I got a nasty letter from Google last week. It didn't help that I was in the middle of a massive redo on my computer and generally pissed about that.
At 3 in the morning as I tried desperately to move my downloader into my "C" drive with my fingers crossed that FINALLY I could install iTunes once again, I did not need to read that I was doing illegal things on my blog and if I did not fix the problem, my rank for Google Search would tank to the ends of the universe.
Excuse me??? I don't even have ads on my blog and do not get paid to post recipes using Brand Name products. What the hell where they talking about.
Seems I have bad links that cause search engines to click on sites that don't follow the rules, giving them FREE clicks.
OK, once again......what the crap do they mean?
I did not need another massive problem solving, time wasting project to fix when I couldn't even fix the vehicle they said I needed to remove these "bad links" from.
Instead of explaining how to fix this problem, they posted a video that pretty much told me I was breaking the GOOGLE law and if I continue in my bad ways, they would bury me in outer space.
I finally had to laugh, because I am pretty sure my ranking on search engines is at the bottom of the barrel, so do I really care what they can do to me?
I do care that there are bloggers out there that are as clueless as I was, who could benefit from the info I gathered on what to do if they also get a letter from the GOOGLE police.
What are bad links and how do you fix them?
When you link to an outside source (food blogs would link to give credit to the inspiration for posted recipes, retail food and book sellers, contest sponsors and other blogs in general), the search engines don't distinguish why those links are there, they think you are selling your links for profit and therefore, that must stop!!
So, at the very end of the coding that points to an outside site, you must include a "no follow" direction. People on your site, can still be linked if they click, so credit will be given where it deserves to be, but the "no follow" code stops the search engines from clicking on them, therefore you will no longer get counterfeit clicks.
If you are like me, and dutifully link back nice things to others, you will have to add a few words to each link on your site. If you have published posts for 6 or more years, have entered numerous contests that require many posted links, it could take you a week of doing nothing but opening each post and making the necessary corrections.
I have been doing just that for three days straight and have only manage to correct 200 of the over 1,000 published posts. Why am I only finding out about this NOW????
a basic link looks like this (http://www.cookingwithdiabetes.blogspot.com/).
To make the link legal you will have to add "rel="nofollow" right after the .com so that it should look like http://www.cookingwithdiabetes.blogspot.com/ rel="nofollow">.
The next time you set up a link using blogger you should see at the bottom of the link box, the option to use the Add 'rel=nofollow' attribute. From this day forward you will never break the law. Unfortunately all your old links will have to be fixed.
Do I feel stupid? No, I do not. I am pissed that blogger did not make this clear when I created my blog and I have many more hours of bull crap ahead of me.