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Old 03-16-2005   #1
Control PC
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Could linking in Forum sig's hurt my SE ranking?

Hi, first post

I build custom PCs in the UK and I made a website for promotion and general information. I also help out (rather a lot) in a couple of PC Hardware forums, one in the US and one in the UK.

I just submitted my site to Google, Yahoo and MSN search and decided I would add a link to my website in my sigs on these forums. One of the forums is very popular (I have 7000+ posts in this one) and I see threads appear in google searches on occasion.

Obviously SEO wasn't the only reason for me linking to my site in my sig as I hope to generate interest from those who are new to computers that I help on the forums. Posting on the forums is kind of a way of showing off my expertise and gaining trust as well as helping people out obviously.

My question is could these links be considered "bad links" and in turn be damaging on my SE raking? Although I personally would consider them very relevant, I worry it will hinder my ranking rather than improve them.

Thanks,
Jordan
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Old 03-16-2005   #2
sem4u
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In a word: no
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Old 03-16-2005   #3
excell
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Your usage sounds very legit and helpful to the user to me.
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Old 03-16-2005   #4
I, Brian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Control PC
My question is could these links be considered "bad links" and in turn be damaging on my SE raking? Although I personally would consider them very relevant, I worry it will hinder my ranking rather than improve them.
No - *but* I would recommend you not put too much faith in using them for targeting specific keyphrases for Google SEO purposes. It sounds like you're not talking about a wide spread of IPs, plus Google has tools available for devaluing multiple same-links from a domain, even IP range. So the effect of keyphrase targeting on Google could be very limited indeed.

MSN will probably enjoy it, though.

It would certainly be worth writing a short descriptive phrase about your business and what it does in your signature, and placing the link within that description.

This is because a lot of people - even in SEO circles - completely fail to appreciate that search engines will rank a site not simply for keyphrases, but also fragments of keyphrases present in anchor text. So a longer and more descriptive signature link would entitle your site for association with a far wider range of keyword/keyphrase elements.

And it's a heck of a lot more useful for human users, too.
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Old 03-16-2005   #5
Control PC
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OK, thanks I do have a short description around the link with a couple of key words but I'll make it more descriptive.

Could you guys check out this post too http://forums.searchenginewatch.com/...ead.php?t=4707

Just if you get the cance. It's related to the same site but different inboud links and user group. It's this one I'm more worried about.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-16-2005   #6
Michael Martinez
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Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Control PC
My question is could these links be considered "bad links" and in turn be damaging on my SE raking? Although I personally would consider them very relevant, I worry it will hinder my ranking rather than improve them.

Thanks,
Jordan
I do this all the time. You will be fine as far as Google is concerned. They don't penalize sites for having a lot of links from forums.

What you will probably lose in the end, however, is the value those links bring to your site in terms of Google's estimation. If the forum operators adopt or implement software which automatically renders .sig links irrelevant with the REL=NOFOLLOW tag, Google will stop crawling them.
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