Tiered Link Building: White Hat or Black Hat?


David  McSweeney of top5seo.co.uk shared a post on this topic, he also shared his views on Matthew Woodward (Matthewwoodward.co.uk) and how Matt’s tactics are embracing white hat SEO.

tiered link buildingMatt’s tutorials are unfortunately concentrating more on black hat SEO. David said in his post.

David shared his post after Matt’s recent post where he said that Tiered Link Building Has Changed In 2014.

Against Matt’s tiered link building tutorial David shared his tiered link building tactic. Which I think has more sense than Matt’s tiered link building tutorial. (Why? Will tell you later in this post)

Note: For those who think link building is dead.

Before going deep into these two (David and Matt’s) posts lets first understand what is tiered link building?

Tiered link building is a tactic where you build links to pages or sites which linked to your money site. For instance you submit 10 guest posts to build links, to increase quality of these 10 guest posts you build links to them (10 guest posts), either by sharing it on social media, creating web2.0 pages or writing another guest post for them and again to increase link quality of these links you  do blog commenting or any other link building tactic.

In a simple way.

Tier 1: 6 websites pointing to your money site.

Tier 2: 10 websites pointing to 6 websites.

Tier 3: 10,000 links pointing to 10 websites.

Now the question, is it a black hat or white hat?

What is black hat and white hat?

According to me, anything that is against Google’s TOS then it’s a black hat technique. Getting links from directory sites was practiced for years but now it’s a black hat tactic.

No, this is not the answer for your question. I knew. If you ask this question to Google they say it’s a black hat. If you ask some SEO experts like Matthew Woodward they may white hat (has they’re recommending it).

The Advanced Guide to Link Building – Neil Patel

Neil Patel of Quicksprout.com says – “No guide to link building would be complete without at least touching on a few grey hat strategies. And while some these stretch the limits of Google’s TOS (or outright violate them) you may have the risk tolerance for this kind of approach.”

Here is the tiered link building strategy of Neil Patel.

Coming back to David of top5seo.co.uk

A White Hat Way to Build Tiered Links – David McSweeney

To build links to Tier 1 or Tier 2 David says you no need to build spam links, instead include guest posting and social media in your tiered link building tactic.


1. You publish a guest post on related blog A and get approved to improve its quality and exposure you apply tiered link building theory to it.


2. Share post on social media or promote it on your Facebook and Twitter pages. Which will help you build relationship and get more shares and re-tweets.

This include Reddit.com, Inbound.org, Bizsugar etc…

3. Link to this guest post published on blog A form another guest post published on blog B, blog owner will have no issue if the topic is related. By this approach you’re gaining benefit of tiered link building without any spam or black hat tactic.

Matthew Woodward’s tutorial to Tiered link building

What Matt’s shared year ago is different to what he shared recently.

Then and now.

What I concerned is why it took Matt these many months to share this post. What he shares is.

Content in tiered links should be quality and try to provide value.

Anyway Matt also believes that you can rank with zero link building.

What I think? Tiered Link Building Got a Green Signal

Yes, you can implement tiered link building but try to follow quality strategy. I recommend you to go with David’s tactic because you’re building quality links and reputation at same time. Do you think only ranking in Google is enough for ranking?

No! Not for every business.

Especially for eCommerce sites they need to build trust, brand.

Take this test.

When you want to buy any daily used product you Google it right? (Obviously)

Then you scan through SERPs to searching for the SITE YOU TRUSTED. Even if it’s not ranking #1 you will go with it. Why? Because you’re giving your credit card details there so you can’t go with any new site unless you trust them.

Trust can’t be made you’ve to earn it, social media and blogging are best way to earn.

Jacob King of Jacobking.com says Why Your Tiered Links Won’t Rank Sh*t (read this, must).

What do you think?

There are different meanings and approaches on tiered link building, am eager to know about your tactic. Share in comments and let us know.

+Khajamoin is founder of Captured Blogging Tips. You can contact him on FB or twitter. Feel free try below links.

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+Khajamoin is founder of Captured Blogging Tips. You can contact him on FB or twitter. Feel free try below links.

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6 Responses

  1. LisaDecember 30, 2013 at 10:12 amReply

    Khaja, I agree with David’s method. Using social media to share your posts or website as well as places like Biz Sugar, Scoop it, etc. Commenting on other blogs and doing guest posts is another great way to build backlinks naturally. I believe the key is building the links naturally and avoiding any Google penalties that may come your way. Great topic!
    Lisa recently posted..Are You Hitting The Google Plus Button Now Or Are You Still Waiting?My Profile

  2. David McSweeneyDecember 30, 2013 at 1:51 pmReply

    Thanks for posting your thoughts Khaja. You’re totally on the money there with the importance of trust and the eCommerce example is a good one.

    • Khaja MoinDecember 31, 2013 at 5:16 amReply

      Hey David am glad to see you here. Thanks once again for sharing your post.


  3. Karnal SinghJanuary 12, 2014 at 8:11 pmReply

    Thanks Kahaja for useful post on link building.I have been using blog commenting for link building and it has been reasonably useful…
    Karnal Singh recently posted..CLW / Indian Railway Vacancy Specialist Doctor / GDMO Jobs January 2014My Profile

  4. R12 UpgradeJanuary 22, 2014 at 10:27 amReply

    Rich posts Khaja, continue with the same…Gr8 research

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