Buying links without a creditcard

It’s good to rant

I’ve probably written other stuff like this in the past, but hey, I might say it a little differently this time, so i’ll say it again and see how it comes out this time. You can’t beat a good rant! ๐Ÿ˜€

We all know already, I don’t need to preach to the converted, that amongst the inhabitants of this planet of ours that there are these people called the spam police who just so happen to have a lot of Internet user market share and naturally enough want to hold on to as much of the monetary pie that comes from this for themselves. In terms of the whole search economy they’ve been very clever indeed. What they’ve done is this. They’ve demonised the whole concept of buying links. They’ve made it seem like this hugely unfair unethical thing that gives people an unfair bump in what is supposedly an otherwise fair algorithmic system.

*non seo bod note:links drive the search economy, they push sites up the search engine rankings. Without them sites would not rank for jack

Here is the news – It isn’t a fair algorithmic system! Seriously, I shit you not! It’s based on a string of metrics that give those at the head of the race a distinct advantage. If you want to catch up then you’ve got to do things to compete. Acquiring links is one such way. However, by buying such links you are seen as manipulating the index and risk some form of penalty especially if ratted out or investigated for not spending enough on some PPC program.

See the thing here is that competitors, or those wanting to be on the 1st page of a SERP just don’t have the time to wait around for years of brand and so called ‘natural’ link building to take effect. They need to compete today, not tomorrow. They want the same competitive advantage afforded to their competitors in positions 1 – 10 of a SERP and provided no one dies and no laws are broken they’ll pretty much pay what it takes to get there. PPC won’t do it. PPC is dead, spend once money, whereas SEO is a real investment in actions and factors that will make a tangible benefit to their positions in some algorithmic link dependent system. Yet to say all that it needs to be said that it isn’t you or I that decides what is spam. The search engines decide on what is and what isn’t spam, it is as they like to say,ย  ‘their index’. Link buying isย  spam, because they say so. Yet the irony is that link buying actually improves their indices! Funny.

The search engines will often say that it’s all about safeguarding the integrity of their index or stopping those pesky evil spammers but the reality is that those arguments don’t really hold water as at the end of it all, it’s all about money and advertising and where those advertising budgets are spent. Most search engines with PPC programs believe that such money is better spent with them on their PPC programs, contributing to their bottom line. I can’t blame them for this, they are after all a business with a profit mission, just like you and I. Yet as SEO’s with clients to rank and bottom lines to maintain and an Internet to play with we SEO’s still have to get our links from somewhere. We can buy them sure, do secret deals, set up little networks that no mofo knows nothing about. We can duck and dive and bob and weave and …yeah, we can get very tired playing a cat and mouse game of hide the link source. The more competitive the niche, the more we will see others either rat us out or tittle tattle at a search forum or some moody blog somewhere. You know the drill, those link bertie small characters giving it “ooh how did these guys get to be 1, so quick so fast…” tittle tattle tittle. Shame on the lot of them really, but hey you can’t stop people saying what they want to say, especially if they are desparate for a link or two or are being pushed to do so, selling their negative SEO services to some party with a vested interest.

Anyways I digress, yet again. What I wanted to say is that it isn’t so hard to get links, and lots of them too. You just got to be more imaginative and creative than the next guy. You can linkbait your way into a link or two. Controversialise yourself (check my link bertie smalls reference earlier) and get all the jealous naysayers cooing and oohing, you can spam peoples blogs with your crappy comments and make out that you give a stuff about what they wrote on their dofollow blog or you can use your brain instead and do something productive with your life.

Don’t get me wrong; buying links is productive, there’s nothing criminal about it except in the eyes of the search engine. No one looks at what they get up to, no one is allowed to look into their activities or question their profit motives, they have carte blanche to do what they like with the online activities of the planet, yet in fairness no one is forcing people to use their platforms either, so I suppose that at some point be it through law or natural boredom with it all, it’ll balance itself out.

Damn I did it again (digressed) getting back on topic.

Writing and stimulating buzz and getting links. Shit, for some verticals it must appear to be damn damn hard.

How can anyone really get excited about some of the commercial crap out there, but there’s the rub. Speaking with a colleague the other day about some project or other I remarked something along the lines of ‘yeah right, well I find it hard to get excited about that sort of stuff (finance)’ and why? Well, because in most cases nearly everything you read about it is piss poor or boring, to me at least. If you want me to get excited about it, then you’ve gotta hit my buttons and speak to me.

You’ve only got to look at TV and see how they approach it to see it for what it is. Humour is a good approach (Nationwides Mortgage TV ads -Brand new customers only) as are cheeky chirpy youngsters singing and dancing (Halifax Building Society) , yet the serious message is that they recognise that money and saving and banking IS boring shit (for most) yet they’ve got to turn people on somehow, so what do they do? They appeal to our emotions and build associations and feel good factors designed to make us look at them in different ways. We’ve all got to bank after all, and if we are young and looking for somewhere to bank then we might just be more inclined to bank with an organisation that resonates than with one that does not. Guess what? It’d the very same with links too! If we can get people to invest in us and in what we write then we get those links.

I’m sure you get it by now, I won’t ramp on anymore about it, other than to say that really, whoever you are, whatever you are doing, with a little creativity and some traditional marketing approaches you’ll most certainly be able to fire those synapses, get people talking about your customers and their brands. By doingit right in the online world, you’ll get a bucket load of links back in return. You won’t escape the effects of negative SEO, but it might make your job easier in the longer term.

Rob Watts
Kickstart your business today - Get an SEO Consultation or just talk to Rob about your online aspirations. With over 20 years experience in building traffic he's pretty much encountered most markets and scenarios
Posted on: 20th February 2008, by : Rob Watts

12 thoughts on “Buying links without a creditcard

  1. Hi There

    (I’m a recent feed subscriber.)

    It’s not called Stella Artois anymore …just Artois.

    Apparently “Stella” has too many nicknames along the lines of “wife beater” ! Not really the kind of image you want for your brand I guess.

    Cheers

    John

  2. Hi John

    I’ll remember that when I go to the pub next ๐Ÿ˜€

    I never really got that ‘wifebeater’ thing! Although i do understand that it makes some people aggresive, or more to the point they blame it on the beer!

    Thanks for subscribing to the feed!

  3. Hi Rob,
    I’ve read your blog for a while now and never commented (a bit shy, you know) – but had to leave one today ๐Ÿ™‚
    There’s a guy that works on the same business park as me and he said a couple of weeks back…
    “I’m not allowed to drink bitter… after two pints I want to start fighting anyone… only bitter mind – strong lager and I’m fine”
    Takes all sorts… I quite like the odd Stella too ๐Ÿ™‚
    Cheers for now,
    John

  4. Yeah those search engines are getting a little pissy about purchasing links and I guess they have a right to be, after all it is their search engine and they’re giving us traffic!

    I read about creating link bait all the time – I even try to come up with it frequently but nothing ends up working to well, probably because it’s crap! Either way I’ll keep trying as I know it’s a huge way to get a s load of links.

  5. Google have demonised the concept of buying links, just to protect their own business. The thing is, they are a search engine AND they are a PPC program (AdWords). They’ve made buying links something unethical, but their own policy is unfair agaist the other PPC programs.

  6. Bonjour – indeed, on the whole link buy front absolutely.
    They’ve no doubt convinced themselves internally that it it’s merely about protecting their algo. Everyone but them seems to see it differently.

  7. Jayson – thanks for pointing that out, its on my services page but perhaps I should make it easier to contact me too. I’ll fix the Reggie link at some point too. Cheers ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. why lie i just want a link!just joking after all your page rank is low, link buying has its positive side but once the googlebots catch u, the consequences are disastrous, nothing beats good quality content

  9. Nairobian, why do you think that the consequences are disastrous if G catch your paid links? All you have to do is to follow their guidelines.

    “Not all paid links violate our guidelines. Buying and selling links is a normal part of the economy of the web when done for advertising purposes, and not for manipulation of search results. Links purchased for advertising should be designated as such.”

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