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What exactly is it and is it bad for Google ranking?



5:10 am on May 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I need some help-
My website was doing fine on google for about a month- I had only one link from a very important site but it seemed to help me get a good ranking for keyword cheating spouse. I tried doing what my competitors do to improve ranking for other keywords and I added maybe a few words that were the same color as the background. Also I used linkstoyou which all the competitors who are ranked well on google are using. After this last update my site is completely gone. I also have all my pages linking to each other from about 6 different websites that I own. Every page links to every index page I own. Is this crosslinking and does this hurt with ranking on google?
Can someon please tell me if I have messed up a good thing and If the damage is irrepairable.
11:48 am on May 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

joined:Sept 1, 2000
votes: 0

Hello SPYGUY and welcome to Webmaster World.

Sounds to me as if you have a problem on a few different levels. First, yes what you describe is crosslinking. How you go about crosslinking can be a problem and youíve described the form that has appeared to get other sites in trouble. There are some good discussions going on around here that can help you to perhaps understand this one better. Run a site search at the top of the page for crosslinking. You may want to check this discussion out. [webmasterworld.com...]

Your next problem is bigger though

I added maybe a few words that were the same color as the background

Oops! Thereís a obvious no-no. Yes, your competitor may have done this and yes, it may even be working right now for them but unless youíre looking at your site as a throw away then Iíd stay away from these tactics. Youíll find some terrific info around here that can help develop high rankings without these little tricks. I just donít see it as worth the risk.

Also I used linkstoyou

Thereís another problem. Weíve seen this happen to others who get themselves in link clubs or whatever. Look at the Reciprocal Linkage Topics forum for ideas on building your linking up without tricks or clubs that can come back to bite you.

Iím sorry on the one hand to say it but yes, you have followed a few practices that may have got you into trouble. The good thing is youíve pointed them out so that means you basically know what might have been a bit dodgy and now you can see what to do to fix it. The most important thing is youíve come to the right place to get help. The other is youíre not the only one who has been in this same boat.

If the damage is irrepairable

If youíve been busted than itís time to fix it. This may mean youíll be out for a while, nothing you can do about that because of the cycle of indexing and spidering. If I were to suggest anything it would be to go through your site and clean it up. Remove all the little hidden keywords and hidden links, clean up your code. Read Brettís excellent articles on Google both the Googleís Knowledge Base [webmasterworld.com] and Successful Site in 12 Months with Google Alone [webmasterworld.com]. Use the site search for additional information and specifics.

I would get out of the linkstoyou program and remove anything from it from your site. I would then read up about legitimate linking perhaps starting with Increasing Traffic from Reciprocal Links [webmasterworld.com], Linking Ė Whatís the big deal? [webmasterworld.com], Link Exchanges [webmasterworld.com], and probably Prompting sites to reciprocate links [webmasterworld.com], will get you started.

For crosslinking, start reading. There are lots of ideas around. Iím going to have to write up the article Iíve been promising and post it on my theories of crosslinking. There are bits and pieces of it floating around as well as some terrific ideas from other members. I agree we need to talk more about it.

So, I hope this gives you a start Spyguy. Keep posting. There are no bad questions you know and youíll sure find help around here.


12:34 pm on May 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Inactive Member
Account Expired


Thank you so much paynt.
That helps so much-
I have been completely frustrated about these things because one of my competitors is doing ALL of them and he managed to get the top 3 of 5 listings for our most important keyword. ( He has 3 sites with basically the same content - just different headers and domain names- but all very similar)

Next time I'll just try and do it the right way though- and I'll have to look into the crosslinking thing a bit because I think I am still doing that.

Thanks for your help!

1:02 pm on May 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

joined:Sept 1, 2000
votes: 0

Happy to help and I know what you mean SPYGUY, and it can be very frustrating to see your competitor doing something thatís edgy and moves them ahead of you and then you try it and get busted. Itís more likely than not that his tactics will also see him in hot water at some point. You have the opportunity now to create a site that can withstand those sways though.

Iím certainly not opposed to using every opportunity I can to get to the top and stay there. Itís just that weíre always balancing that with the risks. Good luck!