GoDaddy Linking Scheme

Last week SEO and WP veteran Joost de Valk outted GoDaddy (no link for you!) for tricking customers with a nasty little footer link scheme leveraging client web sites.

Sound familiar? It should – this is the same practice we caught Teleflora doing to their florists a few months back. When confronted with the practice TF slightly modified the behaviour to seemingly address florist concerns, though they did not remove the links to Teleflora.com

So why does this announcement from Joost matter to florists?

As more and more florists are fleeing Wire Service hosted web sites many have turned to the seemingly low-cost options provided by GoDaddy, including their Web Site Tonight product that Joost discusses. While these are already pretty low-grade sites, florists using GoDaddy should also be aware of this new twist that’s leveraging their hard work to promote another company.

To recap why this is a problem: Every link from any page on your site sends a certain amount of “link juice” (viewed as a vote or endorsement) to the page on the end of that link. The stronger the sending page, the more “juice” the receiving page gets. If a florist is working hard building links and credibility for their site a portion of that hard work is siphoned off by the hosting company. When that company is also a competitor, this situation is even worse (imagine you had another flower shop next door who was jacking your electricity for their cooler – not cool!).

Despite what certain “industry professionals” have said in response to our article in September, these types of links do work, and they do benefit the receiving site – as proven by Joost. So, if you have a team member who says that links only matter when the page strength score of the linking site is higher than the receiving site, you might need to send them back to SEO school :)

GoDaddy Linking Scheme by

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9 thoughts on “GoDaddy Linking Scheme

  1. Long ago, I had a website hosted with Godaddy. I found them to be the WORST. Customer service was beyond rude. I would never ever go back to having GoDaddy host any website for me, even if it was for free.

  2. I just have to shake my head… like they thought nobody would notice?

    Florists beware… find a trusted site design and hosting company, you’ll save money in the long run!

  3. I do not use godaddy, but yes i had a similar problem with ftd that actually set up my site New Port Richey Florist and when i tried to move it to Hot Rock Hosting they kept my domain name… now i have had to rebuild the site and get a whole new name so basically i did all my marketing for them… Is ftd now broker the domain names???

    • FTD does register the domain name, but all you have to do is request that they transfer it to your control and they will relinquish it.

      We have migrated many florists from Wire Service sites, and we’ve never had any extended problems in getting the domain released.

  4. It’s not easy to get around this link scheme so the only solution is to get out of the system. I don’t really trust Go Daddy because of their bad reputation based from multiple feedback from their past customers. There are a lot of better hosting companies who can accommodate florist so there is no need to panic.

    • I agree, Go Daddy seems like a very shady company to me and this just confirms it. Do they really think they would be able to get away with something like this on the internet?

  5. I never really trusted GoDaddy. They have a lot of advertising but they always seemed off. This is the first I’ve actually heard of them doing something bad, but it doesn’t surprise me at all.

  6. Wow,well i’m glad I never went with GoDaddy for hosting then. That is pretty unethical of them,and rather stunning. I never did quite trust their “McHosting” services. I guess that was a good feeling I had in my gut.

  7. GoDaddy is one of those companies that seem to be doing everything they can to make money. They buy links, put hidden links where they can and use whatever black hat tactic they can squeeze in. I think they are one of the worst companies out there no matter the industry. I glad someone outed them and I can only hope more people see GD for what it truly is: a company designed to make profit from any means possible.

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