don't have to be fair or even handed.

nakulgoyal

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 1:42 am on Jul 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Just see all those link selling websites and people are crazy buying and selling links....!

jdancing

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 2:37 am on Jul 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

Crazy like a fox…

Early last year, before one clever site turned the masses on to the idea of monetizing links advertisements, link advertisement buying and selling was pretty much controlled by the SEOs.

It was like magic, you pay an SEO and your SERPs improved. Their customers were basically buying link packages under the name of ‘Search Engine Optimization’. Now everyone can do it and one of the SEO's biggest edge has disappeared.

graywolf

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 3:13 am on Jul 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

It was like magic, you pay an SEO and your SERPs improved. Their customers were basically buying link packages under the name of ‘Search Engine Optimization’. Now everyone can do it and one of the SEO's biggest edge has disappeared.

Just because you have a recipie go to the store buy some flour, yeast, and water, it doesn't mean you're going to end up with a good loaf of bread.

You need to know how to buy the 'right' links and how to bring them together, or else you'll end up with a sticky-gooey blob that will never rise.

Kirby

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 25024 posted 3:32 am on Jul 28, 2004 (gmt 0)

>You need to know how to buy the 'right' links and how to bring them together, or else you'll end up with a sticky-gooey blob that will never rise.

So true. However many self-proclaimed SEOs make dough without actually selling a real loaf of bread.

This 43 message thread spans 2 pages: 43 ( [1] 2 > >
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