In the ever-changing and ever-evolving world of SEO it is important to keep fully updated with the latest techniques and trends. We have listed 4 old school ‘off-page’ techniques that could earn you a Google penalty if you are still using them in 2019.
1. Using Paid Links Including ‘Rented’ For Link Building
Paid links are strictly forbidden by Google, but in the past purchasing links was a standard ‘black hat’ SEO technique and it proved to be very effective for those using it. Because of their simplicity and low cost they were extremely popular.
SEO’s regularly brought backlinks in bulk, they then stuffed the website with those links and simply waited for the SERPs to improve.
Rented links were just what the name suggests, sites brought links for a certain period of time. Once the time ran out, a site could rent those links once again or they would go back onto the market. SEO’s regularly used these and it was a fast way for them to make money, packing a client’s site with links, watch the SERPs improve, the links expire and the client re-buys the links.
2. Automatic Link Generation and Purchase
Automatic link generation was one of the most common techniques used by SEO’s in times gone by.
Just imagine: You don’t need to create content, optimise on-page factors, or make your site mobile- and user-friendly; your only goal is to automatically generate or buy links from third-party services. More links = higher SERPs.
This method, was cheap and efficient. But it goes without saying this is not a safe option for your website, but they are still in practice with some SEO’s. If Google finds any automatic links, then they will penalise a website very heavily, with pages dropping faster than a stone.
3. Link Spamming In Directories
In a time before Google, directories and listings such as Yahoo ruled the web, users would use these sites and scroll through thousands of ads and links to find what they were looking for.
While Google now dominates the internet and while directories are not as popular as they were, they can still be a viable source of high-quality backlinks. Even now registering your site on a directory on sites like Yelp can be very beneficial.
But like most SEO techniques, the directories were abused and misused by ‘black hat’ SEO’s looking for fast results.
Similar to social links, links from all directories and listings were useful for SEO. As a result, the Web was flooded with thousands of low-quality directories that nobody, except search crawlers, ever accessed.
Always remember if you are planning on using directories that it is better to have 10 directory links, rather than spamming links across thousands of low-quality.
Don’t let your site get caught out with these old school tricks.
4. Purchase of Forum Signature Links
This is quite an interesting way that people used to make money as well as give link juice. Essentially it involved creating accounts on various forums, posting thousands of posts and then selling that space as canvas for backlinks. However these days, they can significantly drop SERPs rankings, if a blog or forum they originate from is deemed low-trust. This practice is likely to get your site penalised rather than have any positive effect on its ranking.