Ever since the last update, I’ve been reading about how google hates profile backlinks. Webmasters talk about how effective profile backlinks were prior to the Panda update where there sites were flying around the top of the serps and then, after the update, all their sites plunged down.
One blogger said that after he was hit by the update, apparently because of his forum profile links, he’s starting to take steps to diversify his traffic sources so that he wouldn’t have to ever rely again on google for his business. He said the update caused him sleepless nights as his income plummeted down to pitiful levels.
Another one declared that he’s dropping his subscriptions from profile links sellers because he’s turning his sights on blog commenting and articles submission this time. But then how do we know that the big G is keen on blog comment backlinks just as it is keen on profile backlinks?
Then there are those who vow that they’re sure what Google is up to this time. “Don’t fear about profile links’ effects on your websites. The Google Panda update was a content update, not a backlink update.” Probably these guys think that all those testimonies were all made up. If it is indeed an update that did not touch on backlinks, is he implying then that most, if not all, of those websites were of thin content and not relevant to their subject matter? Hmmm…could be.
Some folks even go as far as to advise everyone to stay away now from profile backlinking because Google would give you a minus point everytime it sees a profile backlink pointing to your site. So, they are now spending some considerable resources hiring VAs to remove all their profiles.
I think Google wouldn’t necessarily post a negative point for your site because of profile links because if that were the case, wouldn’t this mean that anyone now has the power to bring down a competitor’s site from the serps simply by creating a ton of forum profile links pointing to their site?
Whatever your conclusion might be, it’s clear, if all those feedback are to be believed, that forum profile linking is no longer as effective as it was before. The former glory of the forum profile backlinks was based on the fact that most forums have high PR and thus are considered authority sites and they are crawled often because of the constant changes in their content and thus even the useless profile pages are crawled too and indexed quickly. Forum profile backlinks are also very easy to create and automate.
I personally can attest that after the Panda update, one of the few sites I own which previously was number one (for one of its targetted keywords) slipped down to the bottom of the serp. While Market Samurai reports that the site has more than 6,000 backlinks (90% of which are forum profiles), the first top six sites now only had 675 backlinks, 306 backlinks, 698 backlinks, 251 backlinks, 0 backlinks, and 76 backlinks, respectively. The PRs are either 5, 4, or 3. Mine’s only 2.
Google must have realized that a forum profile page has nothing to contribute content-wise, as all it contains are someone’s vital statistics and their site links. Thus it probably classified these as spam.
Someone at the warriorforum thought up of a possible run around on this issue. And that is to add content to your Bio or About Me section in your forum profiles, not just your links. Then again, this is one man’s idea. After reading so much feedback and articles about the Panda update, I am beginning to think that no one really knows. It’s all conjecture out there. That’s why I’m holding on to my money and not buy those WSOs that promise to conquer the Panda update this early. Google surely wouldn’t go about revealing the changes they make to their algorithm because they know it will just be gamed again by every serp-hungry wolf worldwide. Besides, Google promised to be making more adjustments to the update. Who knows what those little adjustments would do to the serps?
Me? I think I’ll just go for better content. Although I still see top pages with only 400 to 500 words in it, I think it still is better to go for 1000 words, preferrably more, to make a page’s content that also makes sense.
What do you think?