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Text ad links vs. blog links? Or neither?

12:09 am on Mar 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

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(first post from an SEO newbie)

A client of a colleague had their website created by a large design firm, but the firm took over a YEAR longer than quoted to complete their site. In the initial contract, the client was to receive 2 text ad links. Yesterday they were informed that due to Google changing its algorithm since the contract was created (over 12 months ago), that they want to switch out the text ad links with 20 blog ad links because that will get better results.

Is this information accurate? I have searched and searched for hours and just can't find anything to help me out (although I've learned quite a bit about other things in the process, so at least the time spent wasn't a complete waste). ;)

Thank you in advance.
2:01 am on Mar 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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Hi lynnieK, and welcome to WebmasterWorld.

From your description, it sounds like the design company may be selling snake oil of a kind that could get your colleague's client into some difficulty with Google. Buying or selling links that pass PageRank is a violation of Google's webmaster guidelines, and it's a risky way to start off a site....

Information about buying and selling links that pass PageRank

This could apply both to "text link ads" or to "blog ad links". (I'm making an assumption here, btw, that passing PageRank is part of the package. Why else get this type of link?)

While there's quite a bit of disagreement among some webmasters and SEOs about whether or not Google can determine if a link is purchased, there are numerous recent reports that Google has cracked down on bought links fairly hard. I suspect this particular client doesn't want to play those kinds of games.

In my experience, uninformed designers trying to "help" with SEO can be a menace. Particularly in this case, where the design company has already demonstrated its approach, I would suggest that the client not only ignore any SEO advice from the design company, but that the client should get a qualified SEO to check out the site before launch... to make sure that the design company hasn't tried other stupid tricks that might create problems.

"Blog ad links", I should note, don't sound much more promising than "text link ads" as a way to boost a site in Google. Google values freely given editorial links, given as recommendations or "votes" for a site's content, products, and services.

I suggest reading Google's webmaster guidelines as a starter, and then reading discussions here, keeping Google's perspective in mind when you read.
2:58 am on Mar 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Thank you so much for the quick response. I was definitely thinking along those lines. I will try to do a bit more research and educate myself more before I give them the information they are looking for - thank you for your thoughts on the matter. I was just having a hard time finding a good starting place!

Thanks again :)
11:01 am on Mar 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

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All dubious link acquiring tactics aside - why would "2 text links ads" be equivalent to "20 blog link ads"?

I'd suggest writing a single blog post with a couple of links in would be more than enough.

I mean, it's kind of fair enough that they get a link or two out of designing the site (particularly if it was stipulated in contract), but 20 in-context links?! That's really pushing it.
4:10 pm on Mar 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

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If they're a new site launch a press release from prweb, 24-7pressreleases, marketwire and perhaps prnewswire. Contact related blogs instead of paying to be on 20 junk ones, start building relationships on Twitter and do a wicked awesome infographic!

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