Buying Paid Links from Blogs

Blog links are not only more valuable but they are also more economical and easier to secure than website links. This is one reason why these links are gaining so much hype when it comes to SEO. This article discusses the following points:
  • How to locate blogs to buy paid links
  • Segregating Good Blogs from the Bad Ones
  • Blogs that you need to avoid
  • Approaching Blogs with the Paid Link Request
  • Type of links that can be secured from blogs

How to Locate Blogs to Buy Paid Links?

You can locate blogs using blog directories as well as blog search engines.

Blog Directories: A search in google will bring forth a host of blog directories. But for convenience I have listed a few here:
  • Blogcatalog.com
  • Blogarama.com
  • Bloggernity.com
  • Blogs.botw.org
  • Poweredbywp.com
  • Blogdirs.com
Blog Search Engines: When we think of blog search engines, there are only two names that come to mind. One is Technorati and the other one is Google blog search

Both of these services are good and can help you easily search and locate blogs/blog posts on a specific topic/industry

Segregating Good Blogs from the Bad Blogs

The following factors can help you find good blogs from average and bad blogs.

Page Rank: Although PR is not such an important factor anymore, as a rule of the thumb it is always better to avoid older blogs with a PR0. This is because Google has been penalizing many blogs of-late for participating in ‘Sponsored Review’ programs. So chances are that if a blog is old and the PR is ‘0’, you have a victim at hand. (How do you find if the blog is old? Just check the post dates)

Frequency of Posts/Updation Frequency: Good blogs are updated regularly. Any blog with a post rate of 1 or 2 posts a week is good.

Number of Pages in Index: Check pages in Google index by doing a site search (type site:blogname.com in google to do a site search). The more pages indexed the better

Age of the Blog: Older blogs offer more value than newer ones

Quality of Advertisements: Blogs that advertise a lot of affiliate programs and unrelated stuff especially poker, casino related material are better avoided

Number of Backlinks: Check backlinks in Yahoo using a linkdomain search (type linkdomain:blogname.com - blogname.com in yahoo). The more the backlinks the better.

Quality of Posts and Blog Comments: Popular blogs have good quality content and faithful followers, and these followers post comments. So if you see a lot of comments being posted then that directly implies that you have a quality blog at hand. Good blogs also moderate comments and do not allow spammy comments to remain active. Chances are that the blog might have loads of comments but all spammy and un-moderated. Such blogs are better avoided

Cache Rate: You can check the last cache date of a blog using the cache (type cache:http://www.blogname.com in google) command or directly using the “show cached snapshot” plugin in Google toolbar. Just ensure that the last cache date is not too old. A cache which is six to seven days old from the current date is good enough.

Blogs Hosted on Free and Paid Platforms: There are a host of services that offer free blog hosting platforms. Some of them are:
  • Blogspot.com
  • MSDN.com
  • Wordpress.com
  • Livejournal.com
  • Xanga.com
  • Rediffblogs.com
  • Ibibo.com
Blogs hosted on free platforms will have URLs that look something like sitename.blogspot.com or sitename.wordpress.com

Links from blogs hosted on free platforms do not pass on as much value as blogs hosted on paid platforms. But again, this does not mean that freely hosted blogs can be avoided altogether. Based on the factors mentioned in this article, good freely hosted blogs can always be considered for buying links.

Blogs You Can Consider Avoiding

Google has of-late started penalized blogs that actively sell paid links. So buying links from such blogs is not going to be of much use unless you are buying the link for direct traffic (traffic from the blog) in which case you can consider using a nofollow to your link.

Blogs that Participate in Paid Blogging Networks: Blogs that participate in paid blogging networks generally have a link back to the network they are promoting on their sidebar. In addition most blogs will have a disclosure policy stating that they offer sponsored postings. Using this information Google can easily identify such blogs and devalue links.

Example of a disclosure: http://www.stellasblog.com/2007/07/paid-posting-disclosure.html

Some of the most popular paid blogging networks are as follows:
  • Payperpost.com
  • Sponsoredreviews.com
  • Reviewme.com
  • Creamaid.com
Related News – Google penalizing payperpost publisher blogs:

Payperpost Bloggers Get Slammed by Google
Payperpost Users Freaking Out Over Google Pagerank Nuke
Sponsored Posts that Can Get You Banned by Google

Blogs that are MFSP: MFSP stands for ‘Made for Sponsored Posts’. MFSP blogs have nothing other than sponsored posts. There are no natural posts at all and in most cases the blog will not have a specific theme and will post on a host of topics ranging from sports to technology.

Such blogs can also be easily identified by google and devaluing them.

Approaching Blogs with the Paid Link Request

Approaching blogs with sponsored link requests is no different from approaching a website for buying a paid link. The only issue with blogs would be the lack of contact details as many bloggers run non-commercial blogs.

Such blogs can be contacted using the blog comment section. Make sure to include your email address in the space provided within the form and not within the comment body. In addition ensure not to give out your website name both in the comment body and within the space provided in the form. You can keep the message generic stating that you are interested in buying a blog post and are using the comment form as there were no other contact details available. Request the blogger to get back to you using the email address provided if interested. You can also ask the blogger to delete your comment once read.

Types of Links that Blogs Can Offer

Blogroll Links: Blogrolls are links that run throughout the blog and are generally located on the blog sidebar.

Blogpost Links: Blogpost links are links that are embedded within a blog post or are added at the end of the blog post. Blog post links can be secured from existing blog posts as well as new specially written sponsored posts
  • Links from Existing Blog Posts: Find out blog posts that are related to your website topic or even better have a keyword for which you are building links for and ask for a backlink from there. Best way to find related posts is by using the ‘site’ command in Google followed by the respective keyword or topic theme. (type site:blogname.com +keyword in Google)
  • Links from Fresh New Blog Posts/Sponsored Posts: Sponsored posts are posts written by the blogger specially for you. Alternatively you can also submit a pre-written article to the blogger which he can then add as a blog post. There are two types of sponsored posts as follows:
    • Website/product Reviews: Reviews involve writing a review about a product/service or website with a link back to the reviewed site
    • Sponsored Article: A sponsored article is a general article written on the topic with necessary keywords which can then be anchored to the host site (site seeking the links)
  • Blog Comment Links: Blog comment links are links secured by commenting on blog posts. These links are generally nofollowed and hence pass little to no value. But there are many blogs out there that offer followed links that can help pass on some backlink value. But overall blog comment links are not as valuable as the other types of links discussed.

Planning Your Blog Link Campaign

As an online marketer your primary priority when it comes to securing paid links is to ensure that Google does not recognize your link as a paid link. The best way to do this is by secured links from Good blogs (as already mentioned in the article) and to plan your campaign effectively. Some pointers are as follows:
  • Get links over a period of time. Don’t get too many links pointing to your site from a host of blogs within a short period of time. Haste makes waste and it very well applies here as well
  • Mix your links up with blogroll links as well as blog post links. Avoid getting too many links from blogrolls
  • Don’t focus solely on blog links, get links from other sources as well
  • Vary your keywords
  • Don’t buy too many links from blogs hosted over the same Class C IP range