Competitor Review & Backlink Removal Request

The great thing about being an online business is that life is never quiet. There’s always something that crops up that makes you think “odd” or “weird” or “if only I could reach through the screen and slap you round the chops with a large fish”.

Competitor Reviews Loquax – Oh Dear!

Kicking things off was a review of Loquax by a competitor. Just quickly, we list competitions on various sites around the web – from blogs to brands – and it’s free to use. The competitor (MyComps from Oxfordshire Press) does something similar but on a smaller scale and they charge for their service.

Naturally they’d prefer to get people to pay them for their service and so they “reviewed” Loquax in what I can only describe as an attempt to undermine our brand. In my opinion they’re trying to discredit us without actually knowing how we work. The “review” is badly structured and contains unsubstantiated claims! On one hand it’s quite funny and flattering that a competitor is that desperate, on the other it’s pretty annoying.

Obviously a competitor standing on your toes, especially your trademark’s toes, isn’t something to be taken lightly, and so legal advice has been sought. The problem with legal stuff is that it can cost a lot of money just to make people act reasonably – and there’s no guarantee of success anyway.

A full explanation can be found on the Loquax Blog – MyComps Reviews Loquax – What They Do & Don’t Tell You!.

Can You Remove That Backlink Please?

Whilst we’ve been trying to get a competitor to remove underhand content about Loquax, another site has been asking us to make some changes. It’s not our content that’s the problem though!

On our bingo news area of Loquax we had an article that quoted another bingo portal. We linked to the site with the site name as anchor text. Now I don’t understand SEO, but it was a surprise to get an email from an SEO consultancy saying that as their client had received a Google penalty they needed all backlinks to be removed.

This has got me totally perplexed!

It was a free link, not asked for, relevant, in context – in fact everything I’d have thought Google would have liked. Good for us and good for the site we’re linking to?

The SEO company doing the asking couldn’t explain their request – they just said it was a serious situation and needed it done. Sometimes it’s easier to be co-operative, so the links been removed. It’d have been nice to have an idea of why it was so important though.

I’d have thought having a relevant link on an on-topic site would be worth keeping. I’d also have thought that the SEO company would have been better off sorting out the penalty (and why the penalty happened)?

Perhaps someone who’s clever in SEO can shed some light?

3 Comments Competitor Review & Backlink Removal Request

  1. Dio June 4, 2011 at 6:58 pm

    One can only assume that the SEO agency caused the problem and don’t know how to fix it. Any SEO agency that would want a quality link like that removing frankly shouldn’t be calling themselves an SEO agency. Crazy.

  2. Fraser Edwards June 4, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Are you 100% certain the SEO agency work for this client? They don’t happen to work for a competitor…?

  3. Patrick Altoft June 5, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Agree with Fraser here, I have seen a few emails from agencies emailing all the sites linking to their clients competitors asking for the links to be taken down.

    Don’t rely on email addresses either, email headers can be forged to make you think the client is emailing. You need to ring the client direct on a proper number and speak to them as well as getting them to personally email you – or just don’t take the link down.


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