netmeg - 6:01 pm on Aug 14, 2013 (gmt 0)
If you pay a company to build links for you, aren't these links “artificial” since your paying for the “link building” service to improve Google rankings? I thought Google was against anything other than freely earned/given links? Appreciate your insight!
Not necessarily. For example, a long time ago, a client asked me to spend several hours a month just looking for relevant linking opportunities in his industry, because he didn't have time himself (nor know exactly how to search for them) Things like industry directories, newsletters, etc. That could qualify as linkbuilding, but it wasn't really link buying; pretty much all I did was find the people and sites, and make them aware that the client's website existed and might be a good resource for related products and services.
I don't really do any of that any more, but if you engage a link building service, they should be willing to tell you exactly what their process is for building the links, and ideally it's something you'd do yourself if you have the time and/or expertise - i.e. promote your site or business. In my opinion.
To answer the question posed in the title of this post, my answer would be - link away, but don't use keyword anchor text. Easy peasy.