GotLinks? Google Kills Reciprocal Link Networks, Even When You Don't Reciprocate...

Illuminating post by Greg Boser. One of his ex clients was ranking well in Google when they parted ways. Since then his ex client was busy entering a reciprocal link network and his rankings tanked.

the details...

the experiment:

I collected a sample of 50 keyword phrases being targeted by sites in the GotLinks directory. In order to get a balanced set of keywords, I randomly selected phrases from several different categories.

the results:

Now I don’t know about you, but one top 20 listing in Google certainly isn’t enough to convince me that the GotLinks network is a place I want my clients to be.

Greg also notes that

  • The site ranked well in Google before the links were added to the GotLinks network.

  • The ex-client never reciprocated.

and the cause of the penalty?

  • Exceeding a threshold for the total number of links developed in a specific time frame, or

  • Simply being included in a specific network.

Other reciprocal link network owners have been showing how great their networks are, pointing out how some people got 1,600 links really quickly. I think there should be a bit more honesty in the marketing, as it is clear those are not 1,600 links that will bring you to the top of Google's search results.

Greg also promises to further research competitive sabotage. Read Greg's whole post at WG.

Published: November 22, 2005 by Aaron Wall in seo tips


November 22, 2005 - 4:17pm

Please do keep us updated on this. I currently pay for links and I have been debating about the effects of it and if I should keep paying.

My experience with GotLinks has been mediocre. The network probably had no effect on my rankings in Google. I rank OK for some terms in Google but it most likely is because I already rank well before hand.

I would say this, it does have a bit of effect on MSN as proven in the test results.

November 24, 2005 - 10:13pm

I faced the exact situation with link vault. I don't think that you should worry about the paid links. You should worry for links with the same anchor. It seems that Google don't like them

September 5, 2006 - 6:14am

Most of these networks do not provide enough quality to be active enough in terms of a end user. Kind of like back end pages that rarely are visited.. At the end of the day if the main index gets a great rank the partners are not exactly going to get much of a look-in. MOst pages you`ll find that link to the partners page are right at the bottom or completly obilvious to the end user. Not exactly much of a partnership between relating websites... is it!

just check out most of these sub link partner pages... they suck in the SERP`s... as this IS the case for amateur SEO`ers it clearly shows you a bad setup. Ok for the owners of the networks it makes them something ....shame about the end user and webmasters though.

Linking strategies are a painful process... but in my own experience you just need the right list to get a top rank.... of course such information I woudn`t part with not even for 397$$$... ok maybe I would.. but hell I got to setup a site to do that in the serps RIGHT.... and then that list im selling will end up in google`s listings kind of defeating the idea behind the product ... ho hum

Look at my own arcade website.....

havent linked much at all.... no rank yet I still get sales.... so chaps dont let SE`s go to your head they are not as important as they like to think they are.... Think of them as a "one day I might get more visitors from them" but dont focus all your efforts on just SE`s.. the primitive phone still provides me with more of a consiste level of sales :0)

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