Saturday, March 31, 2012

Build My Rank Shut Down: Link Networks at Risk in the SEO World

As many of you in the SEO community are already aware of, Build My Rank has been shut down and closed its doors for at least the foreseeable future. There was speculation surrounding the status of Build My Rank for weeks, and finally, they posted the following on their site that confirmed any suspicions that the network was dead. After Google de-indexed a large percentage of sites in their network, they ultimately had no choice. So what does this all mean for the SEO community? Other link networks? Sites that used Build My Rank?

Will it Get Worse?

This is quite a splash for the SEO world. A lot of SEOs and SEO agencies relied heavily on Build My Rank to drive their own or their clients' rankings in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Reports of sites taking big hits in the SERPs continue to surface, and there are many that say it will only get worse for those that used the network consistently and over a long period of time. Now people are wondering, what other link networks are at risk of shutting down? Has Google developed something in their algorithm to detect these link schemes?

Are Other Link Networks at Risk?

It is impossible to predict whether or not other link networks will fall. There are many out there, some much larger than others, and my guess is that the latter will be sweating it out for the next few months. The more sites a link network has, the greater the chances that Google has the ability to detect what is going on. Another question that has come up a lot pertains to the actual sites that were using Build My Rank. Are those sites going to receive site-wide penalties?

Will Sites That Used Build My Rank Receive a Penalty?

I don't actually believe that sites will get slapped on the wrist that hard. A more likely alternative is the following: if a page's visibility in the SERPs was the direct result of Build My Rank links, and nothing else, rankings for the keyphrases associated with that page will most likely drop. How much is the question. And then, on the other hand, there are an abundance of sites that acquired links using a number of different strategies. I believe those sites have less to worry about, unless the volume of links they were picking up from the Build My Rank network was extremely high. The more diverse a site's link profile is, the more natural it appears to a ranking algorithm.

What You Can Do If You Used Build My Rank

Really, there are two options. You can do nothing, in which case you sit on the sidelines and wait to see what type of impact using Build My Rank will have on your site. You can bet that if you have links posted through the network on sites that have yet to be de-indexed by Google, that may happen at any time. Or, you could work directly through Build My Rank and request that they remove all posts that your site appears on. If you are interested in pursuing this approach, you can visit their site here to get that done. While there is no time line as to how long that takes (they are inundated with requests, not surprisingly), this may be the more proactive stance to writing any wrongs in the eyes of Google. 

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