Link profile is the study of which websites contain a back link to your business's website and what anchor text it uses. Anchor text is the words within the actual link. Backlinks are the bane of the internet, however until Google can create a new way of determining a website's authority (and hence index score or page position) it is here to stay.
There are many schools of thought, the majority wrong. There are a number of different organisations that will give you statistics on the quantity and quality of you backlinks. Unfortunately each one will give you some half-truths and the expression of wood for trees comes into its own.
Good question, well for a start they are all different. The most important source of information is Google Webmaster Tools. If a link is listed here, then it has been counted positively by Google. As for the rest, well unless they own search engines you wish to rank highly in they can be largely ignored.
Google mentions spammy links in its own developers pages (under Serving results). However we have done our own research over four years involving both our own 3200 websites and our own organically built network of webmasters Gates 360.
We have tested the concept of toxic links. Our findings are that Google treats links as either positive or neutral. There is no such a thing as a spammy link.
The reason for this is simple.
Imagine a hypothetical spammy link, see the website content and imagery, Perhaps you picture web pages with no content, thousands of backlink, just junk and noise.
Now let us add all of your competitors to this site and create a 100 sites just like it, spammy sites are cheap to churn out after all. Under current thinking this would result in all of your competitors being thrown out of Google's index leaving your site the clear (and only) winner.
Of course this strategy would not be fair. It would mean that Google would be handing link strength away from sites of merit to the worst types of sites on the internet, exactly the opposite of the system it adopted in 1998.
There is however incorrect use of anchor text to consider which is part of Google's recent updates. To discover who had been "buying links" and who had not was a dilemma for Google.
Without access to bank accounts could it be proved. The ingenious solution Google came up with was to get website owners to admit to buying links or using an SEO company to manipulate their index.
By sending out emails and dropping sites out of the index, Google hoped that webmasters would admit to their 'link buying' and remove bought links - and it worked! Read more on penalties
Our research shows that backlinks have been downgraded and Google has added more weight to a site's content and quality, rather than on external off page criteria, It is the right move and changes like these are what makes Google the best search engine in the world.
What to do; change your focus away from link building and external factors and look to your website's content; the secret to SEO success lies within your website. If you have been dropped out of the index or your website has dropped to page 10 from page 1 then there are solutions that can assist your site to climb back, however it is a SLOW process and companies who promise instant results should be avoided.
How and what to do? Speak to Benedict, perhaps we can help.