With recent search engine penalizations and guidelines promoted by some of the most popular search engines becoming increasingly stricter, there are many who have raised concerns about the benefits of getting paid links and listings from paid web directories.
Search Engine Penalizations for Paid Links
The idea all began with the fact that buying and selling links became the norm for some entrepreneurs, to the point that search engine results began being manipulated by their efforts to such an extent that internet users’ searching experience was negatively influenced.
As a result, well-known search engines like Google stepped up to penalize and ban the promotion of paid links.
If you own a website and you are paying for backlinks to increase your PageRank and move your site higher up on search engine result pages, this may earn you a penalization or banning from various search engines.
While those search engines do not penalize your use of links to gain a following, they are against any form of linking that would influence their search engine results, and they recommend users to ask for a “no-follow” link in such cases to avoid being penalized.
Differences in Directory Submission
Although you still have to be careful which directories you submit to, most paid directories are quite safe. Search engines are not in the habit of penalizing paid web directories unless they allow spam and links pointing to malware. In fact, directories with professionally reviewed listings can help you gain better recognition from search engines – not because of the link to your site, but because of the content associated with what you’re promoting.
Basically, when you pay for a submission and review, you get a fair evaluation of your website, along with a no-follow link meant to help people reach your site. You can, therefore, gain a lot of recognition for your online business without being against any of Google’s policies; so it’s a win-win.