The recent penguin update by Google has highlighted the importance of good quality link building. With close scrutiny of other websites our researchers have seen many that used bulk low quality inbound links starting to drop out of their top positions.
In the cases of those that dropped it was noted that they had many trash inbound links. A lot of these were exact keyword links from multiple blog comments. It was quite obvious these were placed deliberately as many of the blogs were completely irrelevant to the recipient websites topic. Some were even foreign blogs with no relation at all to the link.
These findings highlight that the age of cheap bulk links is coming to an end. If you think your website is very well optimised and it suddenly dropped far away from its top position then you really should take a look at your inbound links. This is especially important if you took on the services of a link builder.
A good link building strategy is still an important part of SEO but it now requires more care and thought. Free directory links have lost a lot of their influence but this tends to be those that allow any link text to be used when creating a website entry. Consider linking from the older more trusted directories. Some of these may charge now but thats only because they have a human edit the entries.
Blogs still play a role but be cautious not to overuse them in such a way that Google’s algorithm sees the links as being solely manufactured.
Article writing is still a good thing to do but again be wary that its not just some scraped information stuffed full of links.
As far as inbound links go its always been better to have less links of a good quality rather than thousands of cheap ones.
There is no telling how far future algorithms will go in detecting link quality but as always with SEO make sure you try and produce a high quality, useful website that gets regularly updated. Onsite optimisation is still a crucial element to successful online marketing.