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Confessions of a Google Spammer – Relationship to Link Structure

Confessions of a Google Spammer is a very eye-opening blog that tells the ups and downs of a google spammer a few years ago. The author made a fortune by link building around 2012. At the time Google’s algorithm has not been perfected yet, the author wrote, “I could literally rank first page for any keyword I wanted to with about 5 minutes of effort.” This was done by a lot of backlinking to the client’s site, so Google’s algorithm thinks the client’s site is very significant since there are many sites linking to it, thus making the site appear on the top of search results. However, the success of backlink did not continue for long. After Google updated its algorithm to rank pages, the author’s link building industry crumbled. “Within 2 months, our entire network of 5,000+ blogs—for which we paid more than $80,000—was deindexed, dead, simply kaput. Our $100k/mo business was ruined.”

This blog was extremely interesting to read for its many connections to link structure. In class we discussed about authority and hub. An authority is good when many hubs link to it, a hub is good when it links to many authorities. In the context of the google spammer, the “link building” he referred to was actually making many hubs link to the same authority, thus making the authority very important. This strategy became extinct a few years back, as Google started to track the kind of hubs that linked to the authority. If the “topic” of the hubs did not match the authority, Google’s new algorithm will not be tricked by this “fake” link. It is very interesting to see how the link structure we studied can be exploited to create a fortune for a generation of spammers. The link structure did have lots of real-life implications.


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