The Link Building industry will ALWAYS be a dirty place.
9/10 link opportunities are crap.
Earning genuine links is, of course, becoming more difficult as more premium, established websites change their link model to UGC Sponsored / NOFOLLOW.
I have clients running PR campaigns where 80% of the links they get are NOFOLLOW, 10-15% are behind re-direction URLS where no equity is passed.
Earning genuine links is great, viable and is obviously the way forward for any solid, compliant and ethical SEO campaign. But, how many clients will wait for 12 months, 24 months, 36 months to “earn” enough links to make a noticeable difference to true domain weight/brand weight?
To top it off – when your niche has competitors flouting the rules left right and center and succeeding from it?
Link building and link “EARNING” is hard business. I know the old adage – build great content and links will come – but, in reality, the cost of building great content with powerful media to boot just increases the pressure of getting something back?
Let’s hope that one day Google’s model moves further away from links. YES we know – intent, landing page content is absolutely vital – but, let;’s face it, links still count.