Google Link Spam Update 2021 – Maybe You’re Doing Linking in the Wrong Way

Google Link Spam Update 2021

Shams Sumon August 5, 2021

8 Min Read
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Category: News

Google has announced another new update this year named Link Spam Update and the impact is expected to be broad and across all languages that Google supports. This latest algorithm update started rolling out on July 26, 2021, and it will take a couple of weeks to be fully rolled out.

With this update, Google wants site owners to pay attention when handling the links within the content. Moreover, Google listed some guidelines to help site owners get the best practices when linking out to other sites.

So, if you’re a site owner and don’t want to lose traffic by ignoring this latest algorithm update, stick with this blog. In this post, we will take a ride to Google Link Spam Update 2021 and try to figure out the best way to handle linking. Keep reading!

Google Link Spam Update – Important Points That You Need to Be Aware of

Google Link Spam Update 2021

Before anything else, let us show you what Google had to say about this Link Spam Update.

In our continued efforts to improve the quality of the search results, we’re launching a new link spam fighting change today — which we call the “link spam update.” This algorithm update, which will rollout across the next two weeks, is even more effective at identifying and nullifying link spam more broadly, across multiple languages. Sites taking part in link spam will see changes in Search as those links are re-assessed by our algorithms.

  • The explanation says Google has been finding more and more websites using outbound links as a means to monetize their websites. What this means is there are chances websites that follow spammy link-building practices will see a drop in rankings after the rollout. 
  • You may have noticed the word “nullifying” in this statement which does not necessarily mean “penalize,” but instead, to ignore or simply not count. However, it may feel a penalty in some cases. How?
  • Well, let’s assume, you have put some spammy links in your content to get a better ranking on SERP. Now Google ain’t prioritize your links for better ranking rather than Google will ignore those links. That means those links will not help you to get a better ranking. That would feel like a penalty, right?

So, if you see your rankings drop over the next two weeks and if it is a sharper drop, it might be related to this update. Now let’s talk about how we can prepare our sites according to this Link Spam Update to not experience a sharper traffic drop.

Best Practices That You Should Follow According to This Update

SEO Link Buidling

Google themselves guided us on how we should handle linking to avoid any traffic drop due to this latest algorithm update. They are mainly concerned with three major issues – Affiliate links, Sponsored links, and Guest posts. Here are the best practices that Google suggested we should follow.

1. Affiliate Links 

Sites are required to add links when there is communication between two domains. After this new update, it has become compulsory to qualify links appropriately when linking to other sites.

Google requests and fully supports the idea of joining affiliate programs to qualify links with rel= “sponsored.” So, you have no problem to join affiliate programs and promote affiliate links. But make sure you mark your link as rel=”sponsored”.

Also read: Best WordPress Amazon Affiliate Themes in 2024

2. Sponsored Links 

Google link spam update supports paid link building when a website pays a third-party domain for a followed backlink that points back to their territory.

But, Google’s advice on links from subsidized posts is to be marked with rel= “sponsored” value. Paid links generated from advertisements or paid settlements must be marked with the deal mentioned above.

3. Guest Posts

Guest posts are one of the most successful off-page SEO methods to generate traffic without harming integrity. Google update SEO considers guest blogging links for marking in SEO optimization.

Links from guest posts are to be marked up with the rel=“no follow” value.

These are the best practices that you should follow as a site owner or marketer. So, from now onwards try to practice these rules while linking your content. Otherwise, it will count as a wrong way to linking and Google will nullify all those links.

Related: Google AMP Is No Longer Needed- Now Anyone Can Be on the Top Stories

Prepare Your Site – If You Don’t Want to Lose Your Ranking

Every time Google releases a new update, we need to respond as soon as possible. Otherwise, it could be a reason to lose our traffic. So, if you don’t want to lose traffic and get outranked by your competitors, follow the best practices according to the Google Link Spam Update 2021 while placing links to or from your content.

Here is a quick overview of Google Link Spam Update:

  • Started Monday, July 26th, 2021
  • Will take two weeks to roll out
  • Global and multilingual update
  • Nullify spammy links but not penalize them
  • Ignoring links will feel like a penalty

Best practices you should follow to avoid traffic drop:

Affiliate Links: This type of link should be marked up with rel=”sponsored”.

Sponsored Post Links: Advertisement or paid links should be marked up with rel=”sponsored”.

Guest Post Links: Links from guest posts should be marked up with rel=”nofollow”.

That’s all from this latest Google update. Let us know if you have any confusion regarding this update through the comment box below. We would love to help you out. Thank you.

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Shams Sumon

Shams is a content writer with a passion for making WordPress topics easy to understand for everyone through conversational and storytelling approaches. With a background in the WordPress industry since 2019, he has developed a knack for breaking down complex technical concepts into digestible bites. When he's not crafting engaging content, Shams can be found watching football matches, catching up on the latest movies, or exploring new destinations to rejuvenate himself.

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