Beware of SEO Hijacking

I received an email from a source I don’t know telling me a link was broken on my website and recommended we link to a new site. What is this all about?

By Jennifer Manocchio

We highly recommend you do your homework first and don’t automatically change the link to the site the email is recommending. This is a very clever SEO approach that is on the rise, according to SEO expert and co-founder of diabetesdaily.com David Edelman.

There are tools available on the web that SEO experts can use to find broken links, like a link checker or broken link tool. The SEO expert identifies a reputable website he or she wants linking to their site (or a client’s site), finds a broken link and recommends their site (or client’s website) to help increase their organic search engine rankings.

Edelman provided a good example to highlight how this approach is working. “A reputable site like Harvard changes its site structure and breaks some old incoming links. A clever SEO expert searches for all high-quality sites linking to that page and emails them: Hey, your page has a broken link. Here’s the updated URL. They provide a link to their client’s site (or their own), which is hardly as credible as Harvard. This is a great way to get links from reputable sites.”

This is just one clever approach SEO experts are using to increase website rankings. Simply being aware of these approaches will help ensure you don’t fall for the trap.

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