Bernard Huang

The use of Backlinks in SEO

This article is written by Nardine B. M’barek, a Contributor Author at Startup Istanbul.

Bernard Huang is a well-known entrepreneur who is also the co-founder of Mushi Labs, founded in 2015. Added to that, he is the co-founder of Clearscope in 2016. He also was on the 500 Startups distro team. They helped 500 Startups’ portfolio companies. Previously, he was the co-founder of ‘Food-By-People’ in 2013, as well as other companies. He graduated from The University of Texas at Austin.

Mr. Bernard Huang is an entrepreneur, who has been active in the field of entrepreneurship and business for at least 9 years.  He was present during 2015 with us under the program Etohum Kampi and delivered a lecture that deals with growth hacks. One major matter that he talked about was SEO; now we all know how important SEO is, but the most crucial thing is to actually know how to properly do it and benefit from it.

Mr. Huang had a hypothesis stating that links are important in SEO, and he wanted to test three different things; if he bought a pack of links from a shady site, then how long would it take to affect his rankings. The second thing that he wanted to test was the chances that Google would actually punish him for doing so, and last but not least, in case Google ends up punishing him, how long is that period of time during which he was able to purchase links. 

What Mr. Huang did was visiting BlackHatWorld, which is basically a forum where people talk about Black Hat SEO; where you can find ways that you could use to hack the system, where you also could find a marketplace for link building. This marketplace would look really shady. Mr. Huang bought around 10 thousand links and directed them towards their website. What he wanted to know was if buying links actually have an effect on the traffic. 

The links that Mr. Huang bought were acquired around the end of May, or June to July. He bought two link packages there. When viewing Google Analytics, he was able to notice that buying those links actually increased their organic traffic growth significantly from the end of April to Mid October where they noticed that the search engine rankings dropped abruptly. The reason behind this sudden drop was that Penguin released an algorithmic update that punished people who bought backlinks. What we can conclude is that buying links works at first, until you get busted and punished for doing that! 

If you get punished and need to recover your rankings, then you need to first figure out what the backlinks that a random person pointed to you are. In order to do that, Mr. Huang uses a tool called ‘AHREFS’, it basically identifies the number of backlinks, and from where these links are coming from, and even export a list that would state all their sources. After you get this list, you can then disavow them using a disavowing link, you would create a text file through which you would state that you are not responsible for these links and that you do not have any relationship with it.

Another idea that they did was redesigning the website that would actually focus on providing users with good user experience. As a reason to these two methods, they were able to recover their rankings and grow their organic traffic even more than it used to be before purchasing the links.


─ September 28, 2019