A new rise in Google abuse

Filed under: — 4:08 pm

I’m the webmaster of The Quotations Page, which ranks highly on Google. I’ve been getting more and more inquiries from people who want to “buy links” on my pages. I sell banner and text ads, but what they want is a hard link. The idea here is to exploit my page’s rank in Google for the good of theirs – and of course, theirs is usually selling Propecia or cheap vacations. I have turned down five of these people, offering over $500, in the last month, and this appears to be a growing trend. Here’s a typical example of one of these offers:

I will give you 100usd if you give me link somewhere on your page. Can be at the bottom, doesnt matter. Purpose of this is not to lure your visitors to my page. I need your link because you are visible in search engines and i will receive more visibility too. My page is [DELETED] Please reply if you are interested. Thank you for understanding.
Most of these people have offered a lump sum, from $100 to $500, for the links. They usually want links on “at least 100 pages” or some other number. And they insist the links be direct, rather than going through a CGI script like my advertising links normally do. I’ve been reading similar stories on the Amazon Associates forum, so I’m not the only one.

If you run a site and get offers like this, you may be tempted to accept them – after all, ad revenue is scarce these days – but I don’t recommend it. For one thing, I have way too much respect for Google to participate in abusing it. For another reason, keep in mind what happened to Search King. The last thing you want, if you have a high-ranking site, is for Google to suspect you of abuse. My site is #1 in searches for quotes and quotations and I would like to keep it that way.

I can only assume Google will find these abuses and correct them, so this trend hopefully won’t last long. And any high-ranking site that does participate is going to end up at the bottom of the list like Search King.

5 responses to “A new rise in Google abuse”

  1. Four emails this month on the same subject. The trend continues…

  2. Scott says:

    You have a page rank (PR) of 6. That is very good, but it is not so good that some extra links pointing to you wouldn’t hurt. IF the sites that want a link from you suck, are porn, have nothing to do with your type of site, or have a really low PR why not exchange links with them?

  3. Tom says:

    I don’t think these are abuses at all. This is the arena built by Google. In order to achieve a high pagerank (i.e. survive), other good sites must link to your site. How does this happen? Should we sit on a stool in the ice-cream shop and wait to be discovered? No, silly, you email the webmasters and ask for a link. I would view the offer of money as a red-flag, though. If they are not good enough for a gratis link, then maybe they’re just not good enough.

  4. I’m not talking about people who email asking for links – I’m talking about people who try to buy a (very unrelated) link. “Hi, I notice you have a popular site about quotations. Can you link to my site about Viagra?)”

    The site in question has a PR that varies from 7 to 8, hence the popularity for these requests.

    Needless to say, the sites sending the requests tend to be PR0 sites. I don’t want them to link to my site, and might even get banned from Google for linking to them…

  5. Chico says:

    I am in agreement with Scott. If you can buy links or sell them why not. It is nothing more than just business.

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