Excerpts from my latest article at Practical eCommerce: “SEO: Avoid Link Building Shortcuts.”

There are no safe link building shortcuts. Instead I want to warn marketers about deceptive search marketers and the dangers of using “easy” link building tactics. In the latest instance, the search engine optimization community is abuzz with news that Home Depot’s SEO team has attempted to increase its link portfolio by potentially shady means. Last year, J.C. Penney and even Google’s own Chrome browser marketing site were reportedly penalized by Google Search for violating linking guidelines.

The temptation to manipulate rankings by acquiring links through unethical means is easy to understand: Links are the lifeblood of the Internet and a major factor in every major search engine’s ranking algorithms. In theory, more links means better rankings. In reality, the engines compile data across hundreds of factors algorithmically to determine rankings, and links are just one part. We’ll look at some link building tactics as examples of what not to do.

Read the article in full at “SEO: Avoid Link Building Shortcuts.” »

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