With the big crackdown on spammy link building practices over the past two years at Google, there are still many webmasters left with questions about what exactly constitutes a spammy practice. Google has previously advised against using links in forum “signatures” as a means of link building, but what about using a link in a comment when it is topically relevant and contributes to the conversation? That is exactly the question Matt Cutts answered in a Webmaster Chat video on Wednesday.
The short answer is that using links to your site in your comments is fine the majority of the time. Everyone who actually contributes to forums has a habit of linking to relevant information, and that often includes their own blogs. But, like everything, it can be abused.
Matt gave some tips to ensure your comments don’t get flagged as spammy by Google or the sites you are commenting on.
- If you can, use your real name when commenting. Using a company name or anchor text you want to rank for gives the appearance of commenting for commercial marketing purposes, which raises the spam alarm.
- If you are using leaving links in blog post comments as your primary means for linkbuilding and the majority of your links come from blog comments, Google will probably flag you.
You can see the video below.