Earlier this week, we posted an article about an investigation from blogger Josh Davis, which exposed marketing firm iAcquire for allegedly purchasing backlinks for clients. Davis' report caught the attention of Google's head of webspam, Matt Cutts:
@JoshD nice write-up. Most people don't go the extra mile to call up and try to get comments from the other side.
Now, it turns out that iAcquire has been de-indexed from Google (along with other parties involved in the scandal, according to Search Engine Land's Barry Schwartz). Schwartz even got iAcquire's Director of Inbound Marketing to mention this on Twitter:
@rustybrick sure was. There's no network for them to kill so that's them throwing their hissy fit.
On the topic of whether or not its better for companies to run their own SEO in-house, Davis told WebProNews, “It is hard to say. From small businesses all the way up to large corporations there are so many hours in the day. SEO seems to be one area where considerable oversight is needed as various black and grey hat techniques still seem to be part of some SEO companies’ toolboxes.”
As far as trust a firm not to engage in paid linking on your behalf, Davis says, “Backlink monitoring is certainly a key. There are a number of enterprise grade resources that provide daily updates on links. In my case I was just using a crude, free backlink service, but this space is filled with vendors who offer high quality monitoring. Having a third party do an audit of links might also be needed when a large company’s reputation is at stake.”