I don’t blog much these days, which is probably a mistake, but once in a while I come across a story that tugs at my soul which in turn gives me an opportunity to present my own opinion about the subject.
I have been a digital marketing professional for over 9 years and as a result I have seen my share of online tactics and strategies for both paid search and SEO. In the last year Panda, as well as the mighty Penguin update, affected websites that I have worked on personally, for SEO. I have seen sites get completely de-indexed and then later re-indexed in addition to just receiving penalties due to unnatural linking. I have been a part of content marketing, spinning content, as well as link buying. I have seen it all…black hat …. white hat…. been there done that. But the most recent issue that surfaced with regard to Dun&Bradstreet’s ignorance has literally “taken the cake”. These fortune 500 companies hiding behind the “we didn’t know what our SEO Agency was doing” is really getting old, get with the program folks!!!!
The reality is link buying has been a part of the overall SEO strategy forever. There are link brokers who have been around for YEARS who make no qualms about link buying, or building link pyramids, link wheels etc. and continue to “be in business” with no issue. Then there are those who are publicly made an “example of” for practicing bad tactics, like iAcquire. This issue is near and dear to me because I have worked with this company, and they were specifically hired to ‘build links’ – what does that mean? It means creating relationships with relevant sites and making “deals” with these sites to ensure a link will be placed the way “we,” as a company want it. Who ultimately drives that need? At the end of the day, the company who hired them, of course!!! They provide the keywords and tell the agency this is what we need to do, right???!!! What did you think they were going to do? Did you think that webmaster's would give away links out of the kindness of their hearts?? C'mon there has to be an incentive, that is the reality.
It is so disappointing to see the SEO community turn their noses up and totally act as a subset of hypocrites when one of their own gets called out for doing what EVERYONE else is attempting to do and for that I am disgusted, its just not right. For goodness sake, look at what GOOGLE did!!!
Listen folks, start taking responsibility for the vendors you hire and the work they do. As a business understand what it takes, and to those who want to point the finger, make it a point to “roll your sleeves up” like you expect your middle management team to do, and stop making excuses. Furthermore, as an SEO professional, accept the fact that SO many people are doing exactly what they did, deal with it and then get over it!
I have said my peace, I stand by it and feel much better that I got it off my chest! Onward!