Matt Cutts Video about How Google Calculates Paid Links

5 Ways Google Calculates Paid Links

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Google head of search spam Matt Cutts has published a video discussion that has narrated How Google determine that your Website containing paid link or not. Some webmaster think that how is possible of some others think Google take decision based on assumption which is absolutely wrong.

In Matt cuts video he has clearly stated some major factor for determining paid link of any website. Basically we can split the factors into five criteria and those are as follows-
  • Explicit or direct Link Sales
  • Close To The Value Of Money
  • Is it Gift or a Loan
  • What is the Intention Of Audience
  • Is it surprising or not

Explicit or Incredibly Clear Link Sales

There are many link seller out there who sell link in exchange of money. That means link is selling explicitly and directly for money or incentives. And obviously this is most common paid link which can detect by Google easily by measuring far or distance.

Matt Cutts said.
"Ninety-nine percent of the time it's abundantly clear that these are links that are being bought and paid and sold and all that sort of stuff."

There are a factor that Matt Cutts explain that if the company take out the person and buy a pizza or bear for you and expecting link instead of that.

Close To The Value Of Money

Secondly Google apply another technique that is how close to the value of money. May be we are not clear about this. Anyway for example, you have purchased some product from shop and after payment they have given a coupon for using in next purchase. However here coupon is close to the money because you easily convert the coupon into money by using this.

Buying beer or dinner for you and you will write content after 5 or 6 month, Google doesn’t worry about this.

Is it Gift or a Loan

This is another factor that Google use to determine whether it is paid link or not. Suppose you have given a car to your friend for a short time not forever. So it doesn’t affect anything but if you give the car forever then it will close to paid link or gift not loan.

Matt Cutts said. "So imagine, for example, that somebody loaned out a car for someone to try out for a week versus giving them a car. There's a big difference there."

What is the Intention of Audience?

Paid link is depend on intention. Suppose you are providing free hosting space for website for rapid spreading your brand image then it is not bad but if you expecting link instead of hosting place then the intention will be bad. So Google identify the intention of link and finally determine whether the link is paid or not.


Google’s Matt Cutts discusses with an example that if a free trial of a product being given. And the intention isn't that they are going to be giving links in exchange for trial. Rather after using trial the person may interested to purchase the product and tell about the product to others.

Is it surprising or not?

According to Matt Cutts the final criteria is the reporter or blogger be surprised? For example, if you are a movie blogger and you have got free access to a movie to write a review and this not surprising for the blogger. But instead of movie access you are given free car or laptop for writing about the movie that would be a surprise.

Matt Cutts also said that not only the above manipulative techniques will get penalize but also Google reserve the right to take action against any other manipulative or abusive techniques which violate Google's guidelines.

For details about the released video by Matt Cutts you may watch the video from below-

In conclusion Google’s Matt Cutts tried to clarify the factors regarding paid link and they will be determine algorithmically or manually whether it is paid link or not. And obviously out there a big penalty waiting for paid link containing website.
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