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The Dangers of Link Building: 5 Mistakes to Steer Clear Of

If you've recently checked your Google Analytics account, you've probably noticed a significant drop in your website traffic. This is actually not surprising. With the persistent roll out of new updates to algorithms in search engines, it's a blessing that all we're getting is a few drops in figures.

In a sense, SEO standards have gone up a notch! It's a tougher industry, one that is rapidly eradicating black hat covens and spam artists.

So how can we claw our way out from the maze of SEO?

The answer is, through quality link building. These three words sound simple enough, right? However, they actually pack a deeper punch for us “builders”. If we don't accomplish them correctly, we will lose more than just traffic.

So while we build or try to earn backlinks, we have to be aware of...


1. Link Exchanges

Let's rewind our clocks to five years ago. This was the era of link buying—“I pay you to link to my site, you get money, it's a win-win scenario”. Do search engines mind? Of course not! Why would they? How would they even know?

Let's jump back to the present. Link buying is no longer considered “legit”. Sure, I can still pay someone to link to my Web pages, but Google and other search engines will condemn me and place my website in the deepest darkest circles of Hell, I mean SERPs (which is basically the same thing).

2. Submissions to Directories

Before, one of the easiest ways to get traffic was through bulk submissions to online directories. It didn't matter whether the site was reliable or not or whether it was relevant to a niche or not. All that mattered were the links that would be generated through submissions.

These days, this method is not relevant anymore! Search engines look down on “unworthy” directories and listings and ALL that link to it. Especially now that Google's eyes are fixed on the importance of natural or organic links, top-notch generating methods are definitely a must!

3. Repetitive Anchor Texts

A lot of us are obsessed with keywords. It's basically the backbone of our websitewithout it, we can't hope to optimise our pages properly. However, the danger with using keywords is that we might be using them TOO MUCH.

For instance, overuse of niche-specific keywords like “cheap shoes London” or “computer technicians Bristol” will get Google's attention, and not in a good way. Additionally, if we use them repeatedly as anchor texts, well, we can expect a drop in our search results ranking soon.

4. Poor Social Signals

Search engines are relying less on inbound links to determine the “worth” of a site. Now, they also depend on social networks to help them gauge the usefulness and reputation of a site.

That means, if you're not on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, and other social platforms, you're treading dangerous link building territory.


5. Low-calibre Web Pages

A lot of website owners are under the impression that the more pages they have, the better their chances of reaching the top spot in SERPs. Is this true?

Absolutely not! It won't be logical to search engines and browsers if content and pages multiply exponentially on your site. Veer away from posting LOTS of pages for the mere sake of having them. It's better to have fewer high-quality and informative content than to have plenty of low-quality content. Otherwise, the latter pages will pull down your rankings and bear negative weight on your internal and inbound link profiles.


There's no short-cut to SEO. There will definitely be some ups and downs as you strive to conquer and dominate search engines results pages. But as long as you update your techniques and are willing to overhaul any outdated methods, you're certainly on the path towards SERP royalty!

About the Author:

Richard Eaves is a Digital Marketing Specialist at Smart Traffic, a private company based in Bristol offering services for SEO in Australia, UK, and other countries. He oversees SEO strategies for Smart Traffic’s 300+ campaigns. 



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