Thanks Thanks:  0
Likes Likes:  0
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 14
  1. #1
    Member Since
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    110
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Links in footers may not count for much.

    I think that most of us kind of suspected this, but it was interesting to hear John Mueller and Zineb Ait talk about it:

    https://www.seroundtable.com/google-...ght-21540.html

    Zineb says,

    je laisserai faire l'algo. Les liens sitewide en footer ou en header n'ont pas un tres grand poids en general.

    Translation:

    I let do the algo. The sitewide header and footer links are not a very great weight in general.
    I wonder if any web design companies or marketing companies will change their strategy. Perhaps instead of putting a "designed by ....." in the footer, they'll find a way to work a paragraph into the company's about page.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Member Since
    Jun 2012
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    17,044
    Thanks (Received)
    40
    Likes (Received)
    42

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    Thanks for sharing that Marie. It does kind of make sense since it's overdone so often, especially like you said, by designers.

    However if designers were doing it for the right reasons, to advertise their hard work for others visiting the site that might need a designer, then it's still a good thing to do I would think. Just don't count on those backlinks to give you much boost.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".

  3. #3
    Member Since
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    110
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    Good point. I think all designers and SEOs go through some kind of agony when deciding on what to put in the footer. If the main idea is to advertise, then a nofollowed link in the footer is a good idea.

    BUT....

    If you're an SEO company with 100 clients and you can get 100 clients to all link to you with followed links, then it's pretty tempting to get some followed links in there.

    I wrote a post a while back on everything that Google has said about footer links and SEO. In some cases brand anchored followed links are probably perfectly acceptable in Google's eyes. (Now, if your brand happens to be called "Seattle Web Design Company" then that's a different story.)

    But John Mueller did say that the best link is one where the site owner is aware that the link is there and wants to have the link there. It's pretty obvious that "designed by" footer links are not really editorially placed. So, if there is a way to get clients to mention their design company in the body of a post somewhere, this really would be an editorially gained link and a good one.

  4. #4
    Member Since
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    477
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    We build tons of websites and we usually forego the footer links for this reason. We have also wondered what other "par for the course" tactics Google throws out the window since there are a lot of tactics like this that are prolific around the web. Thanks for the share. Your blog post was very insightful as well.
    Free Local Checklist
    51Blocks - "White Label" Google Places & Website Development/Hosting - Will Pay Good $$ for Wordpress website hosting referrals
    Wordpress Site Speed Problems? Site speed optimization is part of our hosting - 90's on Google PageSpeed Insights

  5. #5
    Member Since
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    310
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    3-5 years ago buying links that were located in headers/footers on 'niche' sites was pervasive. It makes sense that Google's algo would adjust the weight of those links.

    Most vulnerable WP installs at some point will be hacked and a header/footer link will be added for nefarious purposes (likely for some sort of male enhancement drug).

    But I think web developers putting links in footers still holds weight for getting people who go 'Man this is a nice website, who made it?!', but it isn't the most effective way to build links for search purposes.

    If the company site has a blog, maybe an initial post talking about the design/re-design and company who did it would be best.

    .02

  6. #6
    Member Since
    Sep 2014
    Location
    San Marcos, CA
    Posts
    528
    Thanks (Received)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    1

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    Quote Originally Posted by heckler View Post
    ...But I think web developers putting links in footers still holds weight for getting people who go 'Man this is a nice website, who made it?!', but it isn't the most effective way to build links for search purposes. ...
    That's my opinion as well. I place footer links on most of my clients' websites, with their knowledge and consent. No small business client has so far prohibited me from doing so.

  7. #7
    Member Since
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    3,272
    Thanks (Received)
    27
    Likes (Received)
    32

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    Quote Originally Posted by tcolling View Post
    That's my opinion as well. I place footer links on most of my clients' websites, with their knowledge and consent. No small business client has so far prohibited me from doing so.
    Exactly. I do the same.

    This really isn't a new thing. Google made it very clear quite some time ago that sitewide links of any kind are of limited value. If you're looking to advertise on another site, a text link in the footer is probably a waste of your money.

    But that doesn't mean the designer's link has no value. It does help in advertising and it may provide a slight link boost too.

  8. #8
    Member Since
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    953
    Thanks (Received)
    6
    Likes (Received)
    12

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    While I figured those links held about as much weight as any other sitewide link, I've seen in a few cases I worked on that removing those gave a client's website a slight boost.

    Even if we set aside the "SEO reasons" for that link, I wouldn't put my link in the footer of a client website. The reward doesn't seem greater than the risk; and i'm not just talking about any sort of impact from Google. Realistically how much qualified traffic has anyone received from those links? How many leads? How many new clients came from another client's footer link? I would believe it if a client told someone else about you, since word of mouth is still very powerful (personal reviews are still a great lead gen method). However, how many have actually tracked their referral traffic effectively from a client site to prove that as a genuine lead gen source? I haven't seen anything great from those links. Someone is more likely to ask your client who made the website and get an opinion before calling.

    What I have seen is that those links are a dangerous footprint for your competitors to harvest your client list. By putting that link the footer, you just publicized your list of web dev or SEO clients. How much easier could you make it for someone to collect that list and reach out to everyone your working with? Sure, they may not be 100% successful at poaching your clients but I really doubt that anyone has a perfect relationship with all their clients. All it takes is a little doubt in the client's mind, and they could drop you in favor of your competitor.

    So does the reward of a potential client (if we're not counting SEO value of that link) outweigh the risk of someone stealing clients? My opinion is no since I've helped agencies find this footprint and try to exploit it.
    My rarely updated website (I should fix that) - https://www.ericrohrback.com
    Follow me on Twitter
    Want to talk? Book time with me here

  9. #9
    Member Since
    Sep 2014
    Location
    San Marcos, CA
    Posts
    528
    Thanks (Received)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    1

    Links in footers may not count for much.

    That's a good point Eric. I have also used that tactic to win over clients from my own competitors.

    Do most of your new clients come from referrals?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Member Since
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    953
    Thanks (Received)
    6
    Likes (Received)
    12

    Re: Links in footers may not count for much.

    I stopped doing agency work, and went in-house (corporate isn't as bad as some think ) but when I was in agency we got a pretty good mix of referral, organic, and paid search leads. We were also in a unique place where we were an outsource partner for SEO/PPC/Web Design for other agencies, so I had a very unique chance to see the marketing strategies for a ton of agencies around the country.

    One case that sticks out in my mind is helping an agency with a ranking problem for "seo + city" and "search engine optimization + city" kind of keywords. I found they were slapping a link in the footer of every client site they worked on. We dropped the link (turned to text), and saw positive movement. We also had a very good lead tracking system in place that would track both web form completions and phone calls, so I knew where they were (or weren't) getting leads when it came to their online marketing efforts. Across hundreds of agencies that we were able to work with I never saw a lead come through with a referral from an end-client website. Could I have missed some? Sure, but the sample size was large enough and the volume of leads from that source wasn't noticeable for us to catch.

    If you're doing something out of the box to get leads through customers, then I'd say keep it up. Personally I'm against putting links in client footers because of the reasons i've listed. For local agencies, word of mouth is still very important to getting new business. If your client's aren't talking about how great you are, then you should be asking what more you can do.
    My rarely updated website (I should fix that) - https://www.ericrohrback.com
    Follow me on Twitter
    Want to talk? Book time with me here

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 10
    Last Post: 12-27-2012, 05:00 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •