A long time ago....
I have been around the Internet for a couple decades now and have seen how professional services websites have evolved over the years. Back in the day (I am dating myself here: the late 1990s, early 2000s) there wasn’t much to websites compared to what we have today. The fact that you even managed to get a website online was monumental and futuristic on many levels. There weren’t many standards for websites in general and you could put all kinds of keywords and links in your pages to affect your SEO rank with Yahoo, Webcrawler, etc. The game then was, more or less, put as many keywords as you wanted on a bunch of pages and link them in/out of your website and BOOM, you are on page #1.
Fast forward to today, search engines are 1,000 times smarter and there are hundreds of standards to guide you in designing/developing a great website. Link building is very important, but over the years hundreds of websites have popped up with great claims to rank you on page #1 with Google. All you have to do is buy XX-links per month and you are there. Again, WOW, you made it to page #1, top 10 search results.
But wait, that is not the case anymore.
Google, which is the leader in search/rank, really knows whether you are putting in the work to get to #1 or just trying to buy your way to the top.
Here are 4 reasons why PAID LINKS killed my website ranking.
- Paid links are really a short-term gain. Just like the body builder who wants to cut corners without really spending the time to work at getting better. Paid links get you there quickly but cause massive damage in the long run. The damage happens when (not if) Google finds you out; then they penalize you big time for buying your way to the top.
- Paid links are like most interrupt marketing. You are making it all about you and not your customer. So basically you are paying to be in everyone’s face all the time, whether or not they want it. How many of you really like the 20 commercials in a great TV show or the 30 ads on your favorite blog site?
- Paid links are really the lazy way out. If you are serious about building great traffic to your website, you need to put in the effort it takes to get there. If you are buying paid links, you are not building good habits in building an online presence tailored to your customer’s buyer persona.
- “Na, Na, Bo, Bo….I’m gonna tell on you!” All kids say that at some point. When you buy paid links to boost your ranking, you run the risk that your competitors will tell on you. Just like the body-builder who is trying to cheat at getting stronger, you competitor can and will tell on you for using lots of paid links.
So what are the key take-aways from this article?
- Spend the time blogging and writing about your business services and products.
- Get social on social media. Have regular conversations with others online about your industry.
- Spend the time researching what keywords people are actually searching for and not just guessing.
- Don’t forget to link from your social media to your blog articles! This builds great organic links that Google gives you. GOOGLE LOVE!
- PUT IN THE EFFORT! Don’t just cheat your way to the top, because cheaters never win. Hard work and consistency will get you there and keep you there.
- Lastly, if you don’t know where to get started and this seems too big a task, download our handbook on how to get started with blogging and social media.