Msg#: 4455866 posted 9:41 am on May 21, 2012 (gmt 0)
I wanted to get some clarity on the effectiveness of SEO badges(small images linked to my site from other websites) as a link building tool on Google.
The way i see it is that the badges are very popular all over the web, with most bloggers having them (which i believe has also to do with getting traffic stats than generating inbound links) but the biggest issues i see are:
1. There is no anchor text that we can put with the link. How much Page rank juice does a linked image pass vis-a-vis a normal anchor text link?
2. I believe Google does not have the image OCR technology till now to read text on the image for linked images. Would that be correct?
3. Other than for branding purposes, where would linked image badges make sense?
Msg#: 4455866 posted 12:00 pm on May 22, 2012 (gmt 0)
To be frank, if you are calling them "SEO badges" and don't fully understand the SEO impact they'll have then you're missing the point.
In terms of SEO, they'd probably count as site wide links (the badge would appear on every page), so there's diminishing returns there already. Google's algo is more than capable of identifying and discounting freely given links like this.
Regardless of the SEO impact, if you are going to the trouble of designing, implementation and promoting some kind of badge for other people's sites (a seal of a approval type thing), you should be thinking more about the traffic and branding impact that it could have. This will vastly outweigh any SEO benefit.
The crucial point though is do you have enough of an argument to persuade bloggers to display your badge? Bloggers aren't idiots - if you are doing this for SEO they will see it a mile off (there's no benefit for them). Why would anyone place your badge on their site? What does it represent? What need does it fufil? What are the benefits?
Everyone quite happily displays RSS buttons, or social media icons - these have a purpose that surfers know about.
To answer your questions;
1) AFAIK a link is a link. No anchor text, but you can add ALT text.
2) I wouldn't be surprised if they are working on something like that, but generally, it's not worth bothering about.
3) Security certificates, competions winners, traffic stats, etc. All say something about the blog, but needs to be reinforced by your own brand.
It's a good idea in principle. But in practice, it would be a lot of work for a meagre return.