Over / Under the Radar Link Buys

PageRank 9 links cheap!!!! Or maybe not ;)

If a market inefficiency is so great that people focus specifically on that inefficiency then the inefficiency is going to dry out pretty quickly. Either the undervalued commodity is going to have is supply quickly exhausted or the market maker which lends the value to the commodity will remove the value. Within any topic or vertical there are ideas and sites focused on those ideas which will have high authority but limited income opportunity. Conversely the sites focused on maximizing revenue generation typically are nowhere near as authoritative. So they either have to create secondary sites, launch viral marketing campaigns, or hunt for authority where they can buy it at an affordable price.

For example, there are lots of sports equipment and sports collectible sites online which have limited authority. There are, however, authoritative sites about each and every sport. It looks like this site, from 2000 with about 20 edu links, DMOZ listings, and Yahoo! Directory listings allows you to sponsor pages for a year for $5 each.
I probably would not sponsor a few pages on that site. I would be more inclined to spend a few grand to buy exclusive sitewide sponsorship rights.

Not all of the sites are going to suggest a price for a reference on their sites (and in fact most webmasters are quite unaware of the value of their content and their link authority). You may have to hunt around to find those kinds of sites. But if you think of sites that

  • would have high authority; and

  • not be noticed by most of your competitors; and
  • almost no income

those will be the sites that will give you great long-term link value. Jim Boykin is great at finding those types of sites.

If you think that getting a link off the site which creates the standards that run the WWW is sneaky or that nobody will find it then you are probably wasting your money, and getting a bunch of links from smaller and more related sites is a better investment, especially in long term. The big pages tend to get spotted quickly, fill up with spammy links quickly, and either algorithmically handeled or manually handeled. I learned that in the past when I did a Mozdev donation.

Some people have assumed that I am a huge spammer because I donated to the W3C, but I have donated to many projects where I didn't donate just for a link, and am not ashamed to admit that I supported the WWW.

I was (and still am) a big fan of donating for links, but have generally got much lazier on that front recently because recently it has been far cheaper to create interesting content or tools to build up the authority of this site. it has enough exposure to where if my ideas are well implemented they are going to spread.

I however do sometimes make spammy pages or buy spammy links. Some are just to joke or play around or test the market. Others are dual purpose or passive lead generation streams (for instance on this page I am not selling anything to do with eBay, I just wanted to test the authority of my other blog and a number of people who find that page end up connecting it to this site and buying my book). I don't actively solicit most of my spammy links (like the ones on the splogs about wall clocks), but what does it really matter if you have a few spammy links if you also have tons of legitimate ones? If getting a few low quality links gets people to talk about you does it also increase your exposure and help build good free secondary links? Sometimes, methinks ;)

Who is the moral authority to determine relevancy of a link or a search result? Are their guidelines anything deeper than self promotion? And why does their opinion matter? So long as whatever you do is enjoyable and profitable and you weight the risk to reward ratios I don't think much else matters.

Published: July 10, 2006 by Aaron Wall in seo tips


July 13, 2006 - 7:07am

I think it is the intent that counts.

I know, its becoming a cliche thanks to Google, but it is a relevant approach.

Take your WWW donation, for instance. You donated to support the WWW and got a link. Good for you. You then have chosen other sites with the cause you may wish to donate and get a link. Good for you.

Spammers, on the contrary, will donate to everyone without choosing websites, thus wasting resources (money and time, which is money) on irrelevant links. They will also spend them on useless links, hidden in the footers on unrelevant websites as well. So they don't get much out of their link building strategy. You do.

So, got a PR9 link Real Cheap? 8)

July 13, 2006 - 2:41pm

Is it the intent that counts? Who decides the intent?

I have bought many links with the intent to spam, but the W3C one was not one that I thought would go unnoticed and carry weight for a long time.

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