Pay Per Post Reviews Acceptable By Some Search Engines

Search Engines Say OK to Pay-per-Post Services from Rand Fishkin at SEOmoz has him reporting from SES Chicago that search engines seemed largely unconcerned over pay-per-post programs, in terms of them being cover for paid links.

Specifically, Tim Converse from Yahoo starts off saying that “there would be no discount of link value for paid blog material.” The rest of the search engines, including Google, represented by Adam Lasnik nodded their heads, according to Rand. Now, this was not just shocking to Rand, I was shocked by the response after Rand told me this on Thursday.

Matt Cutts of Google tries to clear things up by commenting at SEOMoz saying;

Just to chime in and expand on Adam’s comment: Google wants to do a good job of detecting paid links. Paid links that affect search engines (whether paid text links or a paid review) can cause a site to lose trust in Google.

Now that is more like a Google response. So what to do as an SEO now? Tough one, no?

Related Topics: Channel: SEO | Link Building: Paid Links | SEO: Spamming


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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  • Mikkel deMib Svendsen

    > Tough one, no?

    No, I don’t think so. It’s the same as always – the engines say one thing, we do another :)

  • Matt Cutts

    The specific guideline for doing paid reviews or paid links is to make sure that your links don’t affect search engines. You can do that via a nofollow attribute on your links, or an internal redirect which goes through a page which is robot.txt’ed out, or several other methods.

  • AussieWebmaster

    I think a lot of the witch hunt for paid listings can be forgotten. Why not just apply the relevancy parameter to this. Do people who go out and get links from other sites by whatever means have differences?
    I do think the people giving the links have a little responsibility but at the end of the day when a site has a link to their brother’s site about sports news and they are a site not related to that you guys generally just decrease the impact of the link. But to start a witch hunt through the web is not very realistic and the scope pushes you to dramatically decrease your page build or profits since the human eyes you would need to pay would be quite substantial.
    Or you have the situation like ODP or what is now surfacing at Digg and the other social networks.

  • JLH

    I still say to try to get targetted traffic, the rest will work itself out. If I can get a bunch of traffic from an on-topic blog by throwing a few dollars their way, then it’s a good link. How the search engines treat the link, well, I’ll leave that up to them. Seems to me they’ve got enough on their plate than to worry about paid blog posts.

  • feedthebot

    Matt, can you give me the URL of the help page or Google documentation that provides this guidance?

  • geeurbie

    Paid advertising is every where so why should blogging be any different. People get paid to do mystery shopping so why not mystery blogging. This seems like a lot to do about nothing. I just placed PPA buttons on my blog as a way to monetize the blog.
    I absolutely will not use adsense. I most likely will never see any paid blogging gigs as the blog has no PR, even though it is the #1 Google ranked house cleaning tips blog three times over.

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