Links: Think Magnets, Not Hay

Gyi Tsakalakis
March 29, 2011

link-farming.jpgIn light of Google's recent "Farmer's Update", farming themes have been running rampant throughout the online marketing community. So I figure, what's one more.

If you've ever spent any time online (or even using email), someone has probably told you that you need links to your website in order to "rank better in google."  Next, they probably tried to sell you some links.  Sound familiar? What they aren't telling you is that not all links are created equal.

I have always liked to think of links to a website as votes for that website in an unequal democracy. Each link to your web pages casts a vote for that page. However, a vote from is not the same as a vote from In fact, if you use Google's PageRank as a metric for determining the power of a link-vote, the scale is logarithmic (think Richter scale).

Link Farmers

Unfortunately, many legal web marketing services sell links like hay. They will say something like, "get 100+ PR 3+ links to your website for $100."  In other words, they are selling links in quantity. Of course, when you push them to tell you where these links will be coming from, there is either no response or we begin to travel down the mysterious rabbit-hole of jargon that many legal SEO service providers will concoct to obfuscate their scam.

Further, some of these "link farmers" will actually groom websites for the purpose of selling links.  Not to mention that this is a clear breach of Google's webmaster guidelines, it just doesn't work very well. So, at best, you spent a lot of money for these completely worthless links, and at worse, you spent a lot of money to get "kicked-out" of Google (yes, that can happen).

Link Magnets

Instead of building or paying for links like bushels of hay, you should think of ways to attract links to your website like a magnet. And while there are several ways to attract links, there is really no better way than to simply write something that is interesting, useful, and linkable.

Now admittedly, this is often more easily said than done, which is why it actually works. You see, Google's main goal is to organize information on the web based upon relevance to your search query and popularity.  And when we say popularity, we mean true popularity, as in other people who have websites (or administrative access to websites), who actually link to your website through a citation or endorsing link.

SEO for attorneys is much more about attracting quality links by developing, publishing, and publicizing valuable pieces of content than it is raking link-hay into bushels.

Author: Gyi Tsakalakis is now taking your questions and socializing at: gchat: gyi.tsakalakis | @gyitsakalakis | LinkedIn | Facebook. Hire me at AttorneySync.

Photo By: (

Gyi Tsakalakis
Co-Founder of AttorneySync
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Let's Discuss Your Growth

Helping law firms grow profitably with digital marketing and can prove it.

Barry Conybeare

We are so impressed with AttorneySync and their digital marketing services. We started with an audit of our digital presence and hired them thereafter. Fixes to the website and other platforms quickly followed and we have seen a substantial increase in online traffic, new client calls, and new client contracts. Strongly recommend AttorneySync!

Let's Talk

How can we help?

More From Our Blog

June 8, 2023
On Local Law Firm SEO Rank Tracking and Reporting

Over the years, law firm prospects have sent us reports from just about all of our competitors. Unfortunately, even today, some law firm marketing agencies still mislead their clients via "reporting." One particularly egregious example comes in the form of ranking reports. Which prompted this LinkedIn post. To my surprise, I received a lot of […]

Read More
June 7, 2023
On Attribution

John Wanamaker supposedly said "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half." In an an effort to figure out "what half is working," attribution was born. Coupled with a transition from traditional, offline ads to digital media, attribution became the holy grail for analyzing advertising spends. But […]

Read More
March 22, 2023
I asked ChatGPT to Recommend a Personal Injury Law Firm

I recently asked ChatGPT, "What are some of the top personal injury law firms in Chicago?? Actually, first I ask "who are some of the top personal injury lawyers in Chicago?" ChatGPT couldn't handle that one, so I modified the prompt. ChatGPT listed five very well-known firms downtown. Can you guess the other four? That's […]

Read More
February 17, 2023
My Take on Google Search's Guidance on AI-Generated Content & Law Firm SEO

If you're like me, you have some degree of AI, ChatGBT, Bard, exhaustion. Now don't get me wrong, this is stuff is remarkable and is changing, well, a lot. But before you hook up the ChatGPT API to your WordPress API and crank out 10,000 pages, here are a few things to think about. Let's […]

Read More
February 16, 2023
Google Adds New SEO Best Practices for Links

If you know me, you know my opinions about links and SEO advice from Google. If you don't, here's the TL;DR: Meh, links! Meaning, all things being equal, links still remain a competitive difference maker for ranking. Take Google's SEO advice with several grains of salt. Google has no economic incentive to help your site […]

Read More
February 1, 2023
Authenticity & Engagement

The best marketing advice I can give you is to be authentic. Of course, you don't find that very helpful in terms of meeting your growth goals. So, you might decide to game the system. As I'm writing this, one of the more popular ways to gain the system is to pay for engagement. This […]

Read More
January 19, 2023
ChatGPT for Legal Marketing

The following post was written by ChatGPT. ChatGPT, developed by OpenAI, is a state-of-the-art language model that can generate human-like text based on a given prompt or context. This technology has the potential to revolutionize the way that businesses, including law firms, market themselves to potential clients. One way that a law firm could use […]

Read More
May 26, 2022
SEO Expectations for Law Firms

How long does SEO take? When can I expect to see results? What results should I expect to see? These are all reasonable questions that we field from lawyers every day. And, like many legal answers, the answer is: It depends. Yes, I know that's not the answer you wanted. But it's the most honest […]

Read More
May 6, 2022
Who Should Do Marketing?

And how much time should they spend doing it? I recently had the privilege of chatting with Tyson, Jim, and Conrad for an upcoming episode of The Maximum Lawyer Podcast. If you're not familiar with The Maximum Lawyer community, you should definitely check it out. Jim asked a really great question about who should do […]

Read More

Let's Discuss

Questions or comments? Let's discuss on social!
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram