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Link modification requests - Anyone bothering with them?
nippi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 7:27 am on Feb 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

I am getting a lot of link modification requests lately.

"we have been penalised for unatural links, can you please change the anchor text of your links from "blaH to "bla blah".

I am ignoring them, becuase the anchor text for links from the site in question, is set by a vbulletin plugin, which changes the anchor to whatever the page title is for the target page.

But I am curious.

Surely if Google has marked a page as being an unanatural links page, there is no point in webmasters asking other webmasters to modify anchor text for such a link? Its already been determined to be unatural, why bother with it?

Anyone got a position on this, or got any intel that indicates modifying anchor text and accompanying descriptions of old links makes an iota of difference re Penguin?

 

aristotle

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 8:21 pm on Feb 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

Wouldn't it make an unnatrual link look even more unnatural if it's anchor text is suddenly changed years later? I don't know if the Google algorithm is sophisticated enough to identify this kind of manipulation, but it might be, in which case the change could do more harm than good.

Hoople

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 9:21 pm on Feb 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

Let me see if I've got this --- change a link that was clearly placed for the benefit of the search engine into one that's kinda-sorta the same thing but disguised to be closer looking to a natural link (but not an honest one).

Sounds like that'll still be working in 2014 based on what I've read - NOT! Domain in link or domain in text would have a far superior longevity IMHO.

ken_b

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



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 9:33 pm on Feb 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

Maybe just change the anchor text to the business/site name, or just delete the link.

nippi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 7:27 am on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

these comments mirror my position, I am changing them all to busines name

skibum

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



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 5:45 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

One has to wonder, what is the purpose of all this from Google? If it is unnatural, then why does Google not just ignore it and move on. Google's advice has always been to design for people and not search engines, yet now they expect people to get OTHER people to change their sites in order to enable Google to do something. What is that something Google hopes to achieve by doing all this?

Hope_Fowl



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 8:48 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Next from Google "HA-HA can't fool us" notifications.

Rlilly

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 8:53 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Changing anchor to the business name - and if the business name is a keyword or has a keyword in it, then what?

ZydoSEO

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 9:03 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

I know many here are anti-Google, but in their defense regarding suggesting webmasters take down links they deem potentially harmful...

Think of all of the web spam on the Internet. There are tons of blog networks created for no other reason than to have properties on which to "plant" a link to some other property that is being promoted. Imagine all of the paid blogroll links that exist on the web. Imagine the sheer number of spammy links due to blog commenting and forum posting with "Nice post! <insert link>" created by some 3rd world link building sweat shop. Throw in all of the duplicate content on article submission sites which get republished on crappy little mashup sites where there is ZERO effort by the webmaster to generate some sort of worthwhile unique content on their own. Imagine how many websites have been suckered into paying $5-20 to have their site submitted to hundreds or thousands of crappy, worthless, free PHP directories that are essentially just another form of web spam.

I think rather than simply ignore the gazillions of webspam links on the web, Google is urging people to take down those links to save Google what likely equates to hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars per year in processing power. I'm guessing this is why they suggest that you make every attempt to get detrimental links removed BEFORE you resort to using the Disavow Tool. The Disavow Tool puts even more processing requirements on Google's servers when crawling and indexing sites.

Could Google simply ignore those links? Absolutely... but at a huge cost. Is it self serving on their part to tell webmasters hit due to unnatural links to identify and remove detrimental links to their site? Of course. But if I were in their shoes, I would likely be doing the same thing. They are a public company after all.

In fact, I'm not sure I would even have provided a Disavow Tool so soon after Penguin since it has probably added as much processing requirements to their servers as might have been saved by webmasters having taken down billions of spammy links world wide. Perhaps that's why they waited as long as they did to announce the Disavow Tool. It certainly wasn't because it was difficult to develop. They could probably code it in a few days.

internetheaven

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 9:19 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Here's how I respond to these link removal requests:

"Dear person-that-has-changed-their-mind, I already took the time (for free) to link to you after you asked me to. If you have changed your mind based on some hunch you have, (which in turn is based on some fearmongering by Google), then I will have to charge you $20 for me to take the time out from other important work to undo the work you originally asked me to do. Please quote your URl when you send the Paypal payment to ?@?.com

All the best
Mike"

And yes. They pay. Google has people that scared, that they will pay me $20 to remove a link I gave them for free. So Google .... PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE keep scaring webmasters for no legitimate reason. It's going great!

fathom

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



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 9:51 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

One has to wonder, what is the purpose of all this from Google? If it is unnatural, then why does Google not just ignore it and move on. Google's advice has always been to design for people and not search engines, yet now they expect people to get OTHER people to change their sites in order to enable Google to do something. What is that something Google hopes to achieve by doing all this?


Technically Google didn't advise anyone to do anything about PENGUIN devalued links... the world assumes a specific course based on Google's suggestions involving manual action to be revoked... you need to remove the offending links or edit with rel="nofollow" (or disavow in the case of problems to do the former two).

The only real PENGUIN oriented comment Google has suggested is the removal of links if you feel such links are embarrassing to you... as you can always get referral traffic from all links even if devalued or nofollowed.

With PENGUIN around I questioned the need for Google to continue with Manual Reviews since PENGUIN automatically does what Manual Review have done in the past... it is clear PENGUIN cannot easily identify every unnatural linking pattern ... the more sophisticated the pattern the more PENGUIN mistaken such links as organic.

Be that as it may, PENGUIN DOES IGNORE INORGANIC LINKS... you don't need to do anything to with them... but getting your ranks back without using inorganic links is problematic for most since most have never considered how to develop organic links.

In there is your problem.

ScottM

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 10:19 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

And yes. They pay. Google has people that scared, that they will pay me $20 to remove a link I gave them for free.


Sounds good!
But why stop there?

And for another $20 I'll put up a link to your competitor.

:)

4serendipity

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 11:31 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

getting your ranks back without using inorganic links is problematic for most since most have never considered how to develop organic links.


I think you're hitting at the root that many are having. I think there needs to be a philosophical shift away from old link-building strategies.

Sgt_Kickaxe

WebmasterWorld Senior Member sgt_kickaxe us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 2:45 am on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think Google needs to stop informing us about sites we do not own, who has time to police the web?

If site B is linking to my site with what looks like a shady link let them get the message.

If I have outgoing links on my site that look shady to Google then THAT is what I want to know about. They've got it backwards.

tedster

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



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 5:13 am on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Could Google simply ignore those links?

In fact, they often do and they have been doing it for quite a while. I've seen many sites that never had an unnatural links notification and never showed any ranking problem, even though I can clearly see a major pile of very dicey backlinks.

What I can only guess at is why Google ignorse bad links in some cases but gets their back up in other situations.

cabbie

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 5:29 am on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

This revenue model fits nicely alongside mine.
If you want me to read your email send $5.
if you want me to remove a link send $20.
If you want to link to me send $5.
Soon us savvy webmasters wont need google, except to scare all those unsavvy ones into paying

SunnyG



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 10:01 am on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I, sometimes wonder why should I change the Anchor initially when I am providing relevant and unique info. what I anchor text for. If users esp. search engines won't understand what this page all about then how a web-page come in search results ?

SMO users ? They gonna tell users/search engines this page is about shoes, books, etc. etc.

Why people are behind of link modifications. Definitely spammy links should be removed but I feel others are fine.

bwnbwn

WebmasterWorld Senior Member bwnbwn us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 4:32 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Got a request from a new SEO guru the other day. He requested I take the links off our site pointed at specific landing pages on their site. It is an application button that goes to their application. Hmm bro I don't think that is a wise thing to do since your paying us for the traffic and the links are nofollow anyway.
I wonder if they even check the code to see how the link is rel="nofollow" is a pretty easy
check.

incrediBILL

WebmasterWorld Administrator incredibill us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 5:15 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I will have to charge you $20 for me to take the time out from other important work to undo the work you originally asked me to do.


I coined the phrase in another thread, but here again we have another example of Blackmail SEO

I also think $20 is too low as many have an hourly rate of $50 and by the time you read an email, write an email, locate and remove the links, verify your page still functions and you didn't accidentally break it. Depending on how efficient you are it could only take 5 minutes or even less using form letters, etc. but I only bill a minimum of one hour for contract labor. :)

Just occurs to me someone could run around using a prepaid VISA debit card and pay to remove a competitors links claiming Google is complaining about them and destroy someone's link campaign for a small fee.

Thanks Google, a new way to game the system :)

helleborine

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4545842 posted 2:02 pm on Feb 21, 2013 (gmt 0)

I'm with IncrediBILL on this one, link removal starts at $100. I anxiously await your requests!

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