Digital Insights

6 Reasons why Link Building Just got More Expensive


Published: January 10, 2014

If you’ve been trying to incorporate link building into your search engine optimization strategy, recently chances are you’ve noticed that it’s been getting a little bit more expensive. If you haven’t noticed, you might want to pay attention to some of the ways in which link building is becoming more costly to help you create business strategies that will help you save time and money. Some of the reasons that the budgets for link building are listed below.

Quality Over Quantity

It’s incredibly important to focus on quality when you engage in link building. In the past, this wasn’t so important. Prior to Penguin one would pay an overseas resources a few hundred dollars to build them thousands of links and it worked. However, over time search engine algorithms became more attuned to the fact that most of these links were junk links that amounted to nothing more than spam. Now that search engines are smarter, links have to be of a higher quality and placed on high quality sites, which can cost time and/or money.

Time Itself

Time itself is expensive. The old adage that time is money is very true, and it becomes extremely apparent in the world of link building as more and more time is required to do it correctly. Finding quality sites, earning links, creating content you can link to, and so on cost many business owners a lot of time that they didn’t have to spend before.


Link building schemes are still rampant, and there are some who use black hat SEO techniques to drive traffic to their website by posting links all over the Internet to their site. Unfortunately, some well-meaning individuals who are simply not well-versed in search engine optimization can also come across these penalties if they are not careful about how they link to their site on the Internet. These penalties, many of which did not exist until recent years, are another reason that link building has become expensive.

Expertise Required

Given all of the above reasons that link building is so much more difficult now than it used to be, it follows that you almost need to have expertise in search engine optimization and link building professional in order to do it correctly and avoid being penalized. For most business owners, this means that the most efficient way to link builders to pay an expert to do it for them. Again, this is a cost to did not have to be incurred in years past.

Google’s Algorithms

Any website owner or marketer who is familiar with search engine optimization tends to cringe at the phrase “algorithm update”. Google seems to change their algorithm every time website owners have just updated their sites to comply with the last shift, and when Google Penguin came around, cheap links became almost unavailable. With one algorithm shift, it became more difficult and more expensive to link build, and some suspect that future algorithm changes will do much of the same.

Content Marketing

In a way, it could be argued that content marketing has made link building more expensive as well. Since content marketing, as far as its essential part of search engine optimization, is a relatively new development, up until recently there was less to link to. But now, since pages and pages of high-quality content are required in order for a website to be considered valuable by search engines, more high quality links have to be included. Since more links have to be included, more link building has to be done, which is bound to cause business owners to spend more time and money on link building regardless of the method they choose.

The above six reasons may help business owners understand way link building has become more expensive. However, link building still remains an essential part of search engine optimization that should not be ignored. Whether you hire a professional or simply invest more time is up to you, but learning about the basics of link building and trying to keep up with the changes in search engine optimization can help save you time and money in the long run as you can avoid penalties and wasted time from doing it incorrectly.