Despite what Google and SEO gurus like Eric Ward tell you, you can easily use ‘smart’ paid links to deliver the benefit of editorially earned organic links without tripping any filters or being detected as a ‘paid’ link by Google.
Let’s take two sites:
- Site A is an established authority site in its niche with page 1 rankings for almost all of its target keywords. Rich in content and links out only to quality resources. Site A is highly trusted by Google.
- Site B is a new website in the same niche, has directory links from bCentral, Yahoo! Directory, BOTW and a handful of organic links based on a press release they did on launch. The site is now 2 months old.
Site B wants to buy a link on Site A. Their webmaster uses the following process:
- Searches Site A for a set of pages that are most relevant to what Site B offers.
- Prepares two options – a new page that ‘builds’ upon this set of pages (with links to Site B along with links to authority sites in the niche), and updates one page from this set, adding almost 50% more information as well as links to Site B (and other authority sites in the niche).
- Contacts Site A, presents both options, makes an offer, and waits.
Welcome to the world of buying links ‘under the radar’.
Finding websites such as Site A is hard but not impossible.
Does this work?
Yes, because webmasters love the idea of making money from their website.
Yes, because an in-context link:
- with proper co-citation from a website that is trusted and has a ‘reputation’ of editorial citations only
- to a website that DOES NOT have a bad link profile
- is topically related to the first site
Cannot be distinguished from an editorial citation.
We know that Google says otherwise, but what Google says are guidelines for providing the best service to Google’s users as Google sees it, not law and definitely not the only way to do things.
We know that some SEO Gurus say otherwise, but then I’d ask them to see the above scenario and tell me if it’s possible that such a link can considered different from an organic, ‘earned’ link.
Your comments and thoughts are welcome.