Matt at Blogging Fingers claims that Google Bans TNX Link Buyers. And he presents a pretty good case for it. I think I’ll wait to see if anyone else has a similar issue before worrying too much.
If I had to guess, I would say that the reason behind it all is the super fast acquisition of links. It’s probably a pretty fair bet to say that a site that gains several hundred links in a matter of several days is buying links. It does happen with sites that get hit by Digg or some other similar site, but as a general rule, it’s link buying.
Part of this is an issue with TNX as well. Their system is set up with very little control over what sites your site gets links on. You get to pick a very generic category and then are at the mercy of the TNX engine to place links. And frankly, from experience, I’d say that engine is a first come first served sort of thing. The links are almost never truly relevant.
Take Blogging Fingers for instance. What category would you put it in? Probably something along the lines of SEO or Blogging, or Entrepreneur. There is a category for Marketing, Advertising, SEO, Web Development, Hosting. Pretty close match right? Well, that depends. Suppose you’re a marketer for bands. Yes, musical bands. There is a Software, Music category, but you’re a marketer, not a band. You put your site in the Marketing category. You then get links on sites like Blogging Fingers. Not even close to relevant.
Further, if you put it in the Software, Music category, you might get a few more relevant links, but you’ll also get links on MP3 sites, ringtone sites, and other digital music sites. If you’re looking for bands to market, those are probably not the places you want links.
Of course, if all you’re looking for is a little PR to trickle down to you, none of that matters. But if you’re looking for links that aren’t going to get you banned from Google, you’ll need to be very careful on where your links go and how quickly.