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Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO and SERP’s?

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It may be time to rethink your SEO backlinking strategy, your content length and how you apply keyword phrases to your content because you could be killing your site in the search results.

It is still true to say that good quality backlinks are good for your site but it is really how you earn them that matters and Google is getting incredibly good at finding those who have a building backlinks strategy rather than earning backlinks.

Your content length is also incredibly important.

Are you scraping by with 600-700 word posts or are you writing something with a purpose something to answer the search user intent, something that Google can trust and show to its users?


You need to understand that SEO is changing.

SEO is changing, it is actually moving away from being a technical process and more about optimizing for a better user experience for members.

It really is all about how your visitors view your site that is now starting to impact rankings.

Yes, there are still strong SEO  fundamentals that you need to apply to have an SEO-friendly site, like keyword phrase in your title and URL. The use of htags for headlines and sub-headlines and internal and external linking. And your overall design and readability needs to be good to keep visitors on your pages.

It may be time to rethink your SEO backlinking strategy, your content length and how you apply keyword phrases to your content because you could be killing your site in the search results. Click To Tweet

But when it comes to keyword phrases and building backlinks you need to take care because you can hurt and even damage your SEO and that impacts negatively on how Google sees your site.

Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO

Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO?

Backlinking, it is still very important but is becoming less so.

I predict that in 5 years backlinking will be a very low ranking factor because of RankBrain and all the other SEO advancements.

So the question is… Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO? Because it could be

If you are going out and actively looking for to build backlinks if you are looking to buy backlinks then stop because your site is going to fall off a cliff because building backlinks is frowned upon by Google.

As your site gets some traction and some good search results you find that your contact form page starts to become popular.

“Hi admin how are you?, I found your site via Google and was wondering if you would be interested in a collaboration. I have just written a great article that is 1005 unique that fits your niche perfectly. Can I send it over for you to publish?

to which I reply,

“ok have you read our posting guidelines?”

and I’m then told that they have.

I then receive a 600-word article that links into a shop or a drug company or just about anything non-related.

Is it a good idea to publish this content?

No of course not. Not even if it is related to the content that I publish on my site.

Because if you accept guest posts you need to make sure that what you accept adds value and is as good if not better than your own content.

Guest blogging for backlinks is link building and link building is bad for SEO and if you are doing this? Then your backlinking strategy is killing your SEO or at least it is going to when you get found.

There is nothing authentic and organic about or natural about building backlinks.

The only time that backlinks are authentic, organic, and natural is when someone reads your post and likes it enough to then use it as a resource or mention it in some way in one of their articles.

That is an example of earning backlinks as a reward for just producing great content and a good site UX


I also get requests to buy backlinks.

Recently someone contacted me and listed 7 of my older blogs and gave me 2 different links, again completely unrelated target links to my site’s niche, and asked me to add them to the posts he had listed and then offered me $70 for the 7 links.

That’s like me selling my site for $70 because to take this offer would result in a Google penalty and plunge my site into darkness.


Think about it for a second

The 7 links for $70 offer makes no sense for me or for the person offering the deal.

  1. It will kill my site
  2. What good are backlinks from a penalized site to you?

It just makes no sense to for either party.


Is your keyword strategy killing your SEO?

If you are a WordPress blogger then you are more than likely using an SEO plugin to help you optimize for SEO.

And you are probably using Yoast SEO  or the All In One SEO plugin.

Well, let’s assume you’re using Yoast SEO to optimize a post.

You are following the prompts and turning the buttons from red to green one by one and reading the advisory notes as you go along.

The post you are writing is, let’s say, 1000 words, well above the 300 or so that Yoast needs to go green so that is good.

Your keyword phrase… you now have to use the phrase within your post the required number of times to turn the button green.

The problem being is that to turn Yoast green you are going to need to add your phrase around 7x for a 1000 word post and the longer you write the more you need to add that phrase to stay green.


Can you see the problem?

SEO is no longer about exact match keywords and stuffing those keywords into an article to optimize. It is just about writing good quality long-form content adding your keyword phrase where appropriate and then using related keyword phrases so that the text is relevant to your main phrase.

This is the premise of optimizing for multiple keywords.

The mistake that many bloggers make with SEO and keyword research is to write shorter-length posts.

You can’t optimize successfully for multiple keywords within 600 words with 1500 to 2000 you can.

And although you can’t turn your plugin green for a phrase on a long-form post you can certainly tell Google what your article is about because they are left in no doubt because all secondary keywords are closely related and help cover the search user intent.

You create a much better-balanced article that is not repetitive and offer a much better user experience.


Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO

Finishing Up

It takes a long time to build up your reputation and authority and only one or two bad decisions to kill it.

And we now know just how important your reputation and authority are with the E-A-T, Medic algorithm update that deals with Your Money Or Your Life” websites.

With this update, you are required to prove your reputation and authority as a ranking factor.

If Google doesn’t think you’re qualified to talk on a subject then your not going to rank highly.

Don’t kill your reputation by taking cheap deals and following outdated SEO practices.

Building backlinks in the ways outlined above is a very bad practice.

You can even now get penalized for building backlinks if you are guest blogging.

If you are producing thin content and then linking to your own site multiple times then again that’s gonna turn the lights off on your site.

The same applies if you are accepting this type of content.

Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO - Finishing Up

So things to do

Yoast SEO is a great plugin but it does really only deal with old-school SEO.

Exact match keyword optimization is the perfect example.

Yoast also advises a recommended minimum length of 300 words for a blog. It really doesn’t take much to turn that button green.

My point is that you should use Yoast as a guide and only a guide. If you get to 300 words and you stop cause you are green then your about 1500 words short of writing the type of content that Google likes.

If you are stuffing those exact match keywords in then you’re missing the opportunity to rank for multiple keywords and you are limiting your chances to be seen.

Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO

Here is what you do instead

  • Read my SEO Guide for 2021, and my Mobile SEO Guide 2021. They are both going to outline the basics of SEO above and beyond what you need
  • Set a good keyword phrase. Use it where it is right to use it and then rather than forcing it to other places use a related phrase that basically underpins what your article is about.
  • Write good long-form content 1500 – 2000 words in length. This is the length of content that Google loves and it just gives you more opportunity to optimize for multiple keywords.
  • Stop building backlinks because your current backlinking strategy is killing your SEO. Instead, focus on just creating great content that provides a great user experience. Build your sites dwell time and time on page and earn your backlinks because when you earn backlinks that are natural they can really count in your favor. Remember our friends over at Google look for natural backlink profiles. Having more dofollow links than nofollow is a sure sign that your up to something because by nature No follow links are easier to attain and so you should have more of them. Anything unnatural will eventually be fagged and seen as gaming the system and when that happens you know what is coming.

Ditch all the backlink tools the backlink checkers, the expensive keyword research toys and concentrate on just creating great content and earn your backlinks.

Now that sounds like a much better backlinking strategy for 2018 and moving into 2019 and beyond.


That’s all for now

Do you have a backlinking strategy?

Have you had success with it?

Do you have experience with backlink tools and backlink checkers?

Do you think like me that having a backlink strategy is part of a much bigger dangerous SEO strategy?

Let me know in the comments section below.

Make sure that you subscribe to the comments section so that you are notified when I reply.

Regards Dexter


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Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO? Here is what to do instead!
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Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO? Here is what to do instead!
Is your backlinking strategy killing your SEO? It's time to ditch the backlinking tools and checkers and concentrate on your content and earn your links.
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Follow Dexter Roona:
Social Media Expert and Blogger. I love all elements of social media and my InfoBunny Blog is now really just about providing help for those looking to build their Social Media Authority.

26 Responses

  1. Anand Badola
    | Reply

    Hello Dexter.

    In 2018, and with the Google Rank Brain in the place, it becomes really essential to follow all the guidelines.
    I think apart from using SEO by Yoast, one should pay attention to keyword research. If you have good content people will eventually want to link with you.
    Outreach is also a great way to achieve such targets.
    Thank you for such an amazing article.

    • Dexter Roona

      I agree we have a RankBrain guide here on Infobunny. Have you read it?

  2. Bhawna Kaushik
    | Reply

    Hey Dexter..

    Great article. I have switched to squirrelly SEO plugin. Do you think it is a good one or should I continue using the Yoast’s plugin

    Looking forward to hearing from you soon

    • Dexter Roona

      Hi, I have no experience with the plugin that you mention.

    • Dexter Roona

      Hi, I have no experience with that plugin, I use Yoast, the free version.

  3. Seomakers
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,

    Incredible post. Never have thought in the way that you have presented. I totally agree that buying irrelevant backlink is the worst thing you could do, unless you are not that passionate about your blog. Also, as googles algorithm advances backlinking will gradually loose its charm and since google bots have started to understand semantics, it makes more sense to drive your blog towards creating more value based content rather than struggling with various old fashioned shortcuts that used to produce results ages ago but not so now. But, I also believe that backlink through relevant guestposting and content promotion can do well in most of the cases. Thanks for these insights.

  4. Nikola Roza
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,
    a very insightful article about link building and the common pitfalls that come with it.
    I agree with you that links are becoming less important, and that trend will continue as time passes.

    However, they are still important and the best backlinking strategy, in my opinion, has two components
    1. Create a killer, ultra comprehensive guide on whatever topic you’re exert in (and one that is popular and link worthy)

    2. Build genuine relationships with the influencers within your niche. Help them first by providing value (links, comments and shares); and later you can get them to promote your content for free.

    And it won’t feel forced because those influencers will think of you as a valuable member of their tribe who also happens to produces worthy content deserving of their help.

    And this activity, over time, will bring in those coveted natural links Google likes so much
    Thank for the guide Dexter,


    Nikola Roza

    • Dexter Roona

      I agree that is a great way to build backlinks.

  5. Hazel Jarrett
    | Reply

    Another great article Dexter. My only backlinking strategy is to create great content. I love answering the questions that my target audience have, and this is currently earning me a ton of natural links.

  6. Mark Edward
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,
    This is such a great article. But, I believe that backlinks through relevant guestposting and content promotion can do well in most of the cases.
    Anyways thanks for sharing this article 🙂

    • Dexter Roona

      Hi, Mark yes they can absolutely. The dangers are that you write a short post and then link back to your own site 2,3 times or even more. That is not a good practice. However, if you write a good 1500-2000 words and you add a link then that’s going to be cool because you created great content, you are not trying to cheat backlinks. If you add more than one link to your site then nofollow it. You just have to be sensible when guest blogging and backlinking.
      Thanks for stopping by
      Regards Dexter

  7. 10seos
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter,

    Truly agree with you. And even I would love to share your post with my team !

    • Dexter Roona

      Interested in a guest post here on Infobunny, send me a message on the contact form.

  8. Sathish Arumugam
    | Reply

    Different backlink strategies are needed in different situations to reach the goal. To score great backlink and rank high in Google we need to choose the best backlink strategies to depend on the website. But I would say these are one of the best and exact way of backlink strategy perfect for all business. All these methods are effective for backlinking and will work out well to start building better backlink for the website.

  9. chelsea
    | Reply

    I think its really nice article and helpful for me. I gathered some information on this post. I wish you all the best and it is grateful to me for learning. Please, sir, you will visit my website.

  10. jackjones
    | Reply

    I have learned many things, it’s a good blog post that helps me know how to optimize an image for a search engine. Thank you, sir, for your blog post.

  11. Saad
    | Reply

    Indeed, it’s true. I believe that SEO is extremely easy ONLY IF you understand the algorithms and backlinking strategy the right way. SEO never dies, we need to keep updating the strategy like wise.

  12. Prabhakar
    | Reply

    I agree with the most part and have been advising bloggers on similar lines. However, backlinks still are important, because the signal that they give to search engines cannot be replicated by other signals. Yes, new algos of search engines would look at natural backlinks that come from all around – and not artificial ones, with exact match anchors and from unrelated sites, PBN etc.

  13. Tauseef shah
    | Reply

    A website without any backlinks is a website without friends. Backlinks are navigation links from someone else’s site to yours. The more popular the site linking to you the better.

  14. Arjita Singh
    | Reply

    Great Job hats Off To U, Keep It The way U Doing.
    Arjita Singh recently posted…Happy Holi 2019 Whatsapp Status, SMS, ShayariMy Profile

  15. Bulk SMS in Pune
    | Reply

    Backlinks are incoming links to a website. They help the search engines analyze essential metrics like popularity, trust flow, and authority related to your site.

  16. Alisha Khan
    | Reply

    Usually, I never comment on blogs but your article is so convincing that I never stop myself to say something about it. You’re doing a great job Man, Keep it up.

  17. Anna
    | Reply

    Hi Dexter, it’s a great write-up. I know Link building is the most important part of SEO but bad or poor quality back links definitely kill your your website as Google is extremely advance to find out that. And day by day google improve their algorithm.
    Anna recently posted…How Snapchat Is Going To Change Your Business (Reasons And Tips Inside!)My Profile

  18. webshiny
    | Reply

    I don’t think backlinks are killing seo, but its also true too much of it can kill your website but awesome blog

  19. Delimp
    | Reply

    Hello Dexter, Your information good for a new users.
    How to decide a good backlink or bad backlink?
    How to create a good backlink for SEO and SERP’s?
    What is the process for the new website on ranking SERP?

  20. Sazzadul Islam
    | Reply

    Great article Dexter. Have you any details article about “how to create powerful backlink” ?

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