Planet13 - 1:54 am on Mar 8, 2012 (gmt 0)
Hi ya, realmaverick:
Just to chime in - and I acknowledge that my opinion might be worthless - but here it goes:
"I paid for 150 PR 1-5 links, pointing to this page, with 3 rather targeted terms."
I think the key thing in this is the word "paid" for them.
If you can buy them, so can your competitors. So can lots of other sites (not related to your field) that have them link to their sites.
If those blogs link out to a bunch of whack sites, then their ability to pass page rank is probably not that strong.
I am going to go out on a limb and say that those links probably won't have much positive value, and as you found out, can have a lot of negative value.
Also, what types of links are pointing TOWARD those PR 1 to PR 5 blogs?
I was approached once by someone who was selling links. They showed me the page that my link would appear on. It was PR 4. A quick check of the backlinks showed they were all KRAPPY backlinks pointing to their site.
Anyway, I just think that any link that your competitor's can replicate just as easily is not going to be all that beneficial.
Also, what was the time interval for those links to be posted? Was it in one day? Were they posted over several days? Over several weeks? Over several months? Over several years?
I think most SEO people will try to build the links all at once, and I don't think that is going to appear very natural to google.
Anyway, hope this helps.