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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Why I won't link to your blog

Today I received the above comment, unsolicited, and after about two minutes' investigation I moved it into the Spam category. Here's a numbered list explaining why:
  1. Although my name is part of the blogspot domain I use, and promote in most places, the message addresses me as "Webmaster", which is possibly today's equivalent of "to whom it may concern". Actually, I have interchangeably experimented with the vanity URL provided to me via my alma mater, such as on Technorati and STC.org.
  2. The request is for cross-linking, which already devalues the proposition (as it's a "black hat" practice). If this person truly valued my blog, he would link to it without asking me to link to his.
  3. The request uses my domain, implying that it is a "keyword". I've blocked out the destination URL and the keyword he asked for (which, although partially reflecting his website address, was also far too generic to stand a chance at ranking well for it with his SEO approach).
  4. His blogroll still retains the blogspot.com domain, which indicates to me that he isn't serious about using this blog for a business. (As an aside, I'm slowly working on masking my domain with a vanity URL that I've had for years; I may eventually hide mine altogether). Seeing as he has a *.net domain, I have no idea why he wouldn't give his blog address as www.*withheldbusinessname*.net/blog.
  5. The name he signs off in the comment body does not match the handle he signed in as. Furthermore, clicking through to his Blogspot profile, it offers no substantial information except three blog links, two of which share the same title but are totally unrelated to the SEO topics realm. The third link is related to SEO, but isn't a link to the blog he wished to promote as per his comment.
  6. The only author mentioned and profiled on the blog does not match in name to either the signed name in the comment I received or the handle with which he signed into Blogspot.
  7. The blog itself has a glaringly obvious typographical error, "...Quality Bakc Links", as found on the most recent post heading. There is also a 5 month gap between the most recent and second most recent post, which, when considering the most authoritative corporate blogs have daily posts, is remarkably poor practice). And finally, its assertion that their services are "100% ethical" was already quite undermined by all the points I've addressed in this post.
So, to the commentor who "visited" and left the message today on behalf of this company: the above are the main reasons I will not be cross-linking with you. Thank you, however, for finding me. And let me know if you link to my blog anyway. :-)

About Mayo

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Professional: As "Senior Enterprise SEO Strategist" in IBM's Digital Marketing division, I provide consulting and training services for both internal and external clients. Formerly I was involved in Natural Language Processing, software localization, quality assurance and documentation authoring.
Personal: INTJ Nikkei Nisei ex-patriated Canadian who takes photographs and enjoys Baroque through late Classical music. The G+ page shares some of the "best of" photos.