• http://www.canuckseo.com Jim Rudnick

    Um…great piece, here Vanessa….didn’t know about Conductor, eh…but a good think I think. Alan over at Searchmarketingwisdom.com has an allied piece on just this issue too…..so thanks to you both for this!



  • http://www.michael-martinez.com/ Michael Martinez

    Of course, Google could end all this nastiness by simply removing links from its algorithm. They were never a good quality signal to begin with and supposedly (according to Segery) they now account for only 1% or less of the algorithm anyway.

  • http://www.michael-martinez.com/ Michael Martinez

    Segery = Sergey. Sorry about that, Chief.

    And before someone crops up and says, [WHINEY VOICE] “But links WERE a great quality indicator until Google monetized them!”[/WHINEY VOICE} — no, links were corrupted long before Google got into the game.

    The original concept of PageRank was always a stupid idea.

  • http://www.apogeeresults.com Joshua Butler

    Vanessa, thank you for the update. It seems Google is interested in keeping all online advertising revenue to itself (I’m sure the investors approve).

    Although quality content is what should be ranking, companies will continue to look for ‘shortcuts’. Well, here is what we get with shortcuts; sudden drops in website visibility through search.

    What do you think the next shortcut is to be identified as spam?

  • http://DirectMatchMedia.com Ben Cook

    I’m sorry, but it’s disgusting to me that Conductor thinks it can bow out of the paid links arena and keep their reputation intact.

    The latest comments by Matt Cutts calling them out were NOT the first. They’d been called out multiple times, they KNEW their network was on Google’s radar, and yet the continued to sell links to their clients that they should have known were at best worthless, at worst, harmful to their clients rankings.

    Maybe it’s me but I wouldn’t want to do business with a company that engaged in that kind of activity in the past, no matter how far they try to distance themselves from it.

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com Nick Stamoulis

    All I can say is its about time!

    It is good that larger companies are getting nailed for practicing black hat SEO link building techniques. I think we are all seeing the SEO industry growing right before our eyes. As a white hat SEO practitioner I have been against paid linking strategies for some time, it is nice to see validity (finally) in the mass news media to prove why staying white hat is THE best long term strategy…regardless of how large your organization is.

  • http://www.prestoreviews.com luxurydealer

    What about paying for links on Yahoo Directory and BOTW.org? How is this different? No one believes when they spend money here that this is advertising in a directory…or if it is disguised as such it’s ok? Where is the line?


  • http://www.hoegerman.com David Hoegerman

    Whats interesting is that while Google has manually penalized Overstock, they have done nothing about all the other sites participating in this link scheme. If you look at those discount .edu links, you’ll see a site http://www.achooallergy.com right there on the same page as the links to Overstock. Even though this has been reported to google, a search for Allergy Masks still show them in the top 3 positions!

    Agree totally with luxurydealer.

  • markmurphy11

    My company http://www.oysterdiving.com seems to have been massively penalised and I don’t know why. We have never used any link farms and have lots of legitimate links from other related companies around the world. If anyone could let me know why it would be truly appreciated!

  • http://www.monicawright.com Monica Wright

    Hi there,
    Without getting too involved here about what is going on with your site, I suggest posting your inquiry to our Linked In group – we have a very active membership that offers help quite a bit. http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=53266