That’s all you hear anymore: “I need more links,” “I need better links,” “All my links are worthless and Google penalized me,” “Where did my ranking go and why did my site disappear?”
These are my thoughts on the above questions we see here every day; others may disagree and they’re quite welcome to their opinions.
Let’s look at this a different way: Links are good, but that’s only one aspect of a successful website. It seems that many forget to address the fact that sites need all these other elements working as well:
Site structure and integrity; Internal navigation; Good, readable content on every page; and Proper insertion of keywords and keyword phrases in the tags, content and even in internal navigation.
If your website isn’t performing and some or all of the above-mentioned elements aren’t in good working order, just adding links can be fruitless. Google valued inbound links less via the Penguin (and possibly future) algorithm(s). It can be frustrating when these links don’t seem to help your site, while other websites are soaring.
You may already have all the links you need, however if you’ve purchase links through 98 percent of the link builders in the past. The ones that offered 250 links a week through blog commenting, forum links, etc., are pretty much worthless because Google considers them to be spam and the Penguin algorithm is on a mission to clean them up. Nearly everyone lost link juice from the Penguin algo, but it only seriously affected those sites that depended entirely on those kinds of links to rank their site. Some went up in the rankings because they had a few crappy links from a few sites that either timed out, were sold and or turned into a link-building site with Adsense.
During the “link era,” links pretty much created the SERP’s and there are many sites that ranked during the link era that can’t be found where they use to be or can’t be found at all. Before considering additional, good links, make sure that’s really the reason your site isn’t ranking after Penguin. And if your considering using one of the companies that worked before…Don’t.
Just because Penguin dealt with link spam doesn’t mean you need additional good links. What it does mean is that, if you didn’t rank before the link era that dominated the SERPs, there might be something else you should be focusing on or maybe even a few other things.
The bottom line is to get your website in order first. This is where a good SEO professional can be of value.