Google has published a new video on the company’s Webmaster Help YouTube channel, in which Matt Cutts, Head of Search Spam at Google, allays fears over nofollow links.
In the short video, Cutts explains that in the vast majority of cases nofollow links will not adversely affect search rankings. This is good news, as penalties for nofollow links is something many webmasters had lost sleep over. But the good news was tempered with a warning.
While in most cases links that are nofollowed won’t bring rankings down, Cutt’s explained that if a webmaster was mass spamming on a large scale, the search engine would take manual action whether the links in question were nofollowed or not.
This is an interesting case since many site owners now fear reproach for their linking practices, but the message from Google remains that if you are working within acceptable parameters your ranking will not be affected.
Andrew Donaldson, Director of HitSearch, said: "Ultimately, Google want to stop you cheating and clean up the SERP’s; which is 100% the right thing to do. There has been a lot of concern within the SEO world about how Penguin and Panda updates have changed the SERP landscape in a negative way. But the underlining message is: don’t look for shortcuts.
"Instead build organic traffic to your site naturally via clever and interesting content creation and propagation. Do this and you’ll have no problems ranking highly; but cut corners and that’s when your problems will start".
You can check out the video for yourself right here:
So what do you think? Does this give you peace of mind when building your link profile? Does it actually help negative SEO, as long as it’s relatively stealthy? Let us know how you feel in the comments below.