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If you are buying legitimate placements on sites highly relevant to your own that benefit your end user, the quality of the link and the site it's on will naturally throttle the volume to be under 100 a month.
If the links are coming from sites that are borderline with regards to relevancy and volume, the bar drops and you should be very careful.
Think quality, not quantity.
I would rather have 5 quality links from highly relevant sites that are sending me real traffic rather than a much higher number from sites with much less relevancy and usefulness for my end user.
Search engines like google can spot artificial link building a mile away. Don't give the search engines a reason to penalize your site.
Buy 1000 links at once and your most likely a target for disaster.
Google seems to look for patterns in aquiring links.
Search engines like google can spot artificial link building a mile away.
It's debatable whether the above is true or not. There are some who will deny the above quotes based on their personal experience.
Can it be that it depends on how you do it? Could it be there are more variables than the ones listed above? I know a guy who is selling links from a huge inventory, dropping links from within content. Will his clients be caught?
I know another guy who is selling dot edu links from established and authoritative high PageRank pages. Will his clients be caught?
What about sites that acquire thousands of links through becoming newsworthy or diggworthy?
It's arguable whether the above is going on or not.
I think a little of both is always going on. Google catches some but not all cases like this. In rechecking a fairly spam prone set of serps recently, most of the sites with massive acquired links from a few months ago had been kicked out, but different ones, also with acquired links, had taken their place.
what if i have an old established 'website' with a good alexa and an authority 'blog' decides to pick me up? this blog has 40,000 indexed pages and is three times the authority of me. if he decides to place my website link on his blog sitewide and chooses some relevant but random link text, will Google treat that link with any suspicion considering the number of pages it's being added too? to me that isn't slow link building but then again, it's only one site. how would they know whether i bought the link or not? the blog content and site content are in the same vertical, both site and blog are big authorities....