Dumb SEO Questions

(Entry was posted by Gifts and Gadgets on this post in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Friday, February 27, 2015).

How does anyone gets 120 000 active back-links?

Hi All,  

In the last three years, I tried six different SEO companies.
All of them left me with the feeling I was completely ripped-off.
One of them even succeeded to create a list of back- links that I recently found to be nothing less than bad links, and I am still in the process of getting rid of them myself.

I suppose you will understand that I have become very weary of outsourcing the SEO of my website.
I am now thus, trying to get my head around this myself with the help of hopefully, some good community advice, and some good software.

Doing so, I entered a trial period on SEOprofiler, and any feedback on this software is appreciated.
But that`s not my main question. My main problem is far more complicated, as you will read below 

One of the first things that caught my attention when I was over-viewing SEOprofiler, was the "competitor watch list", and I noticed something very peculiar on there.
Nine of the ten nearest competitors, according to SEOprofiler that is, have anywhere between 20 and 3000 back-links. 
Our top competitor, however,  has more than 120 000 links! 
We have about 200 links left  (after I got rid of about 500 sh*tty links thanks to my SEO "professionals"), and I was a bit stunned by this: 
How does anyone gets 120 000 active back-links to his/her website??
And that`s where I started digging a bit deeper, and the whole setup became crystal clear after a few minutes: 
They have taken copies of each product category OF THE MAIN WEBSITE,  and published these categories as a new domain with a domain name related to the according product category.
So, while the links of the menu structure of the copied site can be used to browse the pages of this copied website, ALL  other links such as text links, image URL`s, additional categories, additional menus, etc,  point back to their main website.
Besides that there is a recurring side menu that randomly links up all the other domains.
Bottom line is that this is a web of hundreds of, more or less,  functional websites, but in the end, all the link juice go`s to the main site.

My question now is: How do I compete with this? And is this not completely in breach with all current good Google practices? 
And if I ever want to stop paying Google a fortune on Adwords campaigns, am I not forced to go the very same route to only stand a chance to get some decent organic results? 
I find it very discouraging that Google puts his foot down on a few hundred bad links, but at the same time allows this kind of link scheme with tens of thousands of links to happen.

Your honest opinion is highly appreciated 

Edwin

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YOUR ANSWERS

Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions G+ community.

  • Gifts and Gadgets: Hi All, ;

    In the last three years, I tried six different SEO companies.
    All of them left me with the feeling I was completely ripped-off.
    One of them even succeeded to create a list of back- links that I recently found to be nothing less than bad links, and I am still in the process of getting rid of them myself.

    I suppose you will understand that I have become very weary of outsourcing the SEO of my website.
    I am now thus, trying to get my head around this myself with the help of hopefully, some good community advice, and some good software.

    Doing so, I entered a trial period on SEOprofiler, and any feedback on this software is appreciated.
    But that's not my main question. My main problem is far more complicated, as you will read below ;

    One of the first things that caught my attention when I was over-viewing SEOprofiler, was the "competitor watch list", and I noticed something very peculiar on there.
    Nine of the ten nearest competitors, according to SEOprofiler that is, have anywhere between 20 and 3000 back-links. ;
    Our top competitor, however,  ;has more than 120 000 links! ;
    We have about 200 links left  ;(after I got rid of about 500 sh*tty links thanks to my SEO "professionals"), and I was a bit stunned by this: ;
    How does anyone gets 120 000 active back-links to his/her website???
    And that's where I started digging a bit deeper, and the whole setup became crystal clear after a few minutes: ;
    They have taken copies of each product category OF THE MAIN WEBSITE,  ;and published these categories as a new domain with a domain name related to the according product category.
    So, while the links of the menu structure of the copied site can be used to browse the pages of this copied website, ALL  ;other links such as text links, image URL's, additional categories, additional menus, etc,  ;point back to their main website.
    Besides that there is a recurring side menu that randomly links up all the other domains.
    Bottom line is that this is a web of hundreds of, more or less,  ;functional websites, but in the end, all the link juice go's to the main site.

    My question now is: How do I compete with this? And is this not completely in breach with all current good Google practices? ;
    And if I ever want to stop paying Google a fortune on Adwords campaigns, am I not forced to go the very same route to only stand a chance to get some decent organic results? ;
    I find it very discouraging that Google puts his foot down on a few hundred bad links, but at the same time allows this kind of link scheme with tens of thousands of links to happen.

    Your honest opinion is highly appreciated ;

    Edwin ;
  • paul campagna: In my experience, Google will punish them if it is "illegal" to them. - When they do, it might take months to get back to where they were, but if you just do things the way they "should" be done, it will work out in the end. ; Now that's not saying it won't take a long time, just that it is better to stay on their, (Google's) good side, than to try and "game" the system. - I try and explain that to people, but because Google constantly changes, with little to no warning, you just have to do things s legit as possible and you should not be penalized after some animal update. .
  • Niscoveanu Florin: As + ;said, they will probably get punished in the future (even giants like Expedia can trigger a penalty). So try to play by the rules as much as you can, and remember that nowadays the quality and relevance of the link matters more than the number of links.

    The small businesses are always left with the hardest part as they can't get any coverage unless they are able to create something viral.
  • Hala Ali: + ; I always tell clients to focus on service, brand and content if they focus on their service and a good long term marketing strategy they will get into Google and stay there.
  • Dustin Watson: They will get punished by google its only a matter of when.
    The simplest answer is you have to build depth within your site or brand. Link building tactics have changed drastically...
    Social signals is the new "link building" or all natural baby....
    Let links happen natural
    That competitor that your worried about are idiots just like thinking seo is about link building..
    There is so much more to it..
    Ok to get u on the right track heres some solid places to get a good grasp on what seo really is
    Moz.com
    Search engine land
    Davidboozer
    These are just afew but seo is a good strategy that really helps drive traffic to your site..
    Stupid link building strategys and cowardly seo clowns r making the industry look back.
    Important...always know the folks controling your digital presence, the web as alot of dark secrets...
  • Gifts and Gadgets: + ;
    + ;
    + ;
    + ;

    Hi everyone, ;
    Thanks for your comments and encouragement between the lines. :-)
    Guess we'll just have to hang in there, but paying the Google Adword bills knowing what is happening out there is not really making doing  ;business on the web and especially the SEO part of it, a happier experience for small businesses.

    Anyway, I am running this test period on SEOProfiler, and I do have the feeling that this might work.
    I am now getting outlined tasks that I would need to tackle, which I will outsource task per task, and I will evaluate how this works out.
    As said, i have tried six different SEO companies, and I have been scammed by each and everyone of them.

    Indeed as + ;says: ;cowardly seo clowns r making the industry look back, and from personal experience, I have been burned one to many times to just hand over my SEO and trust that all will come right.
    It's a pity that an industry is plagued by this kind of fly-by-nights, but it is a fact,  ;and it's also a fact that I am done with it.

    Cheers, and thanks again!

    Edwin ;

View original question in the Dumb SEO Questions community on G+, Friday, February 27, 2015).

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