Link-building software is amazingly powerful when it comes to automating and streamlining your SEO campaigns.
But use it incorrectly or irresponsibly, and your site will drop from the rankings faster than the Titanic post-North Atlantic iceberg.
These programs can literally build tens of thousands of links in a week. But having tools like that is like having a loaded gun. Yes, you can hunt with it, but if you’re not careful you can also shoot yourself in the face!
Automated link-building software can have a place in your SEO campaigns... if used correctly. We’re not going to judge anyone and say you’re some Black Hat spammer if you use this method.
That’s just not realistic…
However, before you jump in and start firing off links like bullets at midnight during a Wild West New Year's Eve party, let’s go through what SEO link building software is exactly, the dangers of using it, what you can do to protect yourself and our product recommendations.
Link-Building Software Explained
While it might seem self explanatory, there’s a lot more to automated link-building software than the name might suggest.
Different software packages offer a variety of features but generally speaking, link-building software usually:
- Allows you to build links at PDF submission sites, article directories, web 2.0 platforms, social media sites, blogging sites, social bookmarking sites and others.
- Automatically sets up accounts at all of the different sites.
- Helps you submit “unique” content to each site by giving you the option to spin your content.
- Helps you avoid detection and deletion by the sites they are submitting links to through the use of proxies.
- Spreads out your link-building over time to avoid a giant influx of links.
Obviously, the biggest selling point here is that you save a whole heap of time. No more setting up accounts, verifying them, optimizing them, adding content and all of the other things associated with in-depth link-building.
The Dangers of Link-Building Software
Software like this can easily create more backlinks and accounts than you ever thought possible with a few clicks of a button. But more and bigger does not always mean better in SEO.
Some of the dangers of using automated link-builders are:
- High-Velocity/Volume Link-Building: When your site goes from 0 to 10,000 backlinks in a few days, you might get the wrong kind of attention from Google and the other search engines (ex: manual actions, “sandboxing,” deindexing, etc)
- Footprints: When Google updates its algorithm to improve organic search results, it often attacks a large group of sites that share similar attributes. When using automated link-builders, it’s easier to get caught in one of these sweeps because the software uses the same patterns and variables for its users. This has the potential to leave a large footprint that Google (and your competition) can easily identify.
- Content Quality: These programs typically use content spinning in order to avoid duplicate content issues. However, when not properly done, spun content can read like pure gibberish. While you may not be using it on your main site, junk content in your link-building system may throw up red flags.
- Identification: Building this many links with this many sites can easily trip spam filters. Your IP, cookies and other identifying features can be targeted and blocked.
Yes, there are some risks in using link-building programs that you need to be aware of.
Here’s what you can do to protect yourself and your site from an unwanted search engine backlash.
- Steer Clear: If you’re that worried about your site and backlinks that it’s keeping you up at night, then don’t use automated link-building software. No one is saying you have to dance just because the band is playing.
- Use Proxies: You’ll want to invest in a solid proxy list or a VPN program like HMA to keep your identity clear.
- Take Your Time: Rome wasn’t built in a day. If you try to throw 10,000 links at your site, you’re going to have a bad time. Spread your campaigns out over weeks to make things look more natural.
- Diversify: When making all of these links, make sure you’re not over-optimizing titles, anchor text and other on-page SEO factors. Generally speaking, you want to only target your keywords with about 10-15 percent of your links. The rest should be long-tail variations, your URL, your brand name and general keywords ("click here," "read more," etc).
- Use Buffers: Unless you are ready to invest heavily in antacids and anxiety medications, don’t send all of these links to your main “money site.” Create web 2.0’s and other sites that will act like buffers for your main site. If any site takes the fall and gets de-indexed, it won’t be your main money-maker.
Link-Building Software Recommendations
If you feel like you’re ready to take on the risk and responsibility of using software like this, then you’re probably wondering which ones are worth your time and which ones aren’t.
There are a fair number of these programs out there but, in our opinion, the best link-building software programs are:
SeNuke XCR is the “household name” when it comes to automated link-building and definitely the first place you should look.
The platform is extremely robust, offers all the bells and whistles you could ever hope for and is supported by a giant community of experienced users and knowledgeable staff. It’s so widely used that you can even find freelance marketers to run campaigns for you without buying the software yourself.
But nothing is perfect, folks. The drawbacks to this platform are:
- Cost: Prices go for around $125/month
- Availability: If you don’t want to pay the monthly fee, they offer lifetime licenses but only from time to time.
- Complexity: Yes, beginners can get by just fine but this platform has so many features it’s going to take you awhile and some work to get things humming like a pro.
If you’re thinking about using an automated link-building system but don’t want to jump into the deep end with SeNuke XCR, then Ultimate Demon should be on your radar.
It offers most of the same functions and is pretty user friendly. It’s cheaper too: $49/month or a one-time fee of $349.
The one drawback is that it’s not as widely used as SeNuke so there is not the same support community out there.
Personally, I have never used GSA’s software, but several marketers I know and trust swear by it.
It’s a $99 one-time fee and definitely the cheapest out of the major link-building systems out there. It also operates without having to connect to databases like Ultimate Demon and SeNuke, which many marketers like.
Do You Really Need Link Builders?
All too often novice Internet marketers start thinking that if they don’t have the latest tool or system they won’t be successful.
“Oh, if I only had this crazy new link-builder then I’d be making $100,000 a month in SEO like the big guys (claim they do)!”
However, a lot of the time these link-builders are so advanced and can build so many links that they are not needed and should not be used by beginner SEOs. As we discussed earlier, you can do a lot of damage by building too many links too fast to your site.
If you are just starting out, have a limited budget or won’t spend the time and effort to learn how to properly use these tools, then you should just pass. You can do a lot more harm than good.
You don’t necessarily have to dive in headfirst with link building. Use Fiverr, Upwork, other freelance sites and online marketing forums to find experienced providers that can run a couple of campaigns for you.
Check out their history, get recommendations if possible and make sure they are building links responsibly. If their work pays off for your rankings, then maybe this is something you will want to invest more money and your time into.