Digital Insights

Why Cheap SEO or Link Building Can Hurt Your Website

Published: August 24, 2015

Incredibly, they are still a lot of unscrupulous marketers out in the marketplace who like to treat SEO and link building like a game of cat and mouse. They start the game by building a series of cheap SEO or links using a variety of ploys to get around the algorithms used by the world’s top search engines. The goal is to achieve the highest possible ranking on search engines such a Google, Bing and Yahoo without getting caught.

The Scam of Spam Links

Up until a few short years ago, search engines viewed the quantity of links as being representative of a site’s popularity. Based on this approach, companies began to realize they could set up a group of cheap websites and use standard keywords to link each and every one of them with their target website. As long as a company had the manpower to sit there and create sites and subsequent spam links all day, the company’s site would shoot up through the search engine rankings, creating even more traffic. Spam links became so popular that some companies offered to initiate the linking process for a small fee. However, the window of opportunity to try these and other ploys began closing several years ago when search engine programmers became aware of the game and shifted algorithm emphasis away from quantity of links to quality of links.

Bad Links Versus Good Links

It’s worth noting that many industry experts recommend not using SEO to build links because it seldom creates the desired result. Instead, they recommend letting the link building process happen naturally by providing really good content. If a you as a business owner are committed to link building, these same experts warn you to stay away from bad links, which raises the question what are bad and good links?

Bad Links

– As search engines began looking for quality links, sloppy links began getting ignored. Today, bad links are the ones that seem random in nature while pointing towards sites that would be deemed irrelevant. Example: A site that sells plumbing supplies in America linking with a site that sells concert tickets in Brazil would be irrelevant.

Good Links

– Conversely, good links have two main characteristics. First, they have relevancy. A site selling concert tickets linked with a site promoting a rock band would be relevant. Secondly, the quality of the site being linked to carries weight as well. If your site is linking to company with a solid reputation, you earn extra points.

Why Cheap SEO or Link Building Can Hurt Your Website

For companies that believe they can still scam search engine providers, the game is starting to get a bit pricey while rarely providing the desired results. As a result of better ranking algorithms, trying to game Google or Yahoo with cheap SEO and/or link building has become a risky proposition that also stands to do more damage than good to one’s website. How does it hurt one’s website?

1. Reputation Damage – Most search engines now provide a tool for others to report websites that seem to be participating in spamming efforts. If your competitors get a whiff of this kind of behavior, you can bet they will report you. If too many competitors and related sites catch on, your reputation and the reputation of your site could be permanently damaged.

2. Could Get the Site De-Indexed From a Search Engine – If you value having any standing at all with important search engines, then you don’t want to get caught trying to game them. They have the ability to punish and de-index (ban) you, which renders your company invisible to the world. Without search engines, you have nothing but word of mouth traffic and that isn’t enough to sustain most companies.

3. Poor Content Looks Unprofessional – Cheap SEO usually translates into poor quality writing. If your content is low-quality, potential customers have plenty of other choices and will certainly look elsewhere for a company that seems more professional.

4. Ineffective SEO – The whole point of including SEO is to improve your search engine ranking. Cheap SEO is usually sloppy and outdated resulting in you not getting the kind of traffic you need for your website in order to generate leads and subsequently revenues.

5. Wasted Space – Anytime you try to cut corners or go around link building rules, your website ends up being a mess because it exists for all the wrong reasons. In the end, your website ends up being a waste of time and effort.

Natural Link Building

In the story of the tortoise and the hare, the winner was the one who chose to be methodical and meticulous. If you build a site with great content and effective SEO, they will come. Over time, you will build a series of strong links that will get you the site rankings you desire without the risk of losing everything. In order to increase site traffic, you can also reach out to related sites for cross-linking or go to social media and make an effort to promote your site. The reality is shortcuts don’t work anymore.


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