Google’s Matt Cutts Explains Linking Practices That Annoy Him But Won’t Hurt Ranking

Matt Cutts at Google Talking Annoying Link Practices

When Google’s search quality master Matt Cutts talks about things that might effect website rankings, webmasters listen. Most of the time, the advice or rather “hints” that Cutts provides are useful in helping a site rank higher in Google. Today, however, a new video feature Cutts is just about linking practices that annoy him but ultimately have no effect on website placement rankings.

In a Google Webmaster Help video Matt Cutt starts by explaining the most annoying of link practices (bottom of post links):

“I’ll just say, for my personal preference, I really appreciate when there’s a link somewhere relatively close to the top of the article because I really kind of want to know when someone’s talking about it, you know, hey, go ahead and show me where I can read the original source or let me look up more information,” says Cutts. “There are a lot of blogs that will give one tiny little link all the way at the bottom of a big long story, and by that time, it just doesn’t seem like it’s quite as useful, but that’s just a personal preference. That’s not ranking advice as far as it goes.”

Cutts doesn’t end there. He also explains his hatred for sites that mention an original or helpful source but then fails to give a link to that source:

“The only other thing I hate – this is once again just personal – is whenever you’ve got a regular news report, whether it’s in a mainstream newspaper – New York Times, AP, whatever – and they say, ‘Blah Blah Blah said on a popular webmaster blog that blah blah blah,’ and they don’t link to the source,” he continues. “I mean, come on. Link to your sources, whether you’re a journalist, whether you’re a blogger, let people go and look at the original information themselves so that they can suss out what they think about whatever it is that you’re writing about. So if you just say, ‘Oh, it was discovered on a popular forum that blah blah blah,’ then we have to go look for it. That’s really annoying.”

Matt Cutts is quick to point out that those annoyances are not given for “ranking advice” but rather he shared his thoughts because websites are suppose to get and give credit where it is do.

As a multi-source aggregator we make it our goal to give credit where credit is due, and thankfully even many mainstream media websites have begun to aggregate stories from competitors while still sharing proper and transparent link love.

We talk a lot about an open web and nothing is more open then millions of bloggers, journalists, and general publications who realize that shared information with original source linking is a value added service for readers.

Now I feel awkward for not linking at the start of this article to the YouTube video Matt Cutts posted even though I embedded it. (*Blushes*)

Do you get annoyed by any certain web practices involving linking strategies?