One SEO professional asked John Mueller in a hangout about backlinks – more specifically paid links.
They were concerned about links getting reported – if they are reported, such as if you report those links to the Google team as well.
Their main question is how does Google determine what is actually a paid link?
Or, is it more of the fact that Google understands a loose financial framework that helps them understand that these are actually paid links?
John explained that from Google’s point of view, they take a lot of different factors into account – they don’t give every link they find the full weight.
Even if they’re not sure, because something in terms of link value can always be in between.
It’s also more about the fact that Google takes everything into account.
It’s not just because a link was reported as a paid link that they treat it as such, because random people on the web report many things that aren’t necessarily true.
At the same time, this is useful information sometimes.
It’s potentially a lot of things that come together regarding paid links.
The SEO professional then asked about internal links in specific locations – such as within an anchor text map from the header, or within the content, or within the footer.
Does the placement of these links, whether it’s in the head or body or content, matter?
John explained that on one hand, they do use it to understand the context of the page better.
So things like link anchor text helps them in that regard.
Usually, the only time when Google differentiates where links are on a page is when they are trying to determine exactly how these links are relevant to the page.
This happens at approximately the 0:38 mark in the video.