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They have done this be developing hundreds of blog sites and populating these blogs with links back to their ecomm site. As well as dumping links to their site on thousands of other blogs.
For using this black hat technique, they have gotten number one postitons for the top money keywords in our industry.
Since they are getting all this free traffic, they are selling their products at say on 40 markup instead of the 80% which is common for this industry.
I wonder if I should submit a spam report, or do nothing figuring google will pick this up eventually, which should cause them to crash and burn.
Currently I not to worried, as they may be good at spam, but they don't have a clue when it comes to creating trust.
ie. no phone number, no address, no shipping policy, etc. etc.
The topic is whether blog spam is still working.
If their main site they drive link juice to has nothing wrong done on site you just can't touch them. End.Of.Whining!
File one report a day and still nothing will be done. You can learn one thing from this. If it works for them it should work for you.
Think about it.
PS: In real life I'm all for justice and stuff like that but as long as Google is the one judging us on the internet in terms of SEO I'd say do anything as long as you don't directly SEO attack other sites (as in negative SEO)! You may play by the rules but Google and the rest like money more then they like you. There's always another SEO / webmaster to fill in the space left by your leaving the SEO playground.
And you can take that to the bank! (quote from a Steven Segal movie)
I agree with Wheel. " You do none.."
What is the point to be after some one creative. After all, Google will never reward you either for reporting to them. It is better to mind your own business.
[edited by: tedster at 4:24 am (utc) on Mar. 26, 2008]
Yes, I did. I missed it on the site I did some garbage link building techniques on that's ranking a year or two later. I missed it on the serp's in my industry for the people that are ranking solely on paid links - and have been for 6 months. The point to take away here is that many of these low end link building techniques work in a sustained fashion. Spam reporting to Google in many cases doesn't work well at all. So in response to the OP, yes, stuff like blogs still work great, the timeframe for them to rank does have an end date but it's mid term, not short term, and spam reporting is generally ineffective.
People are also equating low end link building techniques with spammy content - the two are not neccessarily related.
Martinibuster, a link building authority, commented in another thread that reciprocals still work. That's something I've never done and wouldn't do on a clean site. But if it gets me easy rankings on some long tail traffic and I put up some good content, then business wise it seems like something worth trying - I might make some money, and worst case I learn more about what my competitors are doing. It's also possibl that I find out that recips also bring in traffic to my site - something I've denied without proof for years. That's something that seems like a smart idea to me. It's a struggle knowing where the grey/white line is these days - and it's moving. That's one thing I've learned - Google's moving the line on where white hat is so I think it's better to work based on what works (short, mid, or long term) rather than working based on some moral or ethical alignment with Google who's shown they're prone to changing what's 'right'.
There's also nothing stopping my from ranking using recips and putting up good content on that site. I could argue that doing so makes the serps better.
A profile of blogs that don't work leaves a trace network [ footprint ] with a bad smell. I recall some publicity about a particular network of low quality posters a while back. And I've seen the effects.
Still, folks with a slash and burn strategy may benefit. Other's may have to be a little more cautious if they want long term sites. Despite what's said here , you wouldn't put your multi billion dollar company branded site under the slash and burn strategy - the downside by even a small percentage is risky business. As we can attest to from the BMW Motor Vehicle site saga a few years back when an ambitious SEO team got carried away with some black hat stuff. I'm not being "moral" [ there are no morals to this ] - just commercial where it makes sense.
And i think that Google has "no morals" - just a "it makes good business sense " approach where good and bad quality blog post links are concerned. They have some ability to weed out the bad ones as i mentioned.
[edited by: Whitey at 8:34 pm (utc) on April 4, 2008]
Its really hard to get a PR of over 3 in our UK niche market, most sites have a few hundred backlinks, so I was surprised to see a page ranking at #4 for our main target term with a PR5. When I investigated further I see that they have (on Yahoo Site explorer) just short of 15,000 backlinks. How the heck did they do that I thought.
There are thousands each from a small number of not directly on theme blogs, including photoblogs with minimal text content. And there's me worrying about out sponsorship of our local community web site!
If by blog spam you mean sitewide text links as "sponsor" or "supporting site" then yes I think it does work (at this moment in time) and it is an easy way to buy Pagerank. I notice that the blogs that are successfully selling their Pagerank seem to have quite a few supporters and maybe that is part of the mask that Google can't see past.
This type of thing really p*ss** me off because I can't risk it. Our web site is mission critical so we have to fight these guys who have much less to lose with one hand tied behind our backs.
I do have other sites. I have one that's #18 for the term that my main site is #3 for. I'm concerned about pushing that too hard in case it gets noticed, I have it sitting there ready for a push if something really bad happens to our main site.
I should also say that our main site ranks very well for the second tier of important terms.
I've spent the weekend mapping out what I'm going to do. Rather than following grey and black hat tactics I'm going to do lots and lots of white hat stuff. Plus spend even more on Adwords, once I've finished trying to put pressure on my Adwords rep to help us boot the spammers.
It appears this black hat technique involves identical web pages across multiple .tld's and across multiple Class A and Class B domains. You would think the duplicate content penalty would pick up on this, but it does not.
Believeing in business ethics and the fact that everybody should start from a level playing field, and build their business on hard work, and not by deception, I have submitted a detailed spam report on the offending site.
It may get ignored, but eventually Google will see this hole and close it. However evil rules, when good people do nothing.
And for all those who requested by sticky mail, the offending site, Im sorry, but to protect my business interests, and to speak freely on this board about confidential information, I need to keep my business niche confidential. Releasing the offending site would reveal to much detail. Sorry.
Related to the above. I have started to notice some of my competitors with posts on blogs the general subject of which, and geographical location of which, do not seem to be appropriate. On closer inspection I suspect that they are doing "Pay per Post".
Does this work?
Are there any risks?
Can Google detect it?
>>>Are there any risks?
Yes. Google may decide to penalize (though this has risks for Google as well).
>>>Can Google detect it?
Yes. They dropped PR to 0 of many blogs they caught selling blog posts.
It's straightforward. Evaluate the potentail rewards of your first question against the potential risks of the second two.