Monday, 17 August 2009

How Many Backlinks Are Safe?

Backlinks are crucial to search engine optimization and majority of niche marketers are busy trying to get as many backlinks as possible.

But we know that the pattern with which our links increase is one of the factors that the search engines, mainly Google, monitor to determine sites that are artificially inflating their search engine position

The dates that links appear can also be used to detect
"spam," where owners of documents or their colleagues
create links to their own document for the purpose of
boosting the score assigned by a search engine. A
typical, "legitimate" document attracts back links

So what does this all mean?

Does this mean that a sudden rise in the number of backlinks pointing to your site will automatically earn your site a penalty in the search engines? Or worse still get you banned?

Personally, I do not think so.

Let's think about things logically.

There have been a large number of very successful launches in the affiliate marketing niche. And when these programs first launch, a lot of us, affiliate marketers, get on the band wagon of promoting it avidly.

On our blogs, our websites, forum signatures and all what not.

Resulting in a sudden rise in the number of links pointing to the launch site.

But I honestly have never come across the scenario where these sites have been banned or penalized.

You may argue that some affiliate marketers use no follow in their affiliate links, but the majority do not.

A large spike in the quantity of back links may signal
a topical phenomenon (e.g., the CDC web site may
develop many links quickly after an outbreak, such as
SARS), or signal attempts to spam a search engine (to
obtain a higher ranking and, thus, better placement in
search results) by exchanging links, purchasing links,
or gaining links from documents without editorial
discretion on making links. Examples of documents that
give links without editorial discretion include guest
books, referrer logs, and "free for all" pages that let
anyone add a link to a document.

What does this all mean?

To me, it implies that the search engines will note a sudden spike in links but before any action is taken, they try to see if there is any plausible explanation for the 'link flurry'

So the question remains.

How many backlinks are safe? Or to paraphrase the question, how man backlinks can
you generate to your web pages in a short period of time without getting banned?

The answer is the number really does not seem to matter

What matters is

  • The consistency with which backlinks to your web pages occur. This really means that if your site gets 100 new backlinks a day and it consistently gets about that number everyday then you should be okay as long as the links are varied in source and do not all come from sites the public can manipulate

  • The type of sites that these links are coming from. As the document says, the type of link is also crucial. If all the links are from the comments portion of blogs, then I think it would be fair for Google to assume you are a spammer. But if the links come from a variety of places e.g. within the body of articles, forums, other webmasters sites [also within the body of
    the content] then the likelihood of being perceived as artificial inflation of search engine rankings is less likely

What do you think?


Make Money Online said...

Nice read! But I have had a site get banned from google for getting too many back links. I hired a search engine optimization company and I think they did something to get my site banned.

ami said...

Hi, Make money online and thanks for dropping by and sharing your experience

I think that it is probably where the links were coming from that was the problem rather than the number of backlinks you have.

Also the linking pattern may have raised a red flag