The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!

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The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!Warning: Many people may disagree with my thoughts in this post about back-linking but here goes…

Not that long ago, Meta tags were an important part of optimizing your website / blog.

Website owners stuffed their Meta tags with the same targeted keywords, like ‘cat food, lovely cat food, best cat food’…and numerous other slogans mentioning the same keyword phrase.

Along with other search engine optimization criteria, stuffing your Meta tags with keywords ensured you ranked pretty well.

Google changed their algorithm, and Meta tags are no longer used as part of their search engine optimization.

It’s the same story with reciprocal linking. I link my site to your site and you link your site to mine. We both get a great backlink! Everyone did it – well a lot of website owners did!

Google now puts very little emphasis on reciprocal linking.

“GIVE US THE BACKLINKS”

Then over the last 2 to 3 years it’s all been about building backlinks using anchor text. Build as many links as you can, vary the anchor text and you’ll get ranked.

Now that method of optimization is being abused.

Website and blogs owners are using ‘spammy’ SEO services that promise to build you thousands of backlinks for cents. And they do. Problem is the backlinks often come from ‘spammy’ or undesirable sites.

Hence the recent Panda and Penguin Google algorithm changes.

These algorithm changes were aimed at removing spammy backlinks and over optimized sites were impacted.

The Complaints Are Pouring In…

Many websites owners are complaining.

Many blog owners are complaining.

Their site rankings are falling.

They feel they are being penalized for building too many backlinks.

They’re not.

They are being penalized for building too many ‘spammy’ backlinks.

But this is just the beginning…

I believe over the next few months we will see more Google algorithm changes…all to do with targeting spammy backlinks.

And in 2013 backlinks will be way down in the algorithm that determines your website position in the search engines.

I think there will be more emphasis on quality content.

Oh no, here we go again…it’s all about the content.

But it’s true!

Your visitors come to the internet to find a solution to their problem.

“I have this problem and I need it fixed”.

They don’t want just theory.

They want actions they can use.

They want to be told what to do.

Let me say this again: They don’t want just theory.

Now be honest…how many of your blog posts are just theory?

High level fluff!

Dare, I say…I think it’s the majority!

So how will Google determine quality content?

Like they do now.

How long do people stay on your site?

How many pages do they view?

The bounce rate.

How many people link to your content from their site?

How many people have shared the content on the major social sites like Twitter, Facebook and Google+?

These aspects will be given more emphasis.

This is going to be my back linking strategy from now on…

Don’t even think about backlinks.

“Whoa” I hear you say!

Think of it this way…if you are doing certain things / tasks JUST to build a backlink…STOP NOW!

Do you comment…just to build a backlink?

If yes…then STOP! You should comment because you want to comment and add to the conversation.

Do you guest post…just to get a backlink?

If yes…then STOP! You should guest post because you want to widen your brand and profile.

Do you set up social site profiles just to get a backlink?

If yes…then STOP! You should set up social site profiles because you want to share other people’s work.

That’s the theory out the way!

Actions For You…

Forget about backlinks but do this…

1.     Social Profiles

Set up accounts at the following:

Facebook

Twitter

Google+

YouTube

LinkedIn

Each of the above allows you to add links to your site.

But remember we are not setting these up just for the backlinks…we want to share other people’s work on these sites.

2.     Commenting

Comment on blog posts but ensure you add to the conversation. Remember others will read your comment and get an opinion of you. You are not writing just to get a backlink. If you do, think of it as a bonus.

After your comment is approved, add the blog post to your social sites like Google+, Twitter, etc.

3.     Guest Posting

Above I mention that quality content is important. It is even more important when you guest post.

Every day I receive about 5 – 10 requests for guest posts to be published on my blog. The vast majority are absolutely rubbish. Not related to my niche, poor grammar, high level fluff or they want backlinks to their sales pages!

They go straight into the email trash!

Go ahead and guest post but ensure you provide awesome quality content and only link back to your website/blog or “about me” page.

4.     Your Own Content

Make it the best possible. Make it so good, people want to share and link to it.

From now on, don’t perform tasks that just build backlinks.

Simply concentrate on sharing your wonderful knowledge and experience to help people solve their problems.

Disclaimer: Of course, I have no inside knowledge (nor does anyone else – well unless you are Mr Google) of what Google are going to do next. This is just my gut feel.

Now…over to you…what do you think?

Am I talking rubbish?

Am I talking perfect sense?

Please share your thoughts in the comments below (and not just because you want a backlink!!!)

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266 Responses to The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!

  1. Anja Merret July 25, 2012 at 9:33 am #

    Really great post. And I’m sure you will get some nay-sayers too!

  2. Corinne Edwards
    Twitter:
    July 25, 2012 at 11:17 am #

    Dear Andrew -

    Funny you should write this one.

    Lately, every backlink I have received has resulted in no such site when i search the source.

    I just spam them all. Glad to hear confirmation.
    Corinne Edwards recently posted..SO NOW YOU HAVE A DATE – And then what? – follow up by Sherri JoubessMy Profile

  3. Beat Schindler
    Twitter:
    July 25, 2012 at 11:27 am #

    This is great news for people like me. Wish I had had the foresight a couple of years ago. Instead I let myself get directed the wrong way – for a while. It’s never too late to do right thing … unless you wait to tomorrow, isn’t it :-] ~Beat
    Beat Schindler recently posted..The Paradox Of ComplimentsMy Profile

  4. Michał July 25, 2012 at 11:36 am #

    Hmmm… interesting. Yes, I do all that stuff (comments, articles, social profiles etc) to have backlinks (not always of course, but still). And I think the backlinks will still be very important – but just we have to think of a less-spammy methods to build backlinks. That’s all :)

  5. Kathy
    Twitter:
    July 25, 2012 at 1:42 pm #

    Okay, I’m putting this news in the ‘sigh of relief’ column. I’d much rather focus on providing quality content than working the system. Yay Google!
    Kathy recently posted..3 Resume Trends Stinking Up Your Job SearchMy Profile

  6. Debbie
    Twitter:
    July 25, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

    I’m all for it. To me this internet is to get good information. Sometimes i am looking for good info about something, pull up a site on the first page and say to myself, “What are they doing here, they are no help.”
    Thanks again Andrew for keeping us going in the right direction.
    Debbie
    Debbie recently posted..How You Can Stop Your Break Up, Divorce or Being Rejected in Your RelationshipMy Profile

  7. Matt July 25, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

    Very interesting. I would have to say that on the whole I agree with your predictions. When it comes to blog commenting, I originally started out looking for links but that has changed. In the process, I discovered many interesting sites and now consume large numbers of articles on a daily basis. Generally, I have a lot to say anyway so blog commenting comes naturally. Even if I no longer owned any sites/blogs, the chatter would still continue.
    Matt recently posted..Early Or Late – How Can I Tell?My Profile

  8. Evan July 25, 2012 at 4:07 pm #

    I hope you are right about google’s intentions.

    Now here’s a proposition not everyone will agree with: quality is not the same as popularity.

    I hope google figures out a way to differentiate or it will be unlikely that someone new with high quality stuff will be able to get rated

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 26, 2012 at 12:31 am #

      Evan,

      How do you define ‘popularity’ on line?

      Social sharing, number of comments?

      I suspect Google uses nunmerous factors to determine quality including the ones I mention which I don;t think are just popularity.

      Perhaps they monitor ‘returning visitors’ as well?

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

      • Matt July 31, 2012 at 8:18 am #

        I’m glad you mentioned returning visitors, Andrew. I am convinced that the return rate is becoming quite important, more so than the bounce rate, which is relative.

        One of my blogs has a particularly good (in my judgement) return rate and I believe this plays a significant role in why it performs well in search.
        Matt recently posted..Early Or Late – How Can I Tell?My Profile

  9. Raheel July 25, 2012 at 4:16 pm #

    The post is mind-blowing, Andrew. But I have a question. A very serious one!
    Isn’t LinkedIn a professional platform? How do they use it for bringing traffic to a website? I’ve been registered with it and have been using it for a couple of years. Now, I feel like I’ve used the service overly neatly. Huh?
    Thanks in advance if you be kind enough to help me understand!

  10. Jane
    Twitter:
    July 25, 2012 at 6:59 pm #

    Commenting and guest posting for backlinks as opposed to offer quality discussion or content – this one has a fine line. Sometimes the comments or the guest posts appear so genuine until you see the “point” in it. But genuine guest bloggers deserve their link – not just as a backlink but as a recognition so that people can check out their site after they have read that amazing guest post.

    Thanks for sharing this Andrew.

    Byt the way, you’d want to work on positioning your sharebar (or DiggDigg). It runs into the content in my browser.
    Jane recently posted..Write Killer Content: How To Identify What Your Readers WantMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 26, 2012 at 12:36 am #

      Jane,

      I trash more comments and prospective guest posts than accept. Most are NOT genuine.

      Thanks for letting me know about the share bar – I need to investigate that as it looks lovely for me! I have deactivated for now.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

      • Gail Gardner
        Twitter:
        November 6, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

        Bloggers need to start thinking of their blogs as a business and if you had a business you would not keep the door locked or throw out your customers. That is what most bloggers do with commenters.

        There is absolutely no way to know whether a sincere original comment from someone who also has a business or blog is because they wanted links or they got the link because they read your blog. Most bloggers treat their commenters badly because they are so afraid of spam – but they don’t even have a clear idea what spam is.

        We need to stop being so concerned over spam that we run off our readers. I encourage bloggers to read a post I wrote about that. I’ll link it from the name field of this comment so they can get to it.
        Gail Gardner recently posted..Facebook Users Outraged Over New Extortion ModelMy Profile

  11. Shilpan July 25, 2012 at 9:16 pm #

    Wonderful post, Andrew. I believe that quality content is the key to your success with blogging. Google can change algorithm for other things, but if you write quality content, you won’t have to worry about future algorithm changes.
    Shilpan recently posted..10 Reasons Why it’s Easier to Build Wealth NowMy Profile

  12. Anton Koekemoer
    Twitter:
    July 26, 2012 at 2:03 am #

    Hi Again Andrew,

    Yes – I do agree. Don’t go out looking for backlinks. Rather build your links and monitor them – when they turn into a backlink then utilize the link to the fullest. This whole process should be done as naturally as possible – and no short cuts should be taken, as this is most likely not white-hat shortcuts, but the ones leading you down the path with all the people wearing their black hats. Don’t think short term – rather think long term when it comes to trying to evade algorithms and finding shortcuts.
    Anton Koekemoer recently posted..Are you a local business? Try blogging to get targeted visitorsMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 27, 2012 at 3:36 am #

      Anton,

      Eactly…long-term is what we should be thinking. It falls into the same sort of area I have been writing about recently – people buying sammy products and services to try and get a fast buck.

      Being successful on-line is a long term thing.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

  13. Wade Balsdon
    Twitter:
    July 26, 2012 at 7:14 am #

    Great post Andrew. In two words it is all about quality and relationship building. Both of these skills take time and patience to build.
    Wade Balsdon recently posted..Lose weight with high water content foodsMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 27, 2012 at 3:42 am #

      Wade,

      They do! All those blog owners who have been looking for a fast buck are going to have a rough ride going forward.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

      • Sudeep Rana August 3, 2012 at 8:27 pm #

        I think you have made your point pretty well. In my point of view genuine bloggers are very few they write beautifully but their content doesn’t get enough ranking they deserve. I welcome new algo changes to filter out spammy sites who abuse the system.
        This will attract more serious bloggers because you dont have to concentrate on dirty tricks to get backlinks for ranking.

        Earlier search engines were not that smart but now they are getting way too smarter and days are not far when almost no backlinks will be required to rank content. Only quality content will rule search engines. And this is the real objective of a search engine too.

  14. Jim July 26, 2012 at 3:26 pm #

    I have to agree. Moreso because I really hate spammy tactics!

    I never built an “unnatural” link until two months ago (post panda, penguin) when I hired the best quality link builder I could find. I did it as a test, and found that his efforts increased my rankings for those keywords. I’d like to think that it wouldn’t work!! Having said that, the ROI doesn’t look good enough to continue with it.

    And there’s also the possibility that google will change something again and those gains will disappear.

    I’d prefer to stick to the “natural” flow of what I’m doing, and stick to helping my tribe solve their problems.

    Great work btw, Andrew!

  15. Teddi Knight July 26, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

    I can see what your saying, but overall from what I have read as a “newbie” to all this backlinking strategy is that quality backlinks are still going to be needed. You can have great content but without backlinks no one is going to find you. Qualilty backlinks needs a lot of work and takes a lot of time. I see on your site you discussed backlink demon but I noted that a lot of what Backlink Demon does is not “proper” for Google seo methods now, such as spinning comments and posting them just because the sites are dofollow, things like that.
    Overall it seems that this backlinking is tough and yet the sites I see that rank well still have tons of links that are of questionable nature including lots of directories. It makes one wonder if Google is being upfront with their backlink advice or just want to have people think they are not ranking sites with these types of links, very highly. It is very confusing to those of us who want to share their information and knowledge with others.
    I would be interested in comments about software like Backlink Demon after reading this article. I wondered if you no longer thought backlink Demon was worth the time and effort. Thanks.

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 27, 2012 at 3:50 am #

      Teddi,

      When you talk about ‘backlink demon’, I assume you are referring to Social Bookmarking Demon…which is a tool I do talk about on this site.

      Social Bookmarking Demon has nothing to do with spinning comments. It’s a tool that can spped up the social bookmarking task.

      And if you have great content…people will find you…if they don’t…it’s NOT great content even if you THINK it is.

      And one more thing…the recent Google changes are just the start…lots more to come.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

      • Teddi Knight July 27, 2012 at 10:21 pm #

        Thanks Andrew for your reply. So then you think Bookmarking Demon is still a great product to use? When I look at it it seems like a lot of what Bookmarking Demon is targeting is not quality information but basically a lot of what Google is trying to eliminate. What are your thoughts? Thanks

  16. Pattu July 26, 2012 at 8:34 pm #

    I am not familiar with back links or whatever. I liked your idea about writing good content. Thanks for enlightening me.

  17. Kelvin Wealth
    Twitter:
    July 27, 2012 at 5:30 am #

    Great post Andrew…
    I felt like I was been flogged for just building backlinks…

    I was also thinking about this some few weeks back about those that go everywhere building spammy backlinks and thinking Google is a fool! They get Google angry all the time that is why Google will never stop changing their algorithm…

    I love the idea you passed on through this post and I strongly believe also that very soon backlink will not matter like b4…

    Nice post Andrew…

  18. Steve Faber
    Twitter:
    July 27, 2012 at 7:05 am #

    Andrew,

    You’re right on the money. You should build your web presence as if Google doesn’t exist at all. I read a post about 6 or 7 years ago somewhere that was entitled backlinking for traffic, not page rank.

    Traffic is the reason to build backllinks now, not in an effort to stay ahead of Google’s ever shifting algorithm. Build relationships, not backlinks. As we’ve seen from the social media explosion over the last 5 years, content sharing is where the real traffic lies.

    While search engione traffic has the advantage of bringing in people actually looking for what you do, you’re always at the search engines mercy to not only rank you, but rank you for the most advantageous terms. This i not a great way to build a business foundation. If anything, search ngine traffic should only be the catalyst for building real, lon term traffic through other means.

    Socially derived traffic traffic has no such problems. If people are sharing your content and engaging you, it is because they have found so much value there they want to show others. Links to your content will spread simply because high value is attractive.

    If you reach that place, traffic wil take care of itself. To make that kind of content, you’re spot on. No fluff, but actionable information that will enable specific problem soliving. The other kind of content that spreads well socially is stuff that is highly entertaining.

    If your content provides high value, either through entertainment, specific actionable problm solving, or both, you’d better start looking at server upgrades.
    Steve Faber recently posted..What is Inbound Marketing and How Exactly Do I Make It Work Wonders?My Profile

  19. Wade Balsdon
    Twitter:
    July 27, 2012 at 8:41 am #

    @ Kelvin, I don’t think Andrew is saying that backlinking will die. He is saying that there must be quality backlinking, just like quality posting and guest blogging.
    Wade Balsdon recently posted..5 Reasons Why Herbalife Doesn’t WorkMy Profile

  20. Derek
    Twitter:
    July 27, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    Hey Andrew,

    I have to disagree. I think backlinks will always be important to the algorithm because that’s how information is shared online. How do you find stuff online? Through backlinks. It’s how the whole internet is connected.

    Also, I feel all of the following things you mentioned about determining great content are flawed…

    How long do people stay on your site? (if you have great content and give people exactly what they are looking for when they land on your site, they have no reason to stay on your site for a long time. Doesn’t mean your site is crap. Flawed statistic.)

    How many pages do they view? (again, a flawed statistic for the same reason as above. Give them what they want right away (like a good site should) and they don’t need to visit a bunch of pages on your website)

    The bounce rate (yep, flawed too. Crappy site could have a high bounce rate, but so could a really great site that is very targeted and gives people the info they want right when they get to the site. They get what they want and they leave without visiting other pages (counting as a bounce). But they didn’t leave because the site sucked. They left because they got the info they needed immediately. This is the reason even Matt Cutts has said Google doesn’t use bounce rate in the algorithm.)

    How many people link to your content from their site? (will continue to be important)

    How many people have shared the content on the major social sites like Twitter, Facebook and Google+? (will continue to be important).

    I do think high quality content will be important. In fact, it should be the most important thing in my opinion but I think Google will figure out a better way to determine quality. I just don’t see the statistics you’ve mentioned being vitally important because they are all flawed in that they aren’t really very good indicators of “quality”…and I’m sure Google knows this.

    They might make sense for the casual surfer who is just bouncing around and surfing through websites because they have nothing else to do. In that case, if your site is interesting they might visit more pages, stay on the site longer, etc. but that doesn’t make sense for someone doing a search in a search engine.

    When someone is searching for something from a search engine they are usually trying to get information on a specific thing, trying to answer a question, solve a problem, etc.

    So that person wants to find the information immediately, answer their question or solve their problem, and then move on with their life. In that case, your site should give them exactly what they are looking for the minute they land on it. They shouldn’t have to browse through multiple pages looking for the information (which means they won’t spend a ton of time on your site, you’ll probably have a high bounce rate, and you won’t have a very high page views per visitor.)

    But again, not because your website is low quality, but rather because you gave a searcher exactly what they wanted the moment they hit your site.

    Ok, I wrote a book, but this is one of those things where I just don’t think those parameters are good measures of quality at all, and I think Google is smart enough to know this.
    Derek recently posted..Text Your Ex Back Review Of Michael Fiore’s TXB 2.0 Texting GuideMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 30, 2012 at 1:22 am #

      Hi Derek,

      Thanks for a great comment.

      You say:

      “I have to disagree. I think backlinks will always be important to the algorithm because that’s how information is shared online. How do you find stuff online? Through backlinks. It’s how the whole internet is connected.”

      Perhaps I ddn’t say it very well…what I am saying is backlinks will be important but only certain ones…hence only recommending the 4 actions above.

      You say many of my ‘stats’ thoughts are flawed. Taking each one in isolation like you have…I can understand your logic. But my thinking is Google don’t take thee stats in isolation. They are ‘linked’ otgether somehow to give a view on the site content.

      I am interested in how you think Google will measure the quality of the content.

      Thanks.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

  21. Kenneth C Young July 27, 2012 at 3:33 pm #

    Well you mention when setting up profiles in places like Twitter,Facebook,Youtube,Google Plus ETC we should be sharing someone’s content other then mine and my question how the hell does that benefit me?.

    Kenneth

    • Wade Balsdon
      Twitter:
      July 28, 2012 at 12:07 am #

      @ Kenneth, I too shared your sentiments. What is in it for me to share other people’s posts. Since changing this mindset, I have noticed an increase in my posts being shared.

      Derek makes some valid points especially about sharing information on social media sites. You know that old say “if you want to change the world,start with yourself” Well here is a challenge for you Kenneth, try to share one good post a day for the next 3 months and see what happens. :-)
      Wade Balsdon recently posted..5 Reasons Why Herbalife Doesn’t WorkMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 30, 2012 at 1:23 am #

      Kenneth

      Reciprocation. One of the best ways to build relationships.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

  22. Atul Dogra July 27, 2012 at 5:18 pm #

    If someone is writing unique and useful content then little social promotion is enough to get noticed. Bloggers must subscribe to all good blogs related to their niche, so they can always stay updated and comment on them.

  23. topijerami July 27, 2012 at 5:32 pm #

    i dont agree with you
    because i think backlink can give your kweyword rank good
    and backlink i still te best way to make your keyword rank good ini SE

  24. Mariella Lombardi July 28, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

    Hi Andrew,

    I do agree with what you are saying and you definitely have a point. But I don’t think that’s going to stop spammers from doing what they do. It’s like you get used to a certain SEO strategy and no one can tell you that maybe it’s not that good. Just an opinion…

    Mariella
    Mariella Lombardi recently posted..My Elderly Mother is Obese but Healthy Otherwise – How Do I Help Her Lose Weight?My Profile

  25. Gustav July 29, 2012 at 8:32 am #

    I don’t know about you and the rest of your followers, but I am so bloody fed up with jumping through every hoop that Google decides to use to show us all how “powerful” they are. I agree with you on the next “hoop” they will employ…what else is left? I did the reciprocal link thing as well, and it doesn’t really matter what we do, spammers and those with deep pockets, will find a way to game the system, and will succeed until the next “hoop”. I for one do not patronize the social sites, nor will I after reading some of the utter garbage some people talk about. If my site isn’t good enough to stand on its own, then so be it! My primary wish in life is that some other search engine will come on the scene and knock the god, Google flat on their egomanical butt. Perhaps the new Yahoo CEO who came from Google knows a few of their tricks and can put a big dent in their revenue???

  26. Tyler July 30, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

    I am new to the whole SEO world and I have been doing a bunch of research on the best ways to promote your site, increase your rankings, etc. The vast majority of articles and blogs I read have been telling me to only worry about providing readers with quality content. But for a niche like mine, it seems like a large amount of content is hard to come by. Therefore it makes me think that creating backlinks is a solid method. What do you think about that? Maybe I just haven’t thought about enough ideas for content?

    I like the idea you proposed here of looking at backlinks as a bonus to your SEO strategies. I am definitely going to keep that in mind as I continue to work on my website. Thank you for the helpful information!

  27. Gagan Arora July 31, 2012 at 3:33 am #

    nice write after coming panda the definition of back link is totally changed now people really understand what is back links… the above ideas are automatic increase quality links..no need to ask anybody give me link…awesome share..keep update….

  28. Travis Brown August 1, 2012 at 9:57 am #

    Andrew,

    I like what you are saying here about not performing tasks just to get the backlinks. This is essentially what Google has been telling us all along – create the content, promote it, and they will come. It takes lots of manpower, but that is why specific people DESERVE to rank the way that they do.

    What will be most interesting to me is how Google measures quality content. The ways that they already do is mildly complex, but I think that with the sharp minds that they have over there we will be seeing algorithm changes that will be extremely hard to game. Introducing social already throws a wrench into things for some people. Thanks for the post. Always good to be reminded that the customer (reader, content consumer, what-have-you’s, etc.) should be coming first. The better it is for them the better it will be for us (in search engines, profit, and more).

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      August 1, 2012 at 11:27 am #

      Travis,

      If only we knew how Google will measure content. We can only guess or have a decent idea.

      not sure if you saw Derek’s comment above – he didn’t agree with my thinking and I’m waiting for him to return to give his views!

      Really appreciate you coming across to comment.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..The End Of The Backlink – Long Live Backlinks!My Profile

  29. John Lange August 1, 2012 at 3:40 pm #

    Funny how the panda really has changed the game. A lot of people must definitely have realized confer the consequences experienced lately :D

  30. Gary August 2, 2012 at 9:16 pm #

    I do not think it will ever die completely. I just think guest posting is going to take a much bigger role. The in content links are going to start holding more weight than it did before. Without backlinks it gets kind of hard to tell which sites should rank. If it was based off of just traffic and analytics stats then how would smaller websites ever come up in the rankings?

  31. Faissal Alhaithami August 5, 2012 at 6:48 am #

    What I really like about SEO is its ever-changing dynamics. You can not just stick to one strategy and expect to dominate the search forever. Ranking factors for search engines like Google are continuously changing. If you’re ready to embrace these changes, you might just lose the race.
    Faissal Alhaithami recently posted..How to Increase Your Social Media Fan Engagement With Web FormsMy Profile

  32. Dhruv Bhagat August 5, 2012 at 7:35 am #

    All you said is just AMAZING !!! When I started blogging, I used to spend time just on writing posts which consists of 80 to 90 words, a picture and ending it with a link like “Click here to know more”. Also, my site was getting optimized. I was getting huge web traffic. But all my stupid work comes to an end after Panda and Penguin.
    I was very frustrated at that time. Even now, I am still fighting for my blog against Panda and Penguin. I have now deleted bad quality posts, remove broken links, un-linked with spammy sites.
    Still I am recovering !!!!
    Your post has made me learn something new now.. I will work for readership and improve followers !!!
    Thanks for the valuable post :)

  33. raviva August 6, 2012 at 12:47 am #

    i find backlinks being very useful
    but the best is having it from your niche market. that makes it much more effective

  34. Jack Trades August 7, 2012 at 2:56 am #

    That’s right, as long as your efforts are targeted on getting backlinks you won’t even get these backlinks, because people will just sense that you don’t have anything valuable enough to be communicated. And you don’t want that.

  35. Shiwangi peswani August 7, 2012 at 6:16 am #

    Excellent tips you have complied Andrew but the part where you said that forget backlink but remember social networking, I disagree..I have a good social network and also i get the visits from there but then again what only matters is organic search…isn’t it…Refereal visits never bring ads revenue

  36. Annetta Powell August 9, 2012 at 1:14 pm #

    Hi Andrew,

    Indeed great tips! To be honest, I haven’t done anything to get backlinks in the past. But someone told me couple of months back that I am missing back links and I hired someone to do it. And all I got was back links from some junk sites. Now I am in the process of removing most of it.

    I believe in what you say about the content. The SEO tricks are not going to work for long. The best thing is to stick with the content. Adding more informative content.

    And I totally agree with the social media as well. More about the social engagement. I have been doing pretty good with FB and bit late with Google+. But I am building my “Backlinks” in G+ too.

  37. Rótulos Valencia August 12, 2012 at 8:24 am #

    If that is true, this is good news for us. We have very little reputation but great contents! We are glad contents get an even more importante role compared to back linking.

  38. jessie August 13, 2012 at 9:37 am #

    no one can fool uncle Google fora long time that’s why Google keeps changing its algorithm frequently. Thanks for this informative article, you pointed out mistakes most of the bloggers do unknowingly. aware us in future too about new things too.
    :)

    Jess
    jessie recently posted..Alia Bhatt – Teenage Debutant Actress Of Student Of The YearMy Profile

  39. Ana Hoffman
    Twitter:
    August 13, 2012 at 9:58 am #

    In theory, I absolutely agree, Andrew.

    HOWEVER, sometimes I feel like it’s not Google who tells us how to do/not to do SEO; it’s the spammers.

    They always figure out the way “around the system”, leaving Google to react and as to scramble to keep up with the changes.
    Ana Hoffman recently posted..Why Traffic Generation Cafe Runs on ThesisMy Profile

  40. Leo Dimilo August 14, 2012 at 11:40 am #

    Personally, I don’t think that it is the backlink that is in danger but the value of the link itself. As Google pushes more into the social graph range, the backlink along with authorship details will matter more so in the long run and the automated links that so many link builders have gravitated toward will present less value.

    So, the back link as a source of SEO will change. What won’t change is the traffic equity that comes from building links ; once again, assuming that the links built are built around an existing community.

  41. Tipnest August 21, 2012 at 2:28 pm #

    lets say… if you dont suggest a backlink as an seo thing… then adding a backlink of all those who comments here? :P

  42. Steve August 21, 2012 at 11:25 pm #

    I never comment just to get backlink its not good to post a comment just for getting a backlink ! you’re right Comment must go on for conversation ! Google+, Twitter & facebook these are social networking site these social netowrk also help to give backlink

  43. akhilendra August 22, 2012 at 12:19 am #

    I am sure that’s the way forward. Just look at the number of site selling back links now if someone can create quality but doesn’t have money to buy link then someone who can buy links will rank higher irrespective of the content. whereas the visitor is not looking for back links of a site, the real purpose is content so it should be the highest priority in search engine’s algorithm.

  44. Md Firdosh
    Twitter:
    August 24, 2012 at 12:03 pm #

    It is right that many bloggers are complaining about the decrease in traffic after panda update and google is being rude to the spamy backlinks. And I am also agree with the author that we should not only comment to build backlink.
    Md Firdosh recently posted..Career in Indian Railways & Government Jobs in Indian RailwayMy Profile

  45. Gautham August 29, 2012 at 4:15 am #

    Buying Links and obvious spamming links (Like Xrumer blasts to homepage) would surely affect them, it is not unprecedented, but yes, Panda and Penguin hit few blogs unexpectedly
    Gautham recently posted..Hostgator 40% Off on Hosting CouponMy Profile

  46. Pressa August 29, 2012 at 4:34 am #

    Interesting insight you got here but I do not agree with :
    “Do you comment…just to build a backlink?
    If yes…then STOP! You should comment because you want to comment and add to the conversation.”
    Comment: How can searchengines even know a comment is not related to the article? There is no way your comment will be penalized because of that.

    “Do you guest post…just to get a backlink?
    If yes…then STOP! You should guest post because you want to widen your brand and profile.”
    Comment: If the site owner accepts your guestpost, how can it harm you by building backlink like this? You will still get a link from the site.

  47. Sam R September 1, 2012 at 4:49 am #

    Good Info Andrew, What do you think when Google is going to penalize the term “SEO”, i think Google did not like SEO from a long time!

  48. ravi patel September 8, 2012 at 5:19 am #

    i really like this post and the way you said about the backlinks. Google algorithm has changed the definition of backlinks and we should understand this. If we work on the old leaks of building more and more backlinks will really cause a big trouble in the last.
    From today i will concentrate only on the Quality contents and not on building backlinks.

  49. Phyllis Blakeman September 8, 2012 at 1:29 pm #

    This is great, personally I feel that overall I have to agree with your predicaments. Originally blog commenting was all about looking for links for me, but now this has all changed, I have found many sites and read a range of different articles. I think it is a shame that the creation of these backlinks bring about more spam, as it can get very annoying! Thank you for sharing this.

  50. Sandra September 9, 2012 at 11:04 pm #

    Buying Backlinks is not the future, only a good content with helpful text will give the power to build backlinks on them alone – and will rank higher after the sea-animal updates.

  51. BD Williams September 10, 2012 at 8:01 pm #

    Does having a youtube account really draw traffic for you site?

  52. Felicia September 10, 2012 at 11:21 pm #

    Hi Andrew,
    If Google is able to make quality of content as the basis for ranking, then that is great news. When we search for something, it is because we want to know about something, and good or great information is very important in this aspect. Website owners should then try to compete with more content quality to get ranked instead of concentrating on adding more and more backlinks towards their sites.
    Felicia recently posted..RummyRoyal: Exclusive weekly freeroll offer!My Profile

  53. aufa
    Twitter:
    September 11, 2012 at 9:06 pm #

    thanks for a good advise. I like to make blog commenting to add my blogging knownledge and how to improve it. Backlink is very important but not only made from blog commenting..
    aufa recently posted..Free Download Google Maps for AndroidMy Profile

  54. Karite September 12, 2012 at 8:21 pm #

    I think backlinks are still very important in making a site more visible and gain popularity on the web. In blog commenting, you should comment base on the topic being discussed and not just leave a comment that has no relation to the topic.

  55. Raviraj September 14, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    Actually I am new to blogging and I was told by many bloggers that backlinking is a must to stay alive blogging!.. So I had just started backlinking. So now after reading this article I am in dielima what exactly google does?.. And what should I follow in future!

  56. James September 18, 2012 at 6:17 am #

    For blogs it is clear what to do, just add unique content and promote it via social media sites, but what should do the owners of company websites?

    What can we do? We cannot write blog posts about services that we don’t provide, and if we are writing only about our company after 10 articles there won’t be anything to write…

  57. Ernest September 24, 2012 at 6:49 pm #

    This is a very useful information. I really appreciate your good hand work here. A very good tutorial.

    I have visited many SEO sites and read their articles but it is not well explained as you did here.

  58. Sherri
    Twitter:
    September 26, 2012 at 1:15 pm #

    Andrew,

    I think you’re talking good sense. Getting spam backlinks is easy, just allow the spam comments to be published on your blog. They’re trash, but they’re backlinks. I don’t allow them. I go through all comments and mark spam and delete them when I empty the spam folder.

    I do have a question, What about services like HostGator’s Attracta service? Do backlinks through it help?
    Sherri recently posted..Coming out is being known — Cathy’s storyMy Profile

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      September 27, 2012 at 12:37 am #

      Sherri

      Your approach to spammy comments is the same as mine but sometimes, in my case, a few ones get through my “manual trap”!

      Re: Attracta

      From what I have seen on their website it helps search engines crawl all your pages.

      I don’t see anything about backlinks.

      And if you are:

      . using WordPress
      . your site is at least a few months old
      . you are adding content regularly
      .have a sitemap plugin installed
      .verified your site with Google, Bing etc

      I really cannot see why the search engines have not already crawled all your pages without Attracta.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..If You Could Only Have One ‘Blogging’ Question Answered What Would It Be?My Profile

  59. Paul Butler September 28, 2012 at 1:20 pm #

    Andrew,

    great advice. Backlinking has been a strategy to get traffic to my blog in the past. I still get backlinks to my sites but am getting more into the social media than backlinking. Got some golden nuggets from you. thanks…
    Paul Butler

  60. Beryl September 29, 2012 at 12:54 pm #

    Grateful for the advice. The benefit I find to doing it the ‘proper’ way is that you find so much fabulous, inspiring content on other people’s blogs. Info you would never come across if you just spammed. The comments lead to some very interesting connections too.

  61. Ajay
    Twitter:
    October 2, 2012 at 1:45 am #

    A lots of appreciation for your post. Backlinking to a sit lets to rank well in google and drives huge traffic. And backlinks from guest posts increases our fame and even drives traffic to our site.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Ajay recently posted..Upgrade Samsung Galaxy Ace With CyanogenMod 7.2 S3 FirmwareMy Profile

  62. Jay Aar October 2, 2012 at 5:36 am #

    Your article is great. I agree with you.
    But, I think if you have great content and then you just start blog commenting , you will get your position.
    Content is always king.

  63. S.Garland October 3, 2012 at 9:46 am #

    I think that you are on the right track. But, I do not think that the days of backlinks are gone yet. They will always probably be one of the factors, just not the main one anymore. The shift will be toward social media backlinks.

  64. Evan October 5, 2012 at 3:42 am #

    Great content = good writing pertaining to a worthwhile topic.

    The writing doesn’t need to be literary but it should usually be clear and plain. Blogging is closer to journalism than academia.
    A good motto: eschew prolixity.
    Closely followed by: the currency of superlatives is devalued through overuse (esp. pertains to the US)
    Also: stick close to experience and/or the topic.

    The worthwhileness of the topic will depend. It can deal with a difficulty that people have. It could be a little known fact or useful procedure. Something that assists people to move toward a valued goal.

    I don’t think it is hard to define good content. And I think most of us most of the time could agree on what it is when shown examples and will easily rank better and worse.
    Evan recently posted..Lying to Yourself Work Doesn’t WorkMy Profile

  65. Writer October 8, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

    Great content!
    You are right Andrew. One should not comment or write a guest post just to gain a back link. It is to be done to build up our brand name. Even though the importance of back links is too much. But, one should not spam for back links.

  66. Rai October 9, 2012 at 2:38 pm #

    Hey this is very motivational for me, because I prefer quality than quantity this makes me think that I´m on the right track. thank you very much for this article

  67. Gabriel
    Twitter:
    October 12, 2012 at 10:02 pm #

    I really didn’t hear that much arguing with you on this topic…

    Anyhow, Google mentioned that the +1 will have no affect on their search algorithm. In addition, links from social media sites still don’t seem to be making that much of a difference to rankings, even post recent Google updates. I think this is a pretty bold statement to make, and I commend you for it, but I think linking is still going to be part of the game…not spam linking… but atleast something close to organic link building.
    Gabriel recently posted..V2 E Cigs and Vapor Couture for Breast Cancer Awareness MonthMy Profile

  68. erda October 13, 2012 at 4:20 am #

    Really great post.
    Funny you should write this one.This is great news for people like me.I think that you are on the right track. But, I do not think that the days of backlinks are gone yet.
    erda recently posted..Kelly Clarkson: Boyfriend Brandon Blackstock Is The Man I Will MarryMy Profile

  69. Ameenah October 14, 2012 at 7:42 am #

    You’re making perfect sense! I know that in the end, your content procures readers. Mindless clicks from a dozen “users” through your website are literally nothing compared to a single person who likes your content and takes the time to read it. But when you start out, and you have close to NO people aware of your blog, it’s hard to stay steadfast and positive with this mindset.

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      October 16, 2012 at 6:56 am #

      Ameenah

      I agree…when you first start out…it just feels like hard work and nothing in return. Hence why so many bloggers give up. You have to get past the first 6 months.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..11 Hot Tips To Jump Start Traffic To A Stagnant BlogMy Profile

      • Brandy May 28, 2013 at 12:12 pm #

        I am 6 months in and I had better search rankings 3 months ago. I’m not sure why, I have been posting quality content like mad. I’m chalking it up to the backlinks, because I haven’t had as much time to post. I have a great readership and significant search traffic, I’m just not ranking as high as I want to be on some of my major posts.

        However, my site is ranking as very slow on Alexa right now. Definitely could be an issue.

        • Andrew from Building Backlinks
          Twitter:
          May 29, 2013 at 12:41 am #

          Brandy

          You could be targeting the wrong keywords or not have the keywords you are targeting in your site build or blog posts.

          I could not see any obvious keywords in your site’s title or description. Plus your blog posts don’t have any meta descriptions.

          Both of those points would have a major impact on your rankings.

          Andrew
          Andrew recently posted..No Backlinks? Keep Calm And…My Profile

          • Brandy May 29, 2013 at 4:30 am #

            Thank you so very much for responding! I determined that my Yoast settings got lost (also solving the issue of bad meta descriptions in my search results that I was also having. Google was generating descriptions that weren’t even from the post). I added the tag to place my auto excerpts (yes, I’m lazy) back in and resubmitted to Google.

            I’m going to pay more attention to my keywords and crafting better descriptions for my site going forward and spend a little time each day going backwards to update everything.

  70. vasu devan October 17, 2012 at 9:31 pm #

    Thank you for sharing this nice post.I am a new blogger. This blog is really helpful for me and also other new bloggers.Now i got the clear idea about how to make back links in short time.sure i suggest this site with my friends.i hope this information will help me to increase my page rank…

  71. Mahesj October 18, 2012 at 11:00 am #

    Great post. Even i had the same thought in my mind. Quality rules and not the quantity. Do the things you do normally and backlinks will come automatically is my motto. I never waste my time on creating backlinks.

  72. Ali Hafiz October 21, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

    I have heard many bloggers talking about how backlinks become a less effective method, however this is the first time i hear someone telling people to stop link building for the sake of link building and i think this is not 100% right or wrong.

    What i am sure about is: backlinks are still a good way for both ranking and traffic.

  73. Andre October 23, 2012 at 9:14 am #

    This post will certainly help me out. I am trying my best to creating my best content for my website.

  74. ibnoe cahyadie October 27, 2012 at 8:49 pm #

    the most important thing in blogging is not only the quality of content that need to be noticed, there is still much important Grama other than quality of content, such as load time, how people will read your item which he qualified if your blog load time, realized master-frills quality content was ruled out first, which should be prioritized in blogging it is your blog load as soon as possible, in this world full of information, full of competition, not only providing you quality content. people will surely leave your item which he qualified because your blog load too slow …….

  75. Robert James November 9, 2012 at 1:28 am #

    I think ‘content is king’.If you can really write some awesome stuff,I think you are on a way to become a blogging pro.Backlinking can be useful only if visitors who visit your site has something valuable to read..!

  76. Himadri November 12, 2012 at 12:29 am #

    I do not agree with you fully but form the post i have got the point or message that you wanted to pass to your readers that we only should not imphasis on backlinks rather improving the quality of our own content.Because if we only depend on backlinks then finally the quality of our own content gets degraded.Nice share by the way.

  77. yozi_dp November 14, 2012 at 5:11 am #

    reviews of interesting, really helped me. I was looking about this,
    thanks for sharing ..
    and Greetings from Indonesia
    I am a new blogger

  78. Nathan Frazier November 16, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

    I’m glad that I found this post. SEO is no easy task; however, just from reading this blog post I feel that I have a more understanding. I will come back to this blog post and use it as a reference. I will also continue to visit your blog for you latest post because I really like your content. Take care

  79. Krunal November 26, 2012 at 6:04 am #

    Great post Andrew
    I think you have made your point pretty well.
    I believe that content is a king.Google can change algorithm for other things, but if you write quality content,
    you won’t have to worry about future algorithm changes.
    Thanks Andrew..

  80. Brady Partridge November 26, 2012 at 9:50 pm #

    How many times have you done a Google search for something and have had to contend with dozens of useless results that took you to hub pages and websites without the information you were after before you actually hit pay dirt? This is because Google gives too much heed to backlinks. If Google were to rank a site entirely on quality of content, it would make searching for something so much easier and quicker. Bring it on, I say!

  81. Lucy November 30, 2012 at 4:19 am #

    I wonder how often we come across this phrase “Quality content” and yet we fail to realize the true significance of it. Everyone mentions it but not everyone understands its value. Quality content is actually the key to your success. I would like to agree with you here that we should not worry about any Google’s strategy as long as we provide content that is qualitative and to the point.
    Lucy recently posted..Being a Leader in MLM Business Takes More Than Leading!My Profile

  82. Rusty
    Twitter:
    December 6, 2012 at 1:49 pm #

    I totally agree with your post.. Although creating backlinks are really important but since google has made several changes, we have also to make some changes as well. I believe that if you create social network profiles, you should also engage yourself to become an active member of it – share your opinions, ideas or even share your great deals about your website. Also, creating unique quality content is the king if you want google to notice your site. Although creating unique content takes time but it’s worth it.

  83. Aufa
    Twitter:
    December 9, 2012 at 1:25 am #

    Hi Andrew, it’s me again. I want to ask about paid links. What is the benefit using paid links? Is paid links is better than a free link?

  84. Saurabh December 24, 2012 at 1:26 am #

    Is it really going to happen n 2013? I just started by blog so making backlink is really tough for me. As many websites have 1000s of backlinks on my niche topic and I, don’t have 1.
    I write quality content so if backlink factor will be removed then I will rank better for my hard work.

  85. Ankit Kaul December 25, 2012 at 7:05 am #

    Very right I strongly agree with you. You should not look for backlinks but you should look for making long term relationship with fellow bloggers.
    This is the way things should go. Otherwise one day Google will eventually blacklist all these tricky link building tactics.

  86. Naser December 26, 2012 at 10:31 pm #

    Hi Andrew,

    In reference to your views………..

    “They don’t want just theory.

    They want actions they can use.

    They want to be told what to do.”

    Do you mean we should get directly to the solution while writing the article instead of explaining about the problem?

  87. Vani Chugh December 28, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    I agree with you Andrew!!!!
    we should create quality content for better ranking. as well we don’t know what will be next by Google :)

  88. Len December 28, 2012 at 7:22 pm #

    Thank you Andrew. I did a google search about backlinks, and found your article. I am a novice at this information, and your article helped put things in perspective. Everyone is telling me to backlink over and over, but I just don’t have the time, so I feel a relief not to worry so much about it. Anyway, happy holidays everyone.

  89. Marius January 2, 2013 at 7:20 am #

    Commenting is really good idea for link building (but only manual commenting), it will bring to us traffic and rise positions in serps.

  90. Taran January 4, 2013 at 12:10 pm #

    I agree with you.You have shared such a good post.I got so much info from this post.Thanks a lot.

  91. Raplus January 5, 2013 at 4:41 am #

    “It is even more important when you guest post.”

    I love this sentence. Some bloggers don’t think about quality when they write a guest post. But I believe that guest post also should be high quality.

  92. Mario Hargianto January 8, 2013 at 9:21 pm #

    The new quality policy and strategy of valuating websites and building quality backlinks are very right. They are more ethical and teleological. One naturally comes to a site for fulfilling her or his humane need of solution.

    Moreover, otherwise, it would be unfair when ordinary people having no technical knowledge of backlink building, have very publicly useful and naturally popular sites, but their sites have lower pageranks than other sites JUST because of their having less backlinks (technical reasons).

    I agree with the principle of “back to the natural, ethical, and quality links” both for pageranking and backlinking in this Andrew’s article. This is a principal article of backlinking that all backlinkers, either expert, experienced or new, have to read!

    Happy New Year For You Andrew And All Readers!

  93. Tony Rovere January 14, 2013 at 8:27 am #

    I have to say that your thesis sounds logical and true. It seems that sooner or later the search engines are moving to the point where they will be able to tell just by spidering a page whether or not a page is noteworthy or not.

    On that day, I believe that SEO will be dead and it ALL be about only one thing…quality content.

    We are probably about 10 years away from that right now, given the improvements in technology. So we might as well prepare for it now.

  94. Suvendu Manna January 14, 2013 at 9:24 am #

    A very well thought article. If we see from the angle of a search engine, they would like to find out the most useful page. And number of backlinks may provide them a pointer on the reputation of the website. Before google changed its algorithm, there might be many sites, which were having good contents. Some of those sites created backlinks from some junk sites, only to survive in the competition ( and I see nothing wrong on that). Now after changing the algorithm, Google penalized those sites. This has given a signal to all the websites not to adopt any short-cut to build up reputation for the website.
    On the same line, I believe that your points are very much valid.

  95. Gavin January 23, 2013 at 5:34 pm #

    I pretty much agree with everything you say about links here and that Content will play a major part in search this year. I’ve spoken to a lot of small business owners about having a blog on their site and many of them are resistant to committing time and resources and providing content. I guess you can understand this when there are only a few in the business – no-one wants to put their hand up for more work! But it is the way of the future.

  96. Raghavendra February 2, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    Yes sir, i really believe in this. I think for a blogger like myself, the hardwork that we give in just to get the right quality in the post should and must be appreciated by any sort of search engine. And if people are really please by our content, they will automatically backlink or share it in social media sites. You have summarized it very well sir, thank you. :)

  97. Dickie February 4, 2013 at 3:14 pm #

    I got to this post with the pop up box that appeared as I was reading another one of your posts and actually wanted to ask you what plugin/program you used to do that? I think it would hugely benefit my blog.

  98. Jignesh Rathod February 5, 2013 at 10:04 am #

    Now you said the TRUTH! Yes, this is what Google has been shouting right from the beginning, “Do it for readers, not for search engines.” Evergreen tips on SEO success. THIS is real SEO. SEO is not about cheating, it’s about providing best to audience. Thanks for sharing thoughts.

  99. larry February 6, 2013 at 11:18 pm #

    I think when it`s all said and done that quality and useful content will get the best results in terms of rankings. thanks…

  100. Krishna Parmar February 10, 2013 at 1:12 pm #

    Yes according to me backlink system will totally die and Google will come to a stage where it will only give importance to directory and other quality backlinks!
    Krishna Parmar recently posted..Samsung PC Suite & Mobile Drivers for Win 8/7/XP (Download Free)My Profile

  101. Vivek Krishnan February 11, 2013 at 6:55 am #

    Hi Andrew, I have heard a lot that the social aspect and links to your articles will become a major component in your search engine rankings. But it makes wonder how Google would be able to index and check how much the link was shared on Facebook etc.

  102. Nikhil February 14, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

    Hey Andrew,
    I’m really very lazy about commenting on any blog posts. I was concerned about building back-links to my website. Now I’m going to focus on building good content.

  103. Vikram February 17, 2013 at 9:44 am #

    Hey, You have discussed some really very important topic. Google new updates like Panda and Penguin has affected a large number of sites. I am already doing commenting and guest posting for building backlinks. These are very healthy way of building backlinks of good quality but it’s little time taking. But it’s ok if you want your website to be ranked on top.

  104. Parker Pondit February 18, 2013 at 11:01 am #

    Your opinions are indeed make sense. Google from last year updating their algorithms for better blogging experience. During that update lots of people founded their sites banned, ranking fall and many other problems. Now I’m seeing people still following same SEO strategy and relevancy is the new thing SEO workers are now following to keep up with Google. So yet Google ranking can be achievable by following old tactics and relevancy. So I don’t see backlink or old backlink tactics are not popular in Google eyes rather than slow progress result. Thanks.

  105. Ankit February 24, 2013 at 4:03 am #

    I agree with you and understand that your opinion is good and truly makes a sense. Google is the real hero as well as a villian for the SEO optimizers..

  106. Serge March 5, 2013 at 2:54 pm #

    First of all…nice post. It made me think a lot.
    I agree this is going to happen in the long run…however, it will take some time for Google to create an alghoritm to find out what is quality content and what is average content.
    In addition, backlinks are still the most important asnd relevant way for Google to understand whether someone likes your content – I agree Google finds out when someone has too many backlinks from similar sites (let’s say just blogs), however I believe Google will look for sites that have few backlinks from many different unique www’s and from different sources (some social media, some blogs, forums, review sites, edu, gov, etc).

    I am a (wannabe) affiliate marketer and am running three sites at the moment with different strategies:
    site 1 (the oldest one, 8 months)- I create some backlinks with a good combination of backlinks from different sites and different type of sites: for the moment the rankings of this site are quite good
    site 2 (age less than 1 month) – a lot of anchor text from sites with a lot of comments (probably some spammy site as well): no ranking for the moment
    site 3 (1,5 months) – some good quality backlinks driven by the quote “less is more” i.e. quality over quantity: good rankings
    site 4 (not yet started) – will try to create an affiliate site with no backlinks but just 1 or 2 reviews per week and will report on the results

    In any case thank you for sharing your thoughts

  107. devid March 14, 2013 at 9:11 am #

    Thanks Andrew Rondeau, by your comment i have come to know how to use linkedin to get links.

    Great post, I ‘m impressed

  108. Steve
    Twitter:
    March 17, 2013 at 3:29 am #

    Andrew

    I like what you are saying here. I’ve been offered many hyped up schemes which will build backlinks for you.

    So far, I have resisted.

    Steve
    Steve recently posted..How Hypnotherapy Installs Immediate ConfidenceMy Profile

  109. Elisa Navarette March 17, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

    I wasn’t even taught commenting on blogs for backlinks those are just a convenient bonus in my opinion. While I thinks it’s still a part of the equation I think anyone would be foolish to put all their eggs in one basket anymore.

    I am sooooooo glad to see a lot of those junk sites disappear and I hope that if someone is serious about building a business around their blog that they would offer quality content.

  110. jithin March 19, 2013 at 11:05 pm #

    At first i respect your knowlegde on SEO. Your post will surely becomes a perfect guide for all fresh bloggers. You have explained in detailed about how to make a good traffic to our blogs. Thank you for the valuable information sharing.

  111. Junaid Raza
    Twitter:
    March 22, 2013 at 10:50 am #

    If people do believe that you are rubbish, they will change their idea soon, you are 100% right Andrew! Google want to remove spamming, i know, its not possible at all, but, Google will surely Hurt spammers at large scale. As Google has Introduced Google Authorship, and Google Author Rank, it is clear that Google is strict against Spammers, the same strategy is about Backlinks, Google want US to use the backlinks is right way, as Andrew Explained. Google Don’t Need Backlinks for sake of Backlinks, Google want to see with readers eye, am i wrong Andrew?

  112. carolm
    Twitter:
    March 22, 2013 at 7:18 pm #

    I agree totally with your feelings about earning backlinks, just for the backlink’s sake.

    In fact I resent the way Google ‘judges’ a site’s authority by the number and quality of your backlinks.

    There must be a better way of assessing the worth (to readers) of a website. Although I don’t know what it is – from Google’s method of Ranking point of view.

    And you said something that surprised me:

    “You should set up social site profiles because you want to share other people’s work.”

    Other people’s work? Really? I thought social media was all about promoting your own brand.

    And now I’m going to confess something controversial: I wish social media did not exist. I really do. Not for anyone, anywhere. The world would be a nicer, kinder, safer, more thoughtful, more productive and more creative place.

    So there. :)
    carolm recently posted..Design Classy Banners & Forms With Mac Word: Easy & FREE!My Profile

  113. carolm
    Twitter:
    March 24, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    You make me laugh, Andrew: I don’t share my own content through social media – I let it sit there and wait for people to find me – I think I have a marketing problem! :)
    carolm recently posted..Get Coolest FREE Tool Ever! The Headline Marketing Analysis CheckerMy Profile

  114. Tasneem Ishaque March 25, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

    Informative article for a newbie like me. I think Guest posting is the best way to build backlinks. Guest posting on blogs with high PR and DA will give you do-follow links and you will have a brighter chance to increase your page rank. As well as,these links will remain with you until the blog owner deletes your guest post.

  115. tressa knight March 30, 2013 at 12:31 am #

    its my personal views that quality back links will not end they can be off any resource say bookmarking,blogs,forums etc…but how you deployed it..the mean is more important for getting the link place and make feel search engine as a natural/real links

  116. Maddy April 2, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    Guest posting is the only quality technique to build good backlinks, I have tried other techniques and really penalized by Google in those keywords. But guest posting is really difficult and time consuming now. :(
    Maddy recently posted..Solution for iTunes Error 3194 while Restoring or Updating iOSMy Profile

  117. Racquel April 4, 2013 at 6:01 am #

    Hi,

    Nice article. True its all about being found o the net. Started my own website with a blog in it and wanted that people who could be intrested in my zumba classes would find me. So i started a facebook group to have close contact with my students and a webiste for getting new students and for making my excisting ones proud about there classes. My site is less than a month online and i rank 1 on my main search terms being zumba oostende. I did no blog spamming or annything else. Just a good url, correct and search friendly seo content. Sure i only need visitors who are near my town so that makes it more eassy.

    If you have a wordpress org blog you could also loock at yoast for a verry good seo plugin.

    Rel author is becomming verry inmportant for google so dont forget to make a google + account and make your blog checked as rel author.

    Greets

    Racquel

  118. Fashstylo April 8, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

    Amazing and super post.
    you are right Andrew. One should not comment or write a guest post just to gain a back link. It is to be done to build up our brand name. Even though the importance of back links is too much. But, one should not spam for back links.
    Fashstylo recently posted..The Simple Way That Help You Live LongerMy Profile

  119. Oscar April 9, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

    Building the backlinks have never been easier for me. I’m working on it right away to improve my SERP and Pagerank. Thanks for the article.

  120. Gascone April 17, 2013 at 6:05 pm #

    Hey Andrew, really interesting how you mentioned that thing. These comment links are about being involved in
    the community or a part of being active in your market. Interacting with other people and having links naturally arise because of your engagement with the market. It’s also very social kind of link. All things that Google just loves… extremely white hat low-risk backlinks. Unfortunately, it looks like these comment links are here to stay, second to social media backlinks. Most of them have emerged because of the changes that Google has made in their algorithms for the last couple of years. I’m a newbie and all this link building has been a pain in the… ;)
    Gascone recently posted..Comment on 8 by GASCONEMy Profile

  121. Ritz April 27, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

    Andrew

    Nice post for the guys who are writing good content.

    Few questions in my mind…

    1. Its very easy to show that your content is worth reading..few laptops with different IPs and stay on the content for long time.
    2. Decrease the bounce rate by clicking on links of website.
    3. Create 1000 email ids and share.

    Back links will stay here and will stay for long time…the only thing that will change is how you get backlinks.

    Directories link will go away… more priority will be on how credible is the author..there are lot of another factors but back links will stay for sure

    • Andrew from Blogging Guide
      Twitter:
      April 30, 2013 at 6:04 am #

      Ritz

      From the things you mention…it sounds like a lot of work to generate any real benefit.

      By writing great content, people will naturally do some of the things you mention.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..How To Convert More Visitors Into CustomersMy Profile

      • ritz April 30, 2013 at 9:23 am #

        Andrew

        Its feasible from a bloggers point of view.. what about the companies which sell their products only..apple, microsoft..samsung..should they start writing content…they definitely will make backlinks for their products..

  122. Bob Richards April 29, 2013 at 8:44 pm #

    Just one issue with your logic. You can have incredible content–the cure for cancer. But no one will fin it unless you are ranked on the first page of google and the only way that happens is BACKLINKS!!! Google has no way to know what is quality content. Their bot cannot read. Their bot can only assume the content is good if you have a lot and or high quality backlinks pointing to your site. There is plenty of worthless content on hr first p[age of the search results because it is published on “authority” sites – i.e. the sites with lots of backlinks.

    • Andrew from Blogging Guide
      Twitter:
      April 30, 2013 at 6:06 am #

      Bob,

      People will find out without backlinks due to your own marketing strategy like social media and sharing with your own lists. Doing that will generate backlinks and if the content is great, others will share.

      You say: “There is plenty of worthless content on the first page of the search results because it is published on “authority” sites – i.e. the sites with lots of backlinks.”

      That will change…over time.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..How To Convert More Visitors Into CustomersMy Profile

  123. Alex May 3, 2013 at 7:04 am #

    Good post. I always focus on my content if my content is worthy for users they share it so i don’t have to share. In short users do my job.

  124. Santhosh Kumar May 4, 2013 at 12:22 am #

    To be frank what you said is true. The backlinking strategy is coming to an end. Social media and quality content plays a major role for blog ranking. Thanks for this great article.

  125. Jake May 14, 2013 at 4:24 pm #

    I do hope you’re right. It makes more sense for Google to base rank according to the quality of the content offered and by actual stats. I do see many problems arising with rank based on Social Media stats as well though. With the ability to back link thousands of times from social networks with no repercussions, there are far too many illegitimate sites that are gaining rank now. Plus many sites are now selling facebook likes, twitter tweets and so on. Things have changed tremendously from the days of basing your success on actual customer service and business ethics. Great Article by the way :)

  126. Karen May 16, 2013 at 3:38 am #

    I agree with you.Backlinking strategy is really on end.
    Thanks for shearing such a good information.

  127. Ahsan
    Twitter:
    May 19, 2013 at 8:49 am #

    Hello Andrew,

    Very informative & resourceful post for bloggers. I think the best way is to write unique & informative content. So we don’t need to bother Google algorithm or penguin update.
    Ahsan recently posted..How To Add Google Plus Comment Box In Your WordPress SiteMy Profile

  128. christian moore May 27, 2013 at 12:36 pm #

    I have made experiment on few websites, and I think fresh daily content plays the most important role in new Google algorithm update. I agree with you that many practice “Grey Hat SEO” and get spammy backlinks, however, I also think that Google still values quality backlinks from related websites. I have seen how my websites have ranked on the first page with fewer than 50 quality backlinks and daily new content.

  129. Adam May 28, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    I think that the way to do this is content marketing. Don’t worry about the back links but get your message and your work out there. If you do a good job people will link to you and people will find you. If you are only building links one of the Google updates will eventually slam you because you aren’t doing it naturally.

  130. hiren June 3, 2013 at 2:35 am #

    nice post now i am try to write quality content. in now time i always want increase backlinks but now i know that without quality content backlink cant increase thaks for share this article

  131. Govand Malhani June 6, 2013 at 12:47 pm #

    Great post Andrew. In two words it is all about quality and relationship building. Both of these skills take time and patience to build.Thanks for sharing
    Also Visit my blog http://www.parufile.com/

  132. Suzen Pettit June 10, 2013 at 9:03 am #

    Oy is all i have to say, Andrew. Well not all, but it’s my first response. There is so much confusion as to what constitutes a good traffic source and backlink…well, unless I am a dental clinic looking for a backlink from a blogging site. That’s pretty straight forward. But i think your take on strategy is spot on. Comment because you gained value, guest post because you only welcome top notch content and over all be authentic in your link building strategy, always try to create great USABLE content and someday, one day, your rankings will rise and you’ll be owning the search engines. by the way i got tto you via the awesome post by Ana Hoffman

    http://www.trafficgenerationcafe.com/feng-shui-link-building/

    • Andrew from Blogging Guide
      Twitter:
      June 12, 2013 at 8:12 am #

      Hi Suzen,

      Thanks for coming across.

      It’s a shame more people don’t have your (my) approach to back linking. Or perhaps it’s good that people do! Makes it easier for us to rank…in the long run.

      Andrew
      Andrew recently posted..Top 7 Mistakes Blog Owners MakeMy Profile

  133. Nauman June 12, 2013 at 9:19 am #

    Thanks Andrew for the great insight. I agree with most of your points – but does it mean we should forget doing off-site SEO altogether. If yes, then genuine backlinks that are naturally build take a lot of time..which in turn means ranking at a slow pace.

  134. Gurwinder Singh Bhinder June 15, 2013 at 1:19 am #

    Thanks for sharing this article Andrew.
    I believe, guest posting is one of the best and evergreen ways of building backlinks. If you are not being benefitted then I guess you are doing it in wrong way, I think Jane from probloggingsuccess has written an article on this.

    And blog commenting is also great way to build backlinks.

  135. zumaira ali June 19, 2013 at 9:09 am #

    well, I’m glad you mentioned returning visitors, Andrew. I am convinced that the return rate is becoming quite important, more so than the bounce rate, which is relative.

  136. Mike Patel June 20, 2013 at 5:08 am #

    yaa man i agree with you and also seen some blog and people whose account was banned by Google because of this all such type of spamming activities.. Now you have no more option without your own good and effective content.. just do it well and don’t copy anyone.. Google surely notice you..

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      June 21, 2013 at 3:59 am #

      Mike,

      Spinning, copying, article directories…all old school, now.

      Andrew

  137. Jose Granada June 26, 2013 at 10:31 am #

    In my practical opinion quality backlinks still count. Maybe backlinks don’t count as much as they used to, but they still do. Of course you need to find other sinergies with social networks (especially google+) and post new fresh quality content periodically, but without good backlinks you will never reach the top results for your keywords. It’s my humble opinion, and I still agree with 90% of what’s written on the post. Thanks!

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 22, 2013 at 8:49 am #

      Jose,

      Backlinks are still important but getting less so.

      It’s natural backlinks that are still very important…not forced ones.

      Andrew

  138. Josh Brancek June 27, 2013 at 11:02 pm #

    Andrew, thanks a lot for these tips!!! I am struggling to rank sites after these animal updates and I hope these tips will work!!!

  139. Stephen Cowan July 10, 2013 at 10:18 am #

    For the most part I agree with your article. When you were first tackling Meta tags you should have mentioned titles are still a strong ranking factor today :).

    Also concerning Bob Richards comment that even if you write world class content that unless you rank well people will not find it. I felt exactly the same way you do for a very long time and felt all this talk about writing quality content will get you the rankings you need is not necessarily true. You can’t just write amazing content and expect it to go viral. Unless you already have an established following and popular blog you need to spend some time marketing your content. If you know you have something worth reading for many eyeballs you need to market that content via social media, networking and word of mouth. It’s not hard this day in age to spread the word about something new or interesting. If you can get your content in front of the right people they alone can make your work explode with popularity.

    Also Andrew your article felt almost as if I wrote it myself. This is exactly my style as well as my way of thinking as far as back links and ranking is concerned.
    Great post thank you for sharing.

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 22, 2013 at 8:52 am #

      Stephen

      I understand exactly what you are saying. Of course, until you become known for great content, you have to market. And even if you are known for great content…you have to market!

      It’s those natural backlinks that we should be aiming for…not forced ones.

      Andrew

  140. Denis July 13, 2013 at 6:52 am #

    Just one issue with your logic. You can have incredible content–the cure for cancer. But no one will fin it unless you are ranked on the first page of google and the only way that happens is BACKLINKS!!! Google has no way to know what is quality content. Their bot cannot read. Their bot can only assume the content is good if you have a lot and or high quality backlinks pointing to your site. There is plenty of worthless content on hr first p[age of the search results because it is published on “authority” sites – i.e. the sites with lots of backlinks.

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 22, 2013 at 8:55 am #

      Danis

      You have great content on the ‘cure for cancer’…people will find it. Firstly, the owner will market it and then others will do the same and that is what generates natural backlinks.

      If it’s great content, you don’t need backlinks to be found in the first instance.

      Andrew

  141. Ashutosh July 20, 2013 at 11:27 pm #

    Commenting is not only commenting but adding up to conversations. Well said point and I completely agree with you. I believe that commenting is an important aspect of bloggers, it is a kind of media that we as a blogger require. Blogging isn’t only restricted to Posting but more importantly towards communicating with our fellow bloggers.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the value of commenting that extends much beyond only backlinking.

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      July 22, 2013 at 8:56 am #

      Ashutosh

      Since writing the article I think even commenting is losing its appeal to generating backlinks.

      Andrew

  142. Elisabeth July 22, 2013 at 10:41 pm #

    Great post..
    I am struggling to rank sites after these animal updates and I hope these tips will useful to me..
    Thanks Andrew for your share..

  143. Saj July 28, 2013 at 6:58 pm #

    This scares me a bit. Google changes things once a while, but I often read blogs and I make a relevant comment because I want to learn more and be part of the conversations. Because of this, more backlinks I get are from blog comments. But if that’s going to be an issue with google in the near future, commenting may have to change all together. I’ve noticed facebook style commenting in most blogs now a day.

  144. aziz July 29, 2013 at 1:38 pm #

    Nice article,well written and composed,your ideas and advice about backlink is great,tips rather than making backlink are great,social media is great for the promotion of site or a blog,and tips about comments is great the valuable comment attract the traffic as well as the article writer.Thank for sharing these helpful tips.

  145. piyush001 July 30, 2013 at 12:14 pm #

    i also need more end less back-links for my blog.. i want to get more traffic in my blog without spamming activity..

  146. Rita P August 5, 2013 at 4:47 am #

    Good post Andrew. Creating a quality content and writing unique things on your blogs definitely will help you in longer run. These shortcuts of getting spammy backlinks never help you to build a quality website. If you are good in your niche, you can always build a community by commenting on their blogs which gives good credibility to you also.

  147. Suzanna August 12, 2013 at 9:48 am #

    Andrew, I really hope that your predictions about quality content will become true. I have been on Internet since the late 80s (as I worked at a university in Europe) and only universities had access to the internet. The content was AMAZING. Then it started to go downhill as more and more people were building websites. The worse happened when WordPress made it easy to build a website. Until then, at least one to have to learn HTML, etc… WordPress is great, but all the people streaming out and creating websites, often very bad ones. Nowadays, it is almost unbelievable how much “crap” is out there. So that’s why I hope quality content will prevail, because only people who are serious about their writing/blogs will keep putting the energy and effort to deliver good content. I also feel that the social media will be one day not as significant. With this overload of information that everybody is posting on FB, Twitter, Google+ etc, there is no time to read any of those links. Soon, people will ignore all the shared content, because it is just way too much. I guess we just have to slowly build our follower base through writing stuff that is very interesting to them and they want to follow forever :-)

    • Andrew
      Twitter:
      August 14, 2013 at 8:20 am #

      Suzanna

      I really do think the great content writers will survive and succeed. I suppose it is down to what is great content.

      Recently, Google have been talking a lot about ‘natural’ links. i.e. links from other sites that link to your content. They feel if people link to your site content and share it, then it must be good quality. Of course, there are numerous other calculations in their algorithm to determine great content…if only we knew what it was!

      Andrew

  148. Tauseef Alam August 12, 2013 at 10:38 pm #

    Hi

    I partially agree with you. Although Google & other search engines are always searching for the ways to find alternative of links but still link building has a greater impact on SERP.

  149. nelson September 25, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

    Not sure when was this blog post written but currently google penalizes abuse of backlink. (just saying this cause you mention above that many just create a big large amount of links to rank better).

  150. Sagar
    Twitter:
    April 17, 2014 at 3:20 am #

    Nice and very informative post

    I fully agree that we should abort building backlinks for our site through blog commenting, guest posting and other techniques. Each of these techniques has their own way of optimizing like the commenting on blogs only to share your opinion about the topic,

    Guest posting for creating awareness for our product or services to wider audience. Social profiles to share ours and other work too. We can surely use them for building back links but using them for its respective purpose is even a smarter way to do optimization.The unique content on our blog and simple optimization technique would anyhow bring good traffic to our website.

    Great post i hope this post may help many others.

    Thank you for sharing
    Sagar recently posted..List of Top 20 Good Reasons Why to Quit your Job GracefullyMy Profile

  151. Uchenna April 23, 2014 at 4:46 am #

    Personally I think, if the search engines could do without backlinks, they would have done so, a long time ago. Ironically, it was using backlinks as a ranking signal that made Google what it is today, so it would be the equivalent of them biting the hand that has fed them all these years.

    When it comes to quality content, this is still a fairly ambiguous area, it’s very difficult, if not impossible to write an algorithm that can determine whether a piece of content is of good quality or not. Signals such as bounce rate are too sketchy, as the premise is flawed. Just because an individual spends a small amount of time on a page, before living it doesn’t necessarily mean the content on that page is of poor quality.

    Matt Cutts also spoke about this, how the signal was too loud, which is why they don’t use it. He also said that they tried running Google Search without backlinks as a ranking signal and the results were disastrous. So I don’t see links EVER going out of fashion, that’s the sad reality. If Google wants to clear up all the spam links out there, they are going to have to take a more proactive approach, like they’re doing now, by individually banning link networks.

  152. aceclue May 11, 2014 at 3:37 am #

    Andrew,

    What a great post. I believe though that many people might have said NO to this thought when you publish this article. Even though they might not make it known in the comment. The thought you shared was and is quite a bitter true then and now.

    Only people with insight could readily absorb the notion and put in their daily blogging habits when the hitting search engine algorithm updates are made public.

    The fact is to be natural in publishing information online. I do it and it pays. As for the backlink, it has direct link with page rank. But is quite funny that Google don’t lay emphases on Pagerank and backlinks to rank web pages on its SERPs.

    The key is to write quality contents that initiate readers engagement and social sharing. Quality backlinks will seamlessly follow as a reward for the hard work.

    Thanks for sharing the thought.

  153. Rakesh Desai May 21, 2014 at 4:45 am #

    I must say that even i disagree at first, but after reading the whole thing I am quite convinced. I agree that blog commenting is getting too spammy as guest posting but other activity can still work in decent way. But yeah, nothing can beat quality content and its the only way to success for any business.

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