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Forum signatures SEO

Discussion in 'Link Development' started by Sarah Paris, Jan 10, 2014.

  1. #1
    Does Google reward or penalize websites for backlinks from forum signatures? I heard a past update made it bad to have forum signature backlinks but I need to make sure. Thank you!

    Regards
    Sarah Paris, Jan 10, 2014 IP
  2. Annea

    Annea Active Member

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    #2
    Do many forums have dofollow links these days anyway? If they do, I don't see why that would be bad, assuming they are relevant to your niche/site. I'm not an expert though, so someone who is may have a different opinion.
    Annea, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  3. luke6966

    luke6966 Member

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    #3
    They are still good to have.

    But don't make them your only link source.

    Also I wouldn't put they keywords you want to rank for in your signature links.

    Just keep branded keywords, domain name, or bare url
    luke6966, Jan 10, 2014 IP
  4. tycho

    tycho Greenhorn

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    #4
    Overdoing it is the problem, you want quality over quantity.
    Don't go signing up for every single form you can and get form profile/sig links. It's all about quality.
    tycho, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  5. Stikky

    Stikky Peon

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    #5
    Too much of anything is bad, make sure your back link portfolio is spread out between types of back links. I wouldn't allow more than 8% of your back links to be forum signatures. Even is they are nofollow, they do have a little bit of value.
    Stikky, Jan 10, 2014 IP
  6. ryan_uk

    ryan_uk Prominent Member

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    #6
    Did you actually think to read Google Webmaster Guidelines??? Surely anyone involved in SEO, making/developing websites, or managing a site should?

    https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/66356

    Read and you will find forum posts/signatures as an example of link schemes.
    ryan_uk, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  7. BoostSoftware

    BoostSoftware Active Member

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    #7
    Thanks for posting that webmaster guideline page, Ryan_UK. This is a good reminder for all of us. Search engine are becoming stricter about this.
    BoostSoftware, Jan 10, 2014 IP
  8. Jim4767

    Jim4767 Notable Member

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    #8
    I hope you will all pay heed to the link in ryan_uk's post. I took keyword-based links to my website out of my Digital Point signature quite a while ago.
    Jim4767, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  9. link.sudipto

    link.sudipto Member

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    #9
    It depends on the forum and your activity. Many seo professionals randomly create a account in forums to get a signature link and they stay idle in those forums. So, this type of like are not good as google gives preference to quality link building. However, you can still have signature link if you maintain your account with relevant and useful activity in that forum. I prefer the signature link related to the forum topic too.
    link.sudipto, Jan 10, 2014 IP
  10. ryan_uk

    ryan_uk Prominent Member

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    #10
    You are misguidedly calling them "seo professionals", unless you are being sarcastic? :p It is far from professional. The best use of forums is to represent your brand. A good place to study this is Web Hosting Talk - there are a lot of hosts there and they not only promote their products in the appropriate market section, but also try to assist people who post complaints/problems or similar. This is also done by some companies on Money Saving Expert, too. They are a good place to engage with your customers, but also to build your reputation (or destroy it if your customer service is atrocious/hostile). There are plenty of other forums where this happens without idiotic spamming - webmasters and SEOs, take note!
    ryan_uk, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  11. ranvijay

    ranvijay Active Member

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    #11
    Kindly ref. to the attachment - forum-comment.jpg . Google explains "
    • Forum comments with optimized links in the post or signature, for example:
      Thanks, that’s great info!
      - Paul
      paul’s pizza san diego pizza best pizza san diego
    forum-comments.jpg
    Active participation, value adding posts & comments, Naked ULRs or Brand name used in signatures are not going to harm. (It's not mentioned on referred link - but it's personal opinion - ref. to attachment - rediis-v7n.jpg)
    rediis-v7n.jpg

    I totally agree with you in terms of niche & activity.
    I am on V7N since 2009, I always keep my websites as signature URL, It's a dofollow link. See the backlinks here - ref. to attachment -rediis-ahref.com

    rediis-ahref.jpg

    Rediis.com appearing on 13th for the key term "Unnatural Links Penalty".
    google-search.jpg

    Now if you see that this could be due to "new domain" ref to rediis-whois.jpg. It's more than 1 year.

    rediis-whois.jpg

    What's your opinion on this?
    ranvijay, Jan 10, 2014 IP
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  12. ryan_uk

    ryan_uk Prominent Member

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    #12
    "Kindly" refer to 1) the original post, 2) consider the importance of reading a search engine's guidelines and 3) applying common sense to them. As you can see in the guidelines, forum posts and signatures are provided as an example when they are keyword optimised, ergo one would avoid such an approach.

    Firstly, your article is not at #13 for that term (at least not for US search results; do a USA search with personalisation disabled), but instead #24.

    Again, refer to the post I responded to. I quote (and will bold the parts you ignored), "Many seo professionals randomly create a account in forums to get a signature link and they stay idle in those forums." I can't quite call that a professional tactic, but rather a spam one.

    You are also looking at correlation as causation, but as a professional you should know better. Surely you know, "correlation does not imply causation". Start here:
    http://moz.com/rand/what-do-correlation-metrics-really-tell-us-about-search-rankings/

    And finally, regarding forum links, it's a false economy to rely upon them for rankings (or to have a high volume of self-made links compared to natural sources). Any link you are able to place yourself should be one you imagine as nofollow or invisible. It's naive to believe that Google doesn't understand when they are self-created. It doesn't mean they do not have a purpose on a forum where you are active, it can be great for traffic IF they are used honestly and not for spamming. In fact, I wish more forums would take DigitalPoint's approach: 1) nofollow the links and 2) hide them from logged out visitors.

    Read this to understand it better (and watch the video):
    http://www.searchenginejournal.com/matt-cutts-explains-how-to-avoid-spam-penalties/77671/
    Comments are mentioned frequently, but remember that this is about forum posts/signatures, too.
    ryan_uk, Jan 11, 2014 IP
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  13. dodlly

    dodlly Member

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    #13
    i got #1 in google with just forum signatures
    dodlly, Jan 11, 2014 IP
  14. Jim4767

    Jim4767 Notable Member

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    #14
    Sorry, that won't happen for a keyword(s) that is reasonably competitive. And "just forum signatures" will be a large red flag to Google, since it is absolutely an "unnatural link profile".
    Jim4767, Jan 12, 2014 IP
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  15. dodlly

    dodlly Member

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    #15
    yes it was easy competitive - thank you
    dodlly, Jan 12, 2014 IP
  16. #16
    It all comes to quality. Google won't penalize anyone who is producing quality no mater if he puts a link in the signature of a forum or not.

    The point Google is trying to tell us is totally different that the point ''SEO experts'' tell. It is not about forum signatures, directories or ''bad links'' what most people call them. It is about people who are stupid enough to submit their link to 50 different directories in one day. Then they end up penalized from Google and they start telling how links from directories are bad links.
    VukasinI, Jan 12, 2014 IP
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  17. dodlly

    dodlly Member

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    #17

    you are Right
    dodlly, Jan 12, 2014 IP
  18. VukasinI

    VukasinI Active Member

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    #18
    Please, stop making posts just to get huge post count or likes. If you don't have anything smart to say, then don't post. It is better to have few posts that worth anything than thousands of posts with two words in it.
    VukasinI, Jan 12, 2014 IP
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  19. neelsharma

    neelsharma Member

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    #19
    Well, I don't think that sign. link really effect, but yes if you using your same keywords in forum sign links then it can harmful. The forums which you are using should be highly traffic, have page rank, related to your website niche etc.I just want to example this forum (digitalpoint) is really great forum and if we get permission to add our sign link here then I will do this fast.
    neelsharma, Jan 13, 2014 IP
  20. Long Nguyen

    Long Nguyen Banned

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    #20
    I think backlinks in signature are useful for SEO, but I don't know how Google evaluates this kind of backlinks high or low.:(
    Long Nguyen, Jan 13, 2014 IP