What Actually Constitutes NATURAL link building?
 by Casey Markee

What Actually Constitutes NATURAL link building?

  • With Google recently updating their Webmaster Guidelines to discourage link building methods like press releases, advertorials, guest blogging and anything else that uses anchor text rich linking text, what does that leave us to use for our clients? What constitutes natural link building, and where should we be concentrating our efforts?

Answer: Unfortunately, Google has continued their quest to eliminate ANY link technique that they perceive has even a hint of commercial connotations or would appear to exist solely for algorithmic benefit. As you noted the most recent example of this was seen in late July when Google quietly updated their Link Scheme Definitions to add press release links, anchor text-rich advertorials, and excessive guest posting as new examples of unnatural links that may trigger a manual action against sites.

Bottom line: site owners live and die at the mercy of Google's link scheme guidelines and they've clearly stated that if you were actively using the above in the past on your site or your client sites, now's the time to stop...or else.

Link Builder is Like a Plastic Surgeon

So where does that leave us? What's left for link building? If you recall our April article entitled 8 Link Building Best Practices in a Post-Penguin World, we covered several fantastic natural strategies that site owners can still use effectively to generate quality, niche-related links into their sites, all with little risk of triggering a manual action by Google.

There are some great strategies listed and this recent update by Google doesn't diminish those strategies at all. On the contrary, t...