What to do against a Private Backlink Network

Prejudiced image of a hacker on the internet [large]

After reaching the first page on Google for my katakana converter, I decided to do some research. I wanted to know which blogs linked to the better search results so that I could do some cold outreach for my own site.

Hence, I used the free backlink checker. This tools is quite handy because it doesn’t require you to register, pay, or give up your soul. Furthermore, their spiders seems to be running for at last 3 years because I have already seen seen backlinks which have been discovered in 2015. Therefore their database seems quite good, just not current. You can expect that they won’t have a link in the database if it isn’t older than a month. But, that isn’t so important if you want to do backlink research for old search entries.

As it turns out, I am competing against people who clearly violate Google’s Link Scheme rule or are framed by someone as if they used them. Nonetheless, Google has to be notified about them. Below you see the results from my investigations.

Search engine results for hiragana converter [large]

First culprit / suspect

First culprit [large]
First evidence [large]
First example [large]

Second culprit / suspect

Second culprit [large]
Second evidence [large]
Second example [large]

Accomplice

Below you see an example page where the culprits/suspects probably bought their links from. They clicked the banner on the bottom of the example pages. Then selected their category. And finally, payed the appropriate amount to the link builder to be included in their network.

Let's take a look [large]
Nope [large]

Counter

If you ever find such a site, don’t hesitate to contact Google. The best course is to use their report spam form by clicking “tell us about it” which will ask you about 3 things:

  • A link to the seller of backlinks
  • A link to the buyer of backlinks
  • Additional details

That’s all. Upon submitting it, you will get an email that looks like this:

Automated email by Google Search Console Team [large]

As I have submitted these 2 sites just an hour before writing this post, I can’t tell when my reports will be processed. I’ll update this post in the future about any developments.

I hope this will help you counter unfair link building behaviors if you ever suspect them or encounter them.


The mind agrees.