SEO Tactic to Avoid #4: Sister Site Link Farms and Rings

Posted by Jason Ciment

Thursday, 07.02.2009 12:21pm

Today’s tip: Don’t become a victim of LINK FARMS!

Everyone knows that one of the top secrets to achieving the best SEO results: powerful, contextual, relates LINKS. Okay, maybe it’s not such a secret anymore, but the right links are definitely the best way to gain the most popularity on the web. The SEO beginner may grab for any link he can get his inexperienced hands on, but you know better than that. You know that the beginner’s lack of expertise could very well make him the ultimate candidate for any disreputable link farm. As a website constructed solely for the purpose of increasing the link popularity of other sites, a link farm is a threat to any credible website. Generally, the list of links on a link farm site are totally unrelated – posted simply for the purpose of being posted and increasing the number of incoming links to each individual site. Sure, sometimes these sites post links related to just one topic, but that doesn’t make them any more legitimate.

Chances are, you know when you’re looking at a link farm, but just in case you’re apprehensive, it’s very easy to tell. Look for mass links; we’re talking pages and pages of links. Maybe they’re related links, maybe they’re not, but either way there will be plenty. Look for very little content. These link farms are definitely not interested in sharing valuable information. Poor maintenance of a site is also usually an indication of a link farm. To a link farm webmaster, the links are all that matter, so the organization of the site is of little importance. A low page rank on top of these other signs is another good indicator. As long as the site isn’t brand new, it could already have been penalized by Google. If it hasn’t been removed completely, then it could very well have a low page rank.

Considering the extensive knowledge of the search engines, it seems crazy to think that these link farms could possibly work. And that’s right, they don’t. Most link farms are hosted on the same C-block and registered to the same company or person. Since the search engines are also registrars, they know the hosting and registration details for every site. The search engines have no trouble tracing every one of these links, which will undoubtedly be traced back to the same owner. So what will they do to you? Not only will the search engines immediately remove the link farms, but you can bet that they’ll penalize your site, too.







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