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Found Agency ranking demotion: What about "SEO by" links?

     
1:21 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Google recently booted Found Agency from first to 52nd on the "search engine optimization" search results ladder. Apparently Found used some Black Hat techniques and got caught. But if you're smart enough to get to #1 in such a hotly contested category as SEO, doesn't that make you a dangerous foe to Google?
3:19 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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



<spliced from another location >

Leading Aussie SEO company the Found Agency has been featured in the local press - The Australian [theaustralian.news.com.au] and there have been some comments about it in some blogs. Some people have referred to the practice of using a hit counter on thousands of sites (with a link to the Found Agency) "black hat". That's too strong a term for a fairly common tactic to get lots of links for little effort.

All that has happened IMO is that links from irrelevant topic sites are ignored and have been for some time. The recent ranking update seems to have caught up with the quality algo.

So what is going to happen to the rankings of all the SEO companies that have planted a "Search Engine Optimisation by Blah SEO" link on every customer's home page? Are links from doctors, lawyers, plumbers etc relevant to the SEO topic? How is this any different from supplying a hit counter to random sites?

[edited by: tedster at 4:16 pm (utc) on May 11, 2007]

9:05 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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



I do have a quibble with the reporter's language on this. The ranking drop was caused, apparently, by a change in the way backlinks are weighted. That is not exactly a penalty as the article labels it, even though rankings to fall because of it in some cases.

Kudos to Mr. McDonald for his statement - "There are other big name agencies that have seen exactly the same thing happen to them and they're very strong businesses powering along today We always knew the risks."

No whining whatsoever.

9:15 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



IMO "SEO by" links are to be very strongly avoided, as are all links to/from the promotion industry....
[webmasterworld.com...]
9:40 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I think most of the Australian SEO industry simply relies on linking, unlike the top SEOs in the US, who focus more on content and social link building.
10:22 pm on May 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



If I was head of SEO at found right now, I would be STOKED!

For years, I would have been waiting for my house of cards to come down.... and now it had.

Get the press department to work, and tell the WORLD! YeeHAAWW!

Now, their site has thousands of new links from syndicated news articles, seo forums and blogs(some wont be rel=nofollow) each article having content about SEO, search engine optimisation, rankings, google etc, and lots of different anchor texts to the found agency site. Guaranteed Google is going to see these one way, relevant links as being worth heaps

I'm putting $100 on them getting their rankings back, within 6 months at the absolute outside, and this time, they will be rock solid.

4:07 am on May 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

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



I don't think that "Australian SEOs" (or UK/Indian/Sudanese/etc) are different. Everywhere there are SEOs who have never heard of Webmasterworld, who do not network with the best, haven't read any new ideas for some time etc. This is apparent in the content, code and backlinks of their own sites. This comes from a lack of consistent, competent training, but that is a separate thread.

Getting back on topic, about 1-2 years ago, weren't users of that PR9 hit counter site affected in some negative way?

10:06 am on May 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



"I think most of the Australian SEO industry simply relies on linking, unlike the top SEOs in the US, who focus more on content and social link building."

Seemsa very broad statement... What are you basing this on?

10:17 am on May 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



look at australia seo and uk seo nippi
1:17 pm on May 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Seemsa very broad statement... What are you basing this on?

Most SEO firms in Australia either have:

- no blog at all
- a blog they've given up on
- a blog with posts like "google adwords now yellow" or "how google ranks websites".

No real content for other SEOs to think about or link to.

Compare this to the US:

- funny drawings with robots.
- video interviews with industry pundits.
- an enormous amount of consistent blogging and content creation.

It is clear that Australian SEOs have very little focus on the long tail. Indeed, this of course benefits me as I can rank number 1 on almost any long tail term I choose - just by writing a blog post.

8:20 pm on May 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

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



So what is going to happen to the rankings of all the SEO companies that have planted a "Search Engine Optimisation by Blah SEO" link on every customer's home page? Are links from doctors, lawyers, plumbers etc relevant to the SEO topic? How is this any different from supplying a hit counter to random sites?

From what I can see, many links of this type have recently been "re-weighted" by Google - but not penalized. Sites that ranked almost exclusively through this style of backlink may FEEL like its a penalty, but it really isn't.

There's no way I would want to see "SEO by tedster" on my client's pages, by the way. Seriously, there's something to be said for remaining a bit discreet, especially during target practice periods.

10:58 am on May 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



My firm, haas a differetn tactic

We just get our clients to the top of rankings for their taraget phrases, short and long tails.

We don't bother to get rankings for phrases such as SEO. No need, we get all our business, from people who find our clients' sites.

Yes, we a re australian, but most of our clients are US based

1:05 pm on May 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Doesn't help the industry rep much....

I read they've recently sold the company and no doubt those rankings played their part, think The Photon Group might be somewhat........disappointed?

3:23 pm on May 13, 2007 (gmt 0)



[google.com...]

huge penalty too. they don't even rank for their domain name. Oh well. Even I could have told that counters are bad.

9:52 pm on May 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



The domain name penalty only just arrived, on Friday, they were ranking for it.

Photon, won't care, if the company keeps making profits.

They've got 51%, but have a deal to buy the remainder, based on profits ove the next 3 years.

11:32 pm on May 13, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



While their G traffic is down a bit they might take a look at their pages. Do our pages validate? Are copyright dates fresh? Should we suggest to harm competitors by increasing their adwords bills?
 

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