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Matt Cutts On How Google Handles Site-Wide Links Both Algorithmically And Manually

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If you’re interested in how Google treats site-wide backlinks, you’ll be interested in a new Webmaster Help video Google posted today. Matt Cutts takes on the following question:

Are site-wide backlinks considered good or bad by Google? Or do they just count as 1 link from the whole domain?

“On the algorithmic standpoint, typically I’ve said before, if we have like keywords – the first keyword counts some, the next keyword counts a little bit, but not as much, the third keyword not as much…so even if you do keyword stuffing – even if you throw a ton of keywords – at some point, it becomes asymptotically diminishing returns, and it doesn’t really help you anymore,” says Cutts. “You can imagine the same sort of thing, you know, if we see a link from a domain, we might count it once, but if we see 50 links from a domain, we still might choose to only count it once. So on an algorithmic side, we do a pretty good job of compressing those links together.”

“But then there’s also on the manual side,” he continues. “So, imagine that you have a Polish website, and then you see a site-wide link in English talking about, ‘Rent cheap apartments,’ you know. To a regular person, that looks pretty bad. So, certainly it does happen that you have site-wide links – maybe you have a blogroll or something like that, but if I were a manual webspam analyst, sort of doing an investigation, and we got a spam report, you’re an English site, and you’ve got a site-wide Polish link or something like that or vice versa, it looks commercial or it looks off-topic, low-quality or spammy, then that can affect the assessment on whether you want to trust the out-going links from that site.”

See more recent videos from Cutts here.

Matt Cutts On How Google Handles Site-Wide Links Both Algorithmically And Manually
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  • Kate

    I couldn’t care less what Matt Cutts has to say anymore.
    I played by Google’s rules for years, following every snippet of advice, watching Cutts’ videos, tweaking my site to keep in line with Google’s constantly-changing algorithms. Avoided all the black hat methods used by many other website owners. Etc. The end result? My website – which has been on the web three years longer than Google – has sunk further and further down Google’s search results. Searching using my main search term now returns my site on page 6 of search results, buried under dozens of sites that are inferior to mine on every way – in terms of content, design, usefulness and all the rest. All my pandering to Google’s whims has been to no avail whatsoever. So now, after 17 years online, I have abandoned Google completely. I have removed my Google search box, closed my Google analytics account and removed all Google-related snippets from my site. As far as I’m concerned Google was a great company in the beginning, but it has now become a Frankenstein monster, gobbling up the web. No more Google for me, thanks.

  • Bob

    Couldn’t agree more. Over time it has become quite apparent that Google is happy to see good, compliant websites disappear as collateral damage to their efforts to produce a set of search results that fits no particular criteria ofther than ‘lowest common denominator’ and highest advertising revenue stream for google. Following their guidelines at best means you might delay the axe a little, but sooner or later the results will reshuffle against you and the axe will drop.

  • http://Ellittiche.it Ste

    Kate, you are not alone. I constantly see bad website going up and old good website going down (sure, the going-up websites are also good adwords customers…).

  • http://www.todayilearnedfunfacts.com Phil

    Seek professional help Kate. Abandoning everything Google does not help your site or accomplish anything.

  • http://startmate.org Ankit

    My site is going to and fro at a very high pace.

  • http://alltoptens.com/ Sadek

    That’s why I avoid blogroll link in between my own sites and they ranks well.

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