Can I use varied SEO services on Fiverr to actually improve my pagerank?
April 2, 2013 7:47 AM   Subscribe is full of people offering various sorts of SEO services (Writing articles, running SeNuke xCR, creating link wheels, keyword analysis, all sorts of crazy stuff). Many of these people have thousands of positive reviews. Is this all garbage, or can I pay $50 to a bunch of people and significantly improve my search rankings?

I currently have a PR4 site with some really high quality backlinks, and I'm on the first page of Google for many of my target keywords, but not quite at the top. If I can pay someone and thereby bump myself up a few positions on Google's results, it'd be worth it. If that might result in my site getting sandboxed, then I'd rather not.
posted by anonymoose to Computers & Internet (17 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Even if you didn't care about Google's policy that prohibits buying backlinks for the intent of bumping your page rank, there's always the risk of getting bad backlinks, e.g. backlinks from sites that are in no way related to yours, losing the backlinks after a couple of days, etc.

From around the web: Good Ideal to Buy Backlinks on Fiverr? | Buying backlinks from
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:06 AM on April 2, 2013

There are plenty of people willing to take your money for SEO services that don't really deliver. Because it can be such a confusing and complex topic, people who want a quick fix often end up paying for smoke and mirrors.

Why is great SEO so expensive?
posted by Ouisch at 8:08 AM on April 2, 2013

In the short term, if you can wade through the sharks and con artists, hit a point in time before an internet 'trick' is discovered by the community at large, and are lucky, yes maybe. Long term, google has a huge staff constantly closing down 'tricks'.

(I know it's off topic but the answer is good searchable information)
posted by sammyo at 8:12 AM on April 2, 2013

can I pay $50 to a bunch of people and significantly improve my search rankings?

Google page rank being as valuable as it is, if anyone on fiverr could actually move you to the top of the list for $50, why on earth would they be on Fiverr and not consulting for $250 an hour?

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

90% of SEO is garbage and snake oil. The rest is expensive. Don't waste your money.
posted by toomuchpete at 8:32 AM on April 2, 2013 [3 favorites]

Yes, it's garbage. Apply free-market logic to this: if there were a cheap and easy way to do SEO, everyone would use it and it would cease to work.

Success in the free market comes from hard work and high quality, and that applies just as much to this as to anything else. Shortcuts are only going to work temporarily, if they work at all.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:55 AM on April 2, 2013

SEO is an important, low-cost and measurable way to get found by your customers and stand apart from your competitors, and as such is a valuable tool. You should definitely be proactive about SEO.

Most companies do not employ SEO best practices, so if you do get serious about it and work with a serious agency, you will see results.

However, Fiverr is not the way to go. The SEO tactics they are using are either old (buying links) or useless.

It may be difficult to rank at the top of Search for certain keywords, which many be highly competitive.

As well, PageRank is kind of a useless indicator, since it doesn't really measure how easy it is for your customers to find you. We look at lots of different things, including PR, such as Domain Authority, Domain age, inbound links, on-page SEO (which has evolved considerably over the past 18 months, and continues to evolve) and the actual technical attributes of your site.

There are always improvements to be made, but Fiverr is not the place to find those improvements.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:37 AM on April 2, 2013

By the way, there are SEO "best practices", the most basic, as an example, would be using Robots.txt.

There's also page titles, h1's, body, interlinking etc etc. These are all best practices that Google has indicated are "signals".

So don't listen to uninformed people (who likely just build things but don't have to ever worry or think about monetizating and ROI) who call SEO "tricks" and "snake oil".
posted by KokuRyu at 9:41 AM on April 2, 2013

Content is king.
posted by humboldt32 at 9:43 AM on April 2, 2013

Response by poster: I've seen a lot of chatter about writing a high quality article, spinning it and submitting it all over the place with backlinks (or backlinks to sites which link to you). Is that garbage as well?
posted by anonymoose at 9:46 AM on April 2, 2013

I ordered one of those gigs once just to check it out, and noticed the seller promised a free second gig of your choice if you left positive feedback. That might be one reason for the high ratings you see, not the quality of the gig itself.
posted by Soliloquy at 10:30 AM on April 2, 2013

I've seen a lot of chatter about writing a high quality article, spinning it and submitting it all over the place with backlinks (or backlinks to sites which link to you). Is that garbage as well?

Yes, absolutely. Article spinning has been dead since about 2010, when Google changed its algorithm.

Backlinks are still very important, but straight link-exchanges are also frowned upon. However, NAP listings (there are dozens and dozens and dozens of legitimate directories, depending on your vertical) are very, very, very important, and it is critical to ensure your NAP information (name, address, phone) is standardized.

Content does drive SEO these days, and it can't be content that has keywords shoehorned into the copy, but has to be meaningful, relevant, useful information for customers, which is what Google's range of signals is really trying to triangulate.

The most basic thing you can do after on-page SEO is write weekly blog posts that are useful, since Google prefers sites with "fresh" content; if you have fresh content you have a better chance of ranking higher for specific keywords.

But it makes no sense (as some of our clients have insisted) to outsource content creation to oDesk or eLance or the Philippines or India.

It's also important to engage with your audience via the most relevant social media channel (ie, focus your efforts on Facebook or Twitter or whatever), and use content as the backbone of engagement.

The Catch-22 is that Google cares most about G+ signals, but hardly anyone uses G+.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:43 AM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

Instead of article spinning, we focus on getting our clients guest blog posts. Much higher quality links.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:44 AM on April 2, 2013

Short Answer: Maybe

SEO is a catch-all term for Search Engine Optimization. The steps you need to take are as follows. I think you should also look into Elance as opposed to Fiver. You can find many experience freelance workers there. My company uses article writers and other experts from Elance.

1) Keyword Research: This could potentially be done by someone who has experience on Fiver or a similar site. You need to really look at what you want on your website as far as keywords.

2) Implement Keywords: You can implement these keywords in articles, however if your site lacks keywords in the title tags/metatags/alt tags, then keyword rich articles won't do you much good. That being said, keyword rich articles should also be between 3% and 5% keyword density.

3) Linking: Recent Google updates (Panda and Penguin) have really made having a ton of low-page rank links coming into your site a bad thing. That being said you need to distribute you content on a few, high ranking sites for referral traffic.

Get an SEO toolbar or add-on for your web browser that can show you page rank.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Get your Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ rolling. These have HUGE pagerank and brining links from these can increase your page rank.

You also need to share content that will bring them to your website, which is where good articles can come in. That way they have something to click in each update that sends them to your website, and not just to the homepage. Most people won't click your URL from your Facebook, as they probably got to your Facebook from your website and not the other way around.

Articles Sites: Good article sites include Ezine and Go Articles.
Guest Writing: Get networking with high-ranked blogs in your same area and ask if you can guest write, allowing you another place to receive referral traffic.
Press Release Sites: Find high ranked press release sites to distribute news-worthy content.

4) Webmaster Tools and Analytics: You said your site is a PR4, so I'm guessing you are following your analytics and traffic, however get an XML sitemap submitted to Google through Webmaster Tools. That can greatly increase getting found in search.

If after re-examining all of these things that you currently have on your PR4 site, you find that you are fully doing all of them and there is no room for improvement, then you should also look at your competition. What may they be doing that you're not?

My Experience: I do this for a living. Director of Client Marketing for an internet marketing startup.
posted by Crystalinne at 11:53 AM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

So don't listen to uninformed people (who likely just build things but don't have to ever worry or think about monetizating and ROI) who call SEO "tricks" and "snake oil".

You should also be weary of people whose livelihood is tied up in people believing in SEO and paying for services to perform it.

That said: regardless of what you call it, paying attention to your search rankings is a good idea and finding people/companies who know how to structure content in a way that is easily digested, understood, and indexed by the search engines is good business. But if someone is selling you "tricks" and "secrets" to SEO, they're almost certainly full of shit.

Over all, you're probably looking for people like Crystalinne. Those sorts of high-value marketing folks aren't giving away their services for $5 to anyone who will take it.
posted by toomuchpete at 12:05 PM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: The two links mentioned above: " Good Ideal to Buy Backlinks on Fiverr?" "Buying backlinks from" both mention that "Social Bookmarking" services, "Blogposts/Reviews," video testimonials, link pyramids/wheels and a few that manually post to a handful of high PR sites. What say you folks to those types of services?
posted by anonymoose at 12:42 PM on April 2, 2013

Social Bookmarking" services

Very generally speaking, not so useful for SEO. This is because the links don't have much meaning if anyone (or any robot) can post them. There are exceptions to the rule, though. Posting NAP to directories is one exception.


This is pretty important, so long as the blog that is linking you is recognized as a quality site by Google (eg, no paid links, not posting duplicate/scraped copy, not promoting itself using black/grey hat SEO, is relevant to your business, etc etc). In fact, for linkbuilding, we devote most of our time to getting links on blogs and other websites. It is very, very time consuming to do well, and is similar to what a traditional PR company would have done in the days of print media

video testimonials

Video SEO is a good idea, but there is a technical element to it (video SEO optimization) that someone on Fiverr will not likely be able to help with. So you can rank in Search with optimized videos, but, then again, videos are primarily supposed to be content. Are videos relevant to your target audience? Can you help inform or entertain with a quality product? At this stage, should you focus on videos, or are there other, more basic priorities to address first?

link pyramids/wheels

Very bad and Google will punish punish punish you for this. So 2004!

and a few that manually post to a handful of high PR sites.

Once again, PageRank is just one "signal", but not the most important one. Is the site relevant? What is the Domain Authority? How old is it? How many pages link to it? What kind of pages link to it? Social activity?

That said, you can pay to have a press release circulate through one of the paid services, and that can range from free to a happy medium of $100, all the way to $500 for one of the more respected PR news release agencies.

However, someone has to write the damn thing first and optimize for SEO.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:42 PM on April 2, 2013

KokuRyu has it right, but there is one thing he hasn't mentioned: Google's algorithms have been increasingly rewarding/penalizing sites based on how fast they load of late, apparently. So not only should the actual page structure (in terms of the actual HTML) be well-formed, but if the site loads slowly (tons of offsite javascript gewgaws from Facebook and Twitter and so on are a common problem here), then you're hurting yourself.

A quick way to test page load speed (and points of slowdown) (there are many) are to use Pagespeed or Yslow, both available as addons to Firebug.

Your best way to optimize your search engine visibility is to learn and follow best practices in general. It's a lot of work. For page speed, Google itself has many helpful tips.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:34 PM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

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