You know how they say you should never hit your children unless they are in harm’s way? It’s like if you see your child getting ready to put his hand on top of the hot stove burner, you quickly slap his hand away to keep the accident from happening. Well, consider your hand slapped! Don’t be like poor “Bob” and buy thousands of backlinks for your website, because IT WILL HURT YOU IN THE LONG RUN!!!
I see ad after ad offering cheap backlinks. I think on the site FIVERR they are advertising 5000 backlinks for $5 – something like that. It sounds like a real bargain and you are probably thinking, “What do I have to lose, it’s only 5 bucks for 5000 links?” A few years ago you’d probably be right, but today Google can penalize you for poor backlinks. That’s right, you can actually be penalized if your links are poor quality, come from banned sites, or if you simply have too many links show up in a short period of time.
A few months ago I developed a great site for a client of mine who we will call Bob (not his real name). Bob’s really into researching the latest trends and typically markets his own sites. Bob’s also been burned in the past for wanting something that sounded too good to be true. Several years ago Bob fell for a scam that cost him thousands of dollars. He was promised millions of customers driven to his site for paying for a few keywords through a service that turned out to be bogus. He paid the money with visions of thousands of clients knocking his door down, and he wound up losing about $3k and getting nothing in return. FYI, Bob didn’t consult his web developer before signing up for this scam.
So, you’d think Bob would have learned his lesson and that he’d ask his developer (that would be me if you were having trouble following) before doing anything crazy, like buying 5000 backlinks for a brand new, well developed site. It would make sense, right?
Well, Bob called me up a few months ago and told me that there was someone selling 5000 backlinks for $5. I immediately said, “Don’t do it. It’s not worth it. You’re site is going to be penalized. Your site’s new – let’s not screw it up right out of the gate.” Silence. “Bob – you still there?” More silence and then, “I already purchased it. Besides, it was only $5.” Ugh.
The damage had been done. My hands were tied and Bob does own the site so he is free to do what he wants. The interesting part of this story is that he had two sites developed for two different markets and launched both within a month of each other. The site with the 5000 backlinks doesn’t rank and the one he left alone is beginning to see some results. Coincidence? I don’t think so.
To conclude, please don’t purchase backlinks. Make sure that you grow your site’s links organically:
- get involved with other sites like yours by commenting and building personal relationships with others in your field
- use social media to connect with potential clients
- create a great site that offers something for others to sink their teeth into.
Learn from Bob’s mistakes and don’t get burned!