What is Google’s thinking about links from article marketing, widgets, etc?
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What is Google’s thinking about links from article marketing, widgets, etc?

>>Matt Cutts: Matt from Mountain View asks,
“What is Google’s current thinking about getting links from article marketing, widgets, footers,
themes, etcetera?” Yeah, I’m really glad to talk about our current thinking which is about
the same as our past thinking but let’s be a little more explicit about it. Whenever
you get a link from just a word press footer or just a random footer or, you know, when
someone installs a widget or they install some theme on their content management system,
it’s often the case that they’re not editorially choosing to link with that anchor text. So,
you sometimes see a lot of links all with the exact same anchor text because, you know,
that’s what the widget happened to have embedded in it or something like that. And even if
it’s not the exact same anchor text it’s like a, you know, it’s relatively inorganic in
the sense that the person who made the widget is deciding what the anchor text should be
rather than the person who’s actually doing the link by including the widget. And it’s
the same sort of thing with article marketing, if you write a relatively low quality article,
you know, and just a few hundred words and then at the bottom is two or three links of,
you know, specifically high keyword density anchor text, then the sort of guy who just
sort of wants some content and doesn’t really care about the quality might grab that article
from an article bank or something and, um, he’s not really editorially choosing to give
that anchor text. So, as opposed to something that’s really compelling, when you really
like something, when you’re linking to it organically, you know, that’s the sort of
links that we really want to count more. So, it’s always been the case that these sorts
of links that are almost like boiler plate, it’s like not really a person’s real choice
to really endorse what that particular link, or that particular anchor text, those are
links that typically we would not want to count as much. So, either our algorithms or
we do have manual ways of saying, “Okay, at a very granular level, you know, this is the
sort of link that we don’t want to trust.” So, um, there are some people who say, “Okay,
I just want links. I’m just gonna take short cuts. I’m lazy, I wanna do the bare minimum
I can to get the links that I want to get” and they’ll fall back on some ways where,
you know, I’ve mentioned the example before, but if you’re a K through 12 school teacher
in Pennsylvania and you’re trying to get a web counter and you don’t realize that it
has mesothelioma hidden in the text of the web counter, that’s not a link that we necessarily
wanna trust at all let alone give that much weight to. So the sorts of links where people
are really choosing to editorially link to you, and not just because they’re paid but
because they think your site is good, those are the links that we’re more likely to wanna
count more.


  • D J

    common Matt – answer his question!! He asked about the "juice" that Google gave links in the footer and instead you went on a tirade about "good vs bad links." Yea, we get it! Google doesn't like bad/spammy/manipulative/deceptive links – anywhere! Are you implying that the footer is the most common place? And that Google discounts them? Or, that Google discounts links in ANY widget?

  • Bill Gelwick

    Glad I'm not the only one who caught that. Matt from Mountain View? Don't worry, I talk to myself regularly too. I often need expert advice.

  • Spiry ɃTC

    Hey Matt , take your team and take 20 rounds of google headquaters i think you need some fresh air . It's to much communist thinking here . Ok let's ban everything / delete / disconsider . Let's screw with a man work real good . Go to hell ! .

  • Phil Hudson

    I think this is good to know. I have wondered how Article marketing, or doing Web 2.0 for a personal site could hurt you potentially. It looks like it is more of a devaluation and not so much a penalty. That helps a lot!

  • Dewaldt Huysamen

    HI Matt, I really wish you could just answer me on this; "Is it bad to have powered by footer credit links on our clients websites with our brand name as anchor text?"

  • MrTVTL905

    If you even have to ask, you're not really a web professional. Good developers/designers don't need to put that trash on the bottom of their clients' sites.

  • Dewaldt Huysamen

    Faire enough but if it is company policy? I have always advised against it and now we are doing something about it but I want to know as Google themselves do footer links like woza online south africa a Google initiative that places their powered by Google and Woza Online in the bottom that links to the main site?

  • John Hoff

    Hi Matt, thank you for taking the time like you do to post these, however I'm just being honest, you're kind of sounding like a politician in that you're trying not to name names and not really giving a clear answer. From the title I was looking for what Google thinks about article marketing, not blogrolls and footer links. For example, what if I publish a non-spun high quality article to Ezinearticles?

  • Marc

    In regards to article marketing, are there those which you would consider high quality or does a link from an article marketing site (i.e squidoo) automatically trigger a low quality signal?

  • MrTVTL905

    Since no one else has asked this, I will…what was the point of even having people post questions in the Moderator forum if you were just going to answer yours, anyway? I really don't understand this.

  • m0r1arty

    Each time I see a Matt video I believe in the potential of the future more.

    -1 for footers pointing to designers!! That's only a good thing in my mind!

    Plus Matt, love the fact it was your own question you answered (Or inferred to!)

  • Peter Sundstrom

    There's a big difference between selling links on sidebars/footers and having a link to the software that powers the site.

    Not really sure Google distinguishes between the two types though.

  • stoic

    make sure your links are relevant to your niche and build links pretending not to be a marketer and make them look natural, such as not always using anchor links, but just the url itself

  • Emma Coakes

    Lots of advice along the lines of 'look natural' which implies a front to me. 'Quick, here comes the teacher, look natural'. Far better to 'be' natural; a constant state of SEO leading from well written useful content.

  • noisycity

    Just copy and paste on Google the question "What is Google's current thinking about getting links from article marketing, widgets, footers, themes, etc.?".
    You'll have the answer.

  • Page One Power

    If editorial choice is the critical element then I'd say page one power is the only link building firm you can go with. Everything we publish and every link we get is earned and editorially given. Thanks Matt.

  • beju1985

    Heya, Anyone heard about the Tube Cash Exposure? (do a Google Search) Ive read several excellent stuff about it and my sister made a large amount of cash with it!

  • Darius Martin

    "some people who say, OK I just want links, I'm just gonna take shortcuts, I'm lazy, I wanna do the bare minimum to get the links that I want to get"
    So I guess a designer who works for two weeks on a beautiful theme, that he than gives for free, adding real value to the web, is just lazy.

  • John Geyer

    I just finished recording a video series-guides about wordpress and I uploaded one of those videos on my channel today. You can watch a sample video from this training course…. go here: –> /watch?v=8PUiid82f64 <=== or visit my channel to watch it

  • Kevin Smothers

    This is such a catch 22 situation. On the forefront it's easy to say "footer links are crap", "widget links are bad" and "article marketing links are bad" and I can see where ur coming from, but then there are the people launching a new product or service that isn't really out there at the moment and they try to spread their info to the masses through these channels in the hopes of getting the word out and then they get penalized because they are using practices that "black hatters" are using

  • Andrew

    It's funny how he mentions that they don't like to count links where the site is not editorially choosing the anchor text, when in the webmaster guidelines it specifically tells you to not use "click here", or your site link, and to choose keywords that are related to your site as the anchor text. Is it just me or does Google constantly contradict themselves? If that's not the case, then they should really updated their webmaster guidelines.

  • Jeff Session

    I get a lot of people sharing my pages on facebook and even a little on google+ and twitter. However, linking in the traditional sense seems to be much less common.

  • Trevor Green

    So what is the difference between a client posting your link on facebook because they like your work, and a client giving you props in their site footer? Web Design is referral driven. Is there no place on a clients site for referral that is given weight? Is this basically saying that they have no ability to editorially approve you? Maybe a full blog post extolling your virtues? Or do you have to get five stars on yelp, or a bunch of google +1's. Seems a bit arbitrary to me.

  • Hari Santoso

    If you desire to earn extra cash fast, you should look up on google Smarter Money Maker. They can guide you and help you get the money you deserve.

  • Spook SEO

    Simply put… Make sure that your links are anchored on content that gives value and is of high quality. I think Google's take on this is spot on!

  • circa blonk

    Just use backlink generators. Everyone does, the problem is, those who don't, and play by the rules, are drowned out by everyone that doesn't. I can easily spam 1 million backlinks for free. However, the average Joe, will write 1 year's worth of blog posts, and then ask some authority blog to link to him, in which they will generally charge $500-$2,000 for that 1 link. Odds are 1 million to one. Don't bother with "organic backlinks" they're fantasy anyway. Who the fuck just links to someone?

  • circa blonk

    Well I get my clients fast, noticeable results. No one has the time or money to invest into a blog that's not turning a profit. I've seen bloggers post for 5 years without making a dime, and quite frankly, that sucks. Google's customers are people who use their search engine. Bloggers are supplying their product, so why shouldn't they get paid accordingly? Even if you have quality content, there's still no guarantee you will be seen on Google. You have to do what you have to do.

  • Dustin Reynolds

    Exactly, I find this video very helpful thank you! Additionally I would like to say that I am a video marketer and I utilize youtube to get traffic. Wondering how I achieve this? In my channel you can find a video about my course where I teach all that stuff. Go to my youtube channel to check it out. Good luck!

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