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Surprised to see sites rank extremely well with not many backlinks!

 4:28 am on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hi guys this is not my first time here. Although I read posts here often, but this is my first thread and I think I have to start it.

OK let me cut a long story short. I am in a not-so-competitive field selling some stuff to French, I rank second and third on my major keywords, the first has been buying hidden links every Christmas from high PR .gov websites and it has been doing fairly well, well this is behind the point.

About a month or two ago (that is, June 2011) I discovered that a new website overrank mine and it really gave me the creeps. The domain was registered on 29/11/2010 and it have no sitelinks even when you search the domain name.

I used to think this is Google dance or something caused by Panda. Then all of a sudden, sitelinks appeared after one month. So I searched many keywords in my industry, major ones or long tail ones, this site almost all came first or second with sitelinks. Its Alexa rank soared from some 5,000,000 to 100,000.

I thought at first this guy must have been buying links to build a strong linkage profile. So I used [siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com...] to check it, and found nothing, all its internal pages. I did a link:itsdomain on Google and did find some links, about 13. But when I tried to find its links, again none! Even when you search his domain name directly, still a few links - those people can get it easily, and no sitelinks at all!

This is my second time to see sites rank extremely well on lots of major keywords and long tail ones with very less backlinks. But this site gives definitely the most surprise to me as it's really very new!

So guys what do you think?



 11:45 am on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have a site for the US market with a lot of very high quality natural backlinks to its 250-word news posts, but the site was pandalized in Feb. and now has about 150-200 google US organic visits per day, versus previous around 1,200.

Two months ago, I made a brand new site with only one 500-word review post and it ranks excellent at between #1 and #4 with that review for various related queries, without ANY backlinks.

Because of this and similar cases, I have an impression that content is now a lot more important than backlinks, when compared to pre-panda era.

Can you please rate content of the new website? Does it have better content than yours from your point of view?


 12:14 pm on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

OK let me cut a long story short. I am in a not-so-competitive field selling some stuff to French, I rank second and third on my major keywords, the first has been buying hidden links every Christmas from high PR .gov websites and it has been doing fairly well

Welcome ..Bienvenue to WebmasterWorld :)

re links for sites selling to French..( btw ..do you mean French in France or French elsewhere ? ).gov will not be as much use as you would think..our French government uses .gouv TLD, and with very very few exceptions also uses it in conjunction with the TLD for France the .fr.

( A .gov would work for reinforcing a backlink profile to the USA..as it is the USA government's TLD )

For example .."Bercy".. The French Finance Ministry is at ..


Re ..getting to number 1 with few backlinks ..that is not as hard as people imagine ..even for competitive terms ..depends on how good your site is, how good the competition is ..and how good Google perceives them and you to be..and how good the visitors perceive them and you to be and what "signals" Google gets from that..and the quality of the backlink(s) ..( "quality" can mean many things )..it is in the eye of the beholder..be they search engine or visitor..when both see a page or a site as having innate "quality" then "quality" backlink(s) reinforce that perception.

Even small one page sites can reach and hold number spots..or at least oscillate around the 1.2.3 spots..


 12:39 pm on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Most of my B2B clients with lots of #1 rankings don't have much in the way of backlinks. They've all been around for at least a decade though.


 1:48 pm on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hi danijelzi, thanks for your reply. It's hard to say this site has high quality content, on the contrary, dup content appears everywhere. Like I said, it's a e-commerce site selling stuff made in China, this guy just copy part of the official product description.

The site also sells some accessories together with its products. For example, it sells product A + accessory B, product A + accessory C, product A + accessory D, each has an independent URL with the SAME description. The only difference between each URL is a single line of description of accessory in less than 5 short words.

So I should say it has a lot of dup content.


 1:49 pm on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

I am afraid I am unable to understand Google's new algorithm. Google has been unpredictable. How on Earth can a site with less words in article can be spam. I am so much amazed with Google's new updates. It updates PR very often(4 times this 2 months),its ranking system has changed and it has been difficult to predict Google search Rankings.


 2:07 pm on Aug 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hi Leosghost, thanks.

Actually they are buying hidden links from Chinese gov.cn, edu.cn website using CSS position tricks. But I am not sure if Google takes them as government or education links.

Anyway, it achieved what it wanted, high PR (PR 6) and good rankings.

By the way, those government and education websites have lots of vulnerabilities, so hackers could easily get web shell and place links.

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