As soon as we thought the slew of updates from Google was over, on July 26, they released a new update revolving around link spam.
And as of August 9, Google’s search liaison Danny Sullivan confirmed that this update was still processing.
Brief Overview of the Update
Google stated “in our continued efforts to improve the quality of the search results, we’re launching a new link spam fighting change today — which we call the “link spam update.” This algorithm update, which will roll out across the next two weeks, is even more effective at identifying and nullifying link spam more broadly, across multiple languages. Sites taking part in link spam will see changes in Search as those links are re-assessed by our algorithms.”
It is important to note they say nullify, not penalize, which means they will ignore site’s spammy links as counting towards their backlink count.
However, if you are relying heavily on spammy links to gain rank, you may see a drop in your keyword positions as your backlink profile slims down.
How to Avoid Spammy Links
According to Google’s advice, here are some ways to ensure you are not participating in spammy link activity:
- Do not offer, or accept, monetary compensation, gifts, or services for links
- Avoid link exchanges (ex: I’ll link to you if you link to me)
- Investing in automated link programs
- Use link identifiers such as rel=”sponsored” on affiliate links and rel=”ugc” for user generated content
- Use tools such as Moz to see a site’s spam score to get better knowledge of types of site’s Google may deem as spammy
Some Ways You Can Obtain Quality Links
To avoid wasting your time on unqualified links, try some of these tactics:
- Write strong content that other websites will want to link to
- This is not limited to blog posts – but product pages as well
- Create relationships with writers in your industry
- Use sources like HARO, Qwoted, and Terkel to gain authority
- Look for unlinked mentions of your brand and staff
- Get involved in directories related to your industry