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Checking the SERP of my site against many of my target keywords and looking at the #1 position for each of them.

In each case but one, it's a really ugly page with sub par information and then looking in Yahoo Site Explorer, it has tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of back links, the vast majority of which are clearly paid placements as their stuck on to hidden pages or jammed in a long list of links on a page by itself.

So Google always claims you shouldn't do this or you'll get penalized but it sure doesn't seem to be the case.

I have a hundred and some backlinks in yahoo site explorer, gained by doing what you're supposed to be doing (submitting articles, posting on good blogs and forums, getting on quality directories and gaining natural backlink spread due to good content) and yet I'm on the second or third page of SERP for all of these.

I have to fight the temptation every day to hire one of these services to go out and buy thousands of links for me, while I wait for Google to really change things to do what they say.

Any words of encouragement?

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Last Post by Brillig
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Search engine rankings are determined by both off-site and on-site ranking influences with on-site ranking factors clearly having the advantage. A web page can have a zillion links pointing to it but if the content within the web pages doesn't compare in value then the off-site influences are usually negligible. What I'm saying is that your competitor may be ranking better for more than just incoming link triggers.

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Yes, that's true and that's a good point.

But it still seems to point to the fact that google isn't really penalizing sites for spammy inbound links like they imply they will.

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Lots of stuff gets by Google (or they let go by). You must try to remember that the search engines have accumulated hetherto unknown wealth on the back of the lowly hyperlink and is not in much of a position to discredit links from other sources. It's a fragile world they live in because if all they said they could do about garbage links was true then likely they'd have to penalize themselves.

Edited by canadafred: clarification

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Lots of stuff gets by Google (or they let go by). You must try to remember that the search engines have accumulated hetherto unknown wealth on the back of the lowly hyperlink and is not in much of a position to discredit links from other sources. It's a fragile world they live in because if all they said they could do about garbage links was true then likely they'd have to penalize themselves.

:icon_biggrin:

So, should I give in and buy a boatload of inbound links? Or work harder on my onsite optimization?

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