Ok, all this issue about paid links, paid posts, PageRank penalties, SERPs demotion and the twisting of moral compass in advertising is giving me nose bleed. And yes, a lot of blog networks that have heavily relied on the TLA factor for their revenue model are in for a huge business dilemma. But what does that got to do with buying a PageRank 7 link from Google.com for $5 a day?
Well, a lot of SEO people and bloggers have pointed out this page — Mini Customer Success Stories. How do you get listed on that PR7 page? Well, just get yourself a Google Appliance, and submit your testimonial and link on that page.
The Google Mini Search Appliance delivers Google search for your public website or internal search, including the ability to control how frequently your content is indexed and include both public and private content in search results. It starts at $1,995 for search across 50,000 documents.
The service costs a mere $1,995 a year or about $5 a day. Actually, the Google Custom Search Business Edition only costs $100 for 5,000 documents. That’s even cheaper. So anybody who wants a non-nofollowed PR7 link straight from Google just needs to show up with the cash and submit their links to be listed.
Of course, Google is not really into the paid links business (except for the AdWords/AdSense tandem) and the one mentioned above is an indirect benefit but hey, you still get that raw link juice from them right. But wait, aren’t marketplaces like TLA and ReviewMe also advertise that those links are for traffic and not to pass PageRank? And no, I don’t think Google should put a PageRank penalty on itself for those paid raw links.
Those who’ve expressed that all these is unfair and us smalltime publishers (bloggers creating quality content and making a small living on non-AdSense ads) are suffering from it will need to realize that like any other company Google is running a business. Services like TLA, TLB, PPP are somewhat directly competing with AdWords and the right way to legitimize Google’s foothold is to go back to the basics — desensitizing the SERPs. And yes, it’s far easier for them to do this hand-job than actually go and kill off comment spammers, webspam, scrapers and content thieves. Those aren’t as serious a threat (to their business) as link buying/selling.
This post was inspired by:
Aaron Wall: How To Buy A #1 Organic Search Ranking On Google.
Douglas Karr: What if Bloggers went on Strike?
Robert Clough: Composing the Perfect Letter of Surrender
Philipp Lenssen: Google Owns an SEO Company
And oh, Google is just getting started. Wait ’til it gets its hands on memes, link exchanges, seo contests, writing projects, link campaigns and anything that involves people making use of links for cash, prizes, gaining PageRank, and manipulating search engine results.
Yup, the operative word here is manipulation. And Google has just been granted that patent.
Disclosure: Ok, I admit. This post was partly influenced by the fact that starting next month, I would lose over $1,000 a month from link ads.