Links suck, I loathe them, I loathe them almost as much as the term ‘SEO’ (that’s a rant for another time!) and if you’re hell bent on building links over everything else then I loathe you too.
Why? Links are primitive and Google knows it.
I don’t build links for a living, I never have yet it still doesn’t stop people assuming because I mention ‘SEO’ I build links.
I don’t. Link building is a last resort for those that haven’t got the sense, creativity or patience to produce a website worth talking about.
The point I’m trying to make is that links are a side effect of providing something of value to visitors to your website, if you do a good enough job you’ll earn links and won’t need to build them which is EXACTLY what Google tells you to do. Furthermore, you will be at ZERO risk of Unnatural Link Google Penalties for that very reason.
Repeat after me: Links for SEO, say no!
The problem with ‘Link Builders” is that they’re thinking of links before website users: It’s a backwards strategy. If you’re going out to build links, I’m sorry, you don’t get it. You (Or your agency) should be thinking hard about how you can satisfy a users quest for information first and foremost. There’s nothing natural about “building” links…they should be earned naturally!
Why Links are Primitive?
When you really think about it, links are a really crappy way of signaling a site is worthy of being found and essentially work like this:
‘A link from one website to another website is a vote from site A for site B.’ See?
Rubbish. Hence why they’ve been abused for YEARS. When Google first opened it’s doors we didn’t have better signals so if you’re putting all of your eggs in the link building basket you’re about 10 years behind the rest of us.
Google knows links suck and recently tested a version of its search engine without links. In fact as recently as this week Google even announced that links will become less important over time. I’m not saying links will disappear completely, yet, but they are a very basic and simplistic way of ranking a website hence why Google is experimenting with more ‘meaningful’ signals.
You see, anyone can arrange for a link but Joe public doesn’t necessarily have a website to link from. They do however use Social Media, leave reviews, and hit their back button if they land on a site that looks awful. There’s a raft of usability signals that will one day work themselves into Google’s algorithms rendering the significance of links lower and lower.
That’s the way it’s going I tell you! A search engine that rewards good service and experience. Tis the future!
If you want to build something, don’t build links, build a brand and you’ll earn those links!