I was enjoying the A4uexpo in Amsterdam, the people, the events and sessions (and the bar of course) but there was one specific thing I was concerned about and it was the mention of the “Golden Bullet” back links.
It was made perfectly clear in the expo from all the SEO guys there that the best and most effective way of driving traffic to a website is via back links. Lets repeat that, get BACK LINKS… still not clicking? JUST GET BACK LINKS. (though of course adding good content is a natural generator of back links as well and makes life a little easier).
But, bearing in mind that the internet is pretty vast, and also that im currently trying to help a client deal with a rather unscrupulous rip off merchant based on the other side of the planet, the question arouse about using back links and generating back links to your competitors.
eh? give my competitors back links? Are you mental?
nope. But I wish I was.
Who said they had to be good back links?
Let me clarify. Simply put the Google algorithm likes high quality sites (lets say for example, the BBC.co.uk). As far as Google are concerned the BBC can basically do no wrong, its respected, established and considered an authority. Hence its always pretty nice to get a back link from them to you by being news worthy in some form or other. Also it would be high on impossible to pull them down with the Golden Bullet Backlink due to this already established authority.
Hence we all work hard at generating back links, a mention, and editorial, or advertorial to include a link from these respected authority sites to your own.
Reverse Engineering Backlinks
But what if you decided to reverse engineer the back linking protocol? How about targeting all your competitors and generating back links to them from the dirtiest, scummiest, spammy websites around all the bad neighbourhoods on the internet… god its scary, but it seems that these “services” are currently on offer. Its also been a concern of mine for some time and a reason I hate the requirement of back links as they are simply beyond your control.
Now you add all these back links to your competitors and there rankings begin to drop, their respect and authority is reduced and you climb the rankings to fill the void. Result. Also how do you think they will remove these back links?
Think about this for a second.
Thought about it? Any ideas?… me either.
It would be a manual, long winded process of sending emails and requests if not downright begging letters to these bad neighbourhoods to try and convince them to remove this god forsaken link that’s hurting your site. Do you think they would care? Now imagine you had 1000 of these links pointing at you from 1000 different sites.
That has got to be a scary, scary situation to be in.
The Golden Bullet
The way it stands now is that you can actually employ services to utilise this tactic on your behalf. I’m not clear on the numbers, the effectiveness, or how Google (never mind LIVE and Yahoo) actually reacts to this or what processes are in place to address it, but will certainly be looking into it.
If any of you guys know anything about it, please do drop me a comment but in the meantime, please dont think about walking down this road!