Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 107.20.75.63

Forum Moderators: open

Message Too Old, No Replies

in-links using guestbooks?

     
6:40 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:May 18, 2003
posts:11
votes: 0


Hope this is the correct forum...

I came across a website ranked #1 and I noticed that it has hundreds of incoming links coming from guestbooks. In fact, it looks like each guestbook entry is identical as if the posts were automated. My question is: wouldn't Google frown upon this? Does Google detect this sort of thing? Would Google punish the website for this?

Thanks,
Mark

6:47 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 6, 2003
posts:48
votes: 0


Does Google detect this sort of thing? Would Google punish the website for this?

I posed this same question to GoogleGuy and his answer was that Google doesnt punish or penalize sites with links in guestbooks, rather, those links in guestbooks are no longer counted towards any PageRank. If you had 200 in-bound links from guestbooks and 5 other in-bound links ... Google would only look at the 5 other in-bound links when ranking your site.

Regards

6:52 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Feb 11, 2002
posts:450
votes: 0


Hi Mark,

A warm welcome to WW.

Google may have/develop a way to discount the value of such links but I doubt very much that they would punish the website in question. Otherwise anyone could do the same to get a competitors site banned or penalised.

Hopefully you'll get some more feedback from others members with *loads* more google expertise than me.

Smiley

6:59 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:Nov 8, 2002
posts:29
votes: 0


Guestbook links may not count for PR but they still have a big impact.

On one keyword phrase we try to optimize for the #1 site has about 176 backlinks (about a dozen from internal and some different external). The rest are guestbook links linking with the keyword phrase to the #1 site. The page doesn't look to be that optimized but they have the #1 position because I believe of the inbound link text from the guestbooks.

7:05 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 6, 2003
posts:48
votes: 0


The page doesn't look to be that optimized but they have the #1 position because I believe of the inbound link text from the guestbooks.

This will change very soon. The new algo Google is testing with Domonic this month no longer counts guestbook links.
The sites you see in the rankings that only have guestbook links will dissapear soon.

7:07 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:Nov 8, 2002
posts:29
votes: 0


Actually the site I am referring to is #1 on *all* of the new indexes sj, fi, etc.

It is not #1 on www...

7:14 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 6, 2003
posts:48
votes: 0


As GoogleGuy said ... spam filters have not been applied to the new indexes yet ... perhaps the guestbook links are factored in with those filters that have yet to be added.
8:14 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:June 20, 2002
posts:4652
votes: 0


mrbrad you are grasping at straws. Despite what Google Guy said, sites that utilize guestbook links are right here and right now doing extremely well across the board. They are getting clicks right this second. Google has shown no evidence in its history that it can do what you say. Maybe these sites ranked #1 will disappear, but this bizarro algorithm is built on a foundation that essentially all links are the same. For what you are suggesting to be possible Google will have to simultaneously ignore pagerank and discern what all the guestbooks are.

Wake me when that happens. Right now guestbooks, free for all links and domain name rule the world because Google has chosen for that to be so. We'll see what happens next but it is unlikely that this trash rose to the surface just before being skimmed off.

8:45 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Mar 12, 2001
posts:1150
votes: 0


>>...sites that utilize guestbook links are right here and right now doing extremely well across the board ...<<

And sites that DON'T utilize guestbook links are right here and right now ALSO doing extremely well across the board, so I don't think anyone can draw a valid conclusion UNLESS someone can produce a site that is #1 AND has inbounds from guestbooks ONLY.

9:13 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


> In fact, it looks like each guestbook entry is identical as if the posts were automated.

Almost certainly it was. I just checked, and Google is *still* running that Adword by a company that for a fee advertises they'll spam any URL you want to 300,000 guestbook. YES, that's right. They claim they'll spam 300K guestbooks for the money you pay them.

>My question is: wouldn't Google frown upon this?

Not enough that they won't take your Adword money if you run a guestbook spamming company.

>Does Google detect this sort of thing?

According to Googleguy yes. However, any algo filter can be flawed and not filter some. Almost all guestbooks could be spotted because they are using off the shelf software that has obvious signature characteristics. However, if some HTML coder hacked together his own home grown guestbook software, this sort of one off code could be very difficult for an algo to spot.

>Would Google punish the website for this?

If so, then paying $130 to that company I mentioned before that will spam 300,000 guestbooks for that fee is all it will take to hose any competitor. Anyone wanna chip in so we can add the URL [microsoft.com...] to 300,000 guestbooks? ;) Europeforvisitors, a regular poster here, posted that a competitor spammed a ton of guestbooks with his URL. I noticed that one of my enemies, my guess main nemesis from Usenet I flame a lot who likes e-mail bombing me every week or so through proxies, spammed my URL to a few dozen guestbooks. Looks like my enemy is to dumb to actually write a guestbook spamming bot himself, and too cheap to spend $130 to spam my URL to thousands of guestbooks. If Google starts punishing websites for guestbook links, expect to see massive guestbook spamming become common practice against competitors, and also by people who for the old fashioned reasons of spite, malice and revenge do this with URLs of sites of people they don't like. For years people have been sending mass spam e-mails pretending to be the competition to get a competitor's website hosting yanked. There is even a phrase for this practice: doing a "joe job" on someone. Hopefully spamming competitor's URLs to do a "joe job" on them with search engines won't become the wave of the future. :(

9:52 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 8, 2003
posts:103
votes: 0


We aren't supposed to post sites but I know of a few sites that ONLY have guestbook links that rank #1 for 1 word terms.
10:05 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:Feb 9, 2002
posts:21
votes: 0


Hello everyone,

Just enjoying the steamy hot, sunny weather here in beautiful, crime-free Houston ...especially since atmospheric smoke from a fire down Mexico has cleared up.

As for the guestbook issue, allow me to add my two cents worth. I do contract SEO work for a number of sites and industries, and up to this point (today), guestbooks have indeed provided keyphrase positioning weight for us on Google.

I've had best results using a ratio of about 5% ...that is, posting 5 guestbook inbounds (on industry relevant sites which have guestbooks) per 100 reciprocals with other webmasters.

Well that's it for now.

...Happy birthday Dorothy! Hope you liked the new thong babe ...pass the baby oil.

11:03 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:May 18, 2003
posts:11
votes: 0


Thanks for the help guys.

And for what my input is worth, I can assure you that I've found #1 ranking sites for fairly competetive websites that soley have incoming links from guestbooks.

-Mark

11:30 pm on May 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


>We aren't supposed to post sites but I know of a few sites that ONLY have guestbook links that rank #1 for 1 word terms.

>And for what my input is worth, I can assure you that I've found #1 ranking sites for fairly competetive websites that soley have incoming links from guestbooks.

OK, prove it to me by stickymail, and I'll post here if I find this to be true. The condition of this challenge is as follows:

#1) These must be 1 or 2 word searches without question marks, and must be the #1 site listed.

#2) This must be a search term that is commercially competitive, and that likely some dishonest SEO would actually want to cheat to be #1 for. For example, using SEO techniques I could probably get to #1 for "coelacanth". The reason being none of the sites about this fish are bothering in the least with SEO. It's easy with SEO to do well with search words that other sites score high on only by accident, not design.

#3) The site must on alltheweb.com show no backlinks other than guestbooks. Google with the link: command only shows pages with a PR of 4 or higher. It is possible that while Google shows only guestbooks in the backlinks for a page, it has backlinks which are <PR4.

Should anyone prove this to my satisfaction, I will publicly post acknowledging that they have met the challenge.

12:01 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 8, 2003
posts:103
votes: 0


rfgdxm1,

You used to seem so rational and insightful. I really feel the latest events have rattled you a bit. Endless high strung rants...

Why would anyone care at all about you "acknowledging publicly" that they have met YOUR challenge. It's quite laughable. No offence, but you are taking yourself WAY too seriously these days.

12:14 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


My point parabola is simply that *someone* independent confirm this is so. It wouldn't have to be me. One of the moderators here would be even better for this. The problem is that we have people posting all it takes to get to #1 is guestbook links on competitive searches, but the board rules here don't allow them to post the proof. Thus the only way the general readers here can know if guestbook spamming is seriously warping Google SERPs is if there is a consensus amongst regulars here that it is. I have never seen a site hit #1 on a really competitive SERP with just guestbook links, and I am calling the bluff.

OK, let's do it this way. I challenge anyone to post this proof publicly to alt.internet.search-engines on Usenet *for all the world to see*. Don't stickymail me. Post it to Usenet. Everyone here can access Usenet using [groups.google.com....] This way nobody has to take my word. The proof will be public record.

2:20 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 6, 2003
posts:48
votes: 0


Google will have to simultaneously ignore pagerank and discern what all the guestbooks are.

This would be rather easy using a simple logic such as:

IF page title contains "guestbook"
THEN ignore links on page for PageRank

It wouldnt take long for guestbook script developers to spread the word about having "guestbook" in your GuestBook's page title to fend off spammers just looking for Google PR.

2:28 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 18, 2003
posts:618
votes: 0


Hi, newbie here again. ;)

I wonder if message boards, discussion forums, Yahoo Groups messages/links ... are considered to be similar to guestbooks. Most of these are moderated and therefore are somewhat immune to spam. However, one could fill these too with links to desired sites, even though not of the order of 300K!

I am asking this because I have seen results from Yahoo Groups and other message boards appear in my Google searches. Will Google filter these out in future or should I too start posting messages?

2:34 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


Wouldn't work mrbrad. To start, this would also blow away all the sites offering webmasters guestbooks that they can install on their site. Google needs to be able to identify pages that actually *are* guestbooks, and not just about them. Also, there probably are many sites that call their guestbooks something else, such as "visitor's comments", etc. If Google did this, then the game would be to find and sign these "stealth" guestbooks. The way to do this is to algorithmically spot pages that are guestbooks regardless of what they are called. Given that most guestbooks out there are running off the shelf scripts, I could write the code that would spot 99% of all of them. The problem would be spotting the 1% using home rolled code, or code used by such a small number of sites that it hasn't been spotted yet.
2:41 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


>I wonder if message boards, discussion forums, Yahoo Groups messages/links ... are considered to be similar to guestbooks. Most of these are moderated and therefore are somewhat immune to spam.

Not necessarily so. For example, I commonly post on a website bulletin board with a link to my main site in the .sig. This site is on topic to what that board is about. And, what about boards that are moderated they don't care what the topic of the .sig, so long as the poster is a regular and obviously not there just to spam? Also, a lot of website message boards aren't agressively moderated like Webmasterworld. Posting links occasionally would be tolerated. Particularly if it was well disguised. Consider if I posted on one "Hey guys, take a look at this bozo's site: [mydomain.com"....] Where mydomain.com happens to be *my* site, and they don't realize I am really dropping it for search engine spiders.

2:49 am on May 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 18, 2003
posts:618
votes: 0


Thanks. Does it mean that I should start posting on relevant message boards with my urls?

Secondly, I wonder why the Google Groups is not spidered (but Yahoo Groups is spidered) because I find some of those groups to be very relevant to my site.

6:36 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 10, 2003
posts:58
votes: 0


Hello Fellow webmasters!

I have just finish making my 70 page web site. It’s main keyword is <key word>. All the 70 pages are targeted to a keyword adding suffixes & prefixes to its main keyword. (Ex: <free blue key word>, <red key word widget>, <blue fuzzy key word>, …)

In the past three months (I’m just 3months old when it comes to SEO) I’ve red all the articles on SEO @ webmasterworld including Brett_Tabke. I have optimize my site to perfection. All of my pages contain more than 300 words H1, H2 tags, alt, keyword domain, keywords in url’s & files etc.

Now the only problem that I have is my inbound linking campaign! As I don’t have my own unique content (I use ifriends Affiliate program) I think submitting to OPD is pointless. Also I don’t have the kind of money to get a priority submission for yahoo directory or to buy auto submitting software in order to get links from directories as I come from a very poor country in south Asia.

At the moment the only links that I’m getting is links from <key word> guestbook’s (PR 4-6), but will I be penalized for getting hundreds of links from guestbook’s? if not will it be better if I submit the guestbook URL to google after signing it? Other than this from where cam I get good inbound links?

Also I have 13 web pages @ geocities under “<key word>” category with PR 3 – 5 so if l link all of these pages to my main site will I be penalized for spamming?
<snip>

Help Me Brothers! There is nothing that I wouldn’t do to get in to that Top 10!

new_BEE
Colombo – Sri Lanka.

[edited by: ciml at 6:52 pm (utc) on May 10, 2003]
[edit reason] No specifics thanks! [/edit]

7:05 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ciml is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:June 22, 2001
posts:3805
votes: 2


I think a lot of people have this problem. You're in an industry where not evryone would be happy to link to you, but you need links to do well in Google.

In my opinion, you should not need to worry about the links from guestbooks. It is true that search engines might not count those links (Google ignored guestbook links for a short while last year), but they ought not to do you any harm.

7:23 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 22, 2003
posts:109
votes: 0


You are going to have to get inbound links, or "backlinks", the old-fashioned way... you'll have to earn them.

First, try to add useful, interesting content to your site. Learn all about your subject, and provide information to your visitors. The more good content you have, the more your visitors that have other web sites are likely to want to link to you.

Second, find similar websites and write to the webmaster requesting a link. You might want to first provide a link from your website to theirs, and mention this in your letter.

Third, find directories that include your subject, and submit your site.

Over time, you will see the backlinks show up. Good luck.

By the way... it seems clear (from Googleguy's comments)that Google is moving to eliminate the value of Guestbook links. While this doesn't seem to have taken full effect yet, it will probably be in effect soon. I wouldn't waste time signing guestbooks.

7:25 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:May 12, 2002
posts:4479
votes: 0


>In my opinion, you should not need to worry about the links from guestbooks. It is true that search engines might not count those links (Google ignored guestbook links for a short while last year), but they ought not to do you any harm.

Considering Google is actually selling Adwords to a company that brags about how many guestbooks they can sign a URL using a spambot, it would be unethical for Google to penalize any site for guestbook links. A competitor could pay this company to spam their competition's URL to a thousand guestbooks, get them banned, and Google literally profiting by them doing this. Looks to me like Google currently does have in the algo to ignore guestbook links. While they still show with the link: command, for ranking purposes Google ignores them. Occasionally some sites do temporarily get somewhere by spamming guestbooks. This is because no algo is perfect. Some guestbooks might not be spottable by the algo. While Google could spot and filter all common guestbook scripts, they would miss cases where the webmaster modified the standard script such that they wouldn't recognize it. And, some websites out there are running guestbook scripts that they wrote themselves, and thus will be missed by a filter that ignores only off the shelf guestbook scripts lots of sites are running. Thus, every now and then a site will do well with guestbook links.

7:40 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Feb 17, 2003
posts:687
votes: 0


Can't you guys just let the guestbooks alone! They are not for spamming. If you have time to sign GB, why not build a few more pages for your web site!
8:01 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 11, 2003
posts:149
votes: 0


I wonder how many SEO's here sign guestbooks... hmmmmm?
8:21 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ciml is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:June 22, 2001
posts:3805
votes: 2


Well, I'm pretty sure that the last time I signed a guestbook (other than one belonging to a friend or colleague) was before Google existed. My name's Calum, and I'm a content junkie.
8:38 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Administrator

WebmasterWorld Administrator rogerd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:Aug 2, 2000
posts:9685
votes: 0


Calum, you'll be interested in CCA, Content Creators Anonymous... They have a twelve-step program for people who are compelled to keep adding pages to their websites. ;)
8:48 pm on May 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 10, 2003
posts:58
votes: 0


Thanks for helping me & its nice to get to know you DVD!

I don’t have my own unique content, all of my 70 pages points to an affiliate website, I’m in the adult industry, my site not even listed by google. As ciml mentioned who will ever give me a link even if I link back?

My question is this if I make an adult webmaster resource page witch link to my home page (www.adult-webmaster-resource.my-keyword-domain.com) & add useful interesting content relating to my keyword. Also this pages doesn’t contain any add’s but only links to my home page!

1. Is it possible to submit this sub domain to OPD instead of the mydomain.com. Is there a chance getting listed?

2. I'm planning to give away a free CD’s to everyone who links this resource page. (In our country any CD is just 1-2 $, form Britney Spears to front page 2002). What do you guys think will this plan work?

This 260 message thread spans 9 pages: 260