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SEO’s Least Favorite Aspect: Link Building

Many people have said that Link Building is their least favorite aspect of SEO. Let's investigate why that is.

Link Building

Working in SEO has its perks, but every field has its downsides – tasks that may be irritating, difficult, boring, or even painful, like Link Building.

Earlier this week, I asked readers what they disliked about SEO most.

More than 20% of respondents advised that Link Building was their least favorite aspect of SEO. Let’s investigate what the numbers say.

While link building and outreach are time-consuming, tedious, and offer no guarantees of success, these are just a few of the problems raised by SEOs from Search Engine Land’s survey:

  • “Having backlinks is like having a vampire suck your soul, leaving you with little reward.”
  •  “Of course, it is nice to get natural links, but when you are out there fishing for them, you may or may not be fruitful. It is time-consuming, and there is no guarantee that you will see the results you want.”
  • “There is too much work to receive any reward. It always seems pointless.”
  • “In the past, I’ve dealt with websites that used XYZ backlinks.

Occasionally, I inherit a client from a previous agency that used XYZ backlinks, and I must clean them up because they look bad on my end if potential clients or fellow SEOs are looking at our client backlink profiles to see how we do SEO.

  • “It is frustrating and tedious when you have to build rapport with website proprietors who are inundated with spam messages 24-7 to promote a product your group has spent a lot of time creating, only to be ignored or have to negotiate for weeks or even months to get the link live. ‘Heads, meet bricks,’ due to many bad practices impacting people trying to do the right thing.” 
  • “Building lasting links requires time, thoughts, and care, particularly in the B2B space.”

You might also like 5 Ways to Boost Your Digital Data Marketing Strategy’s Impact.


There were a variety of issues, including:

  • “There are a lot of worthless spam listings ahead of genuine, high-quality businesses. Honest evaluations are being deleted. Getting your account back up isn’t easy if you get kicked out for no reason. Even though GBP is common on the SERPs, you must deal with it in local SEO because of its significance.”
  • “It is a great resource for local businesses but unpredictable. I’d rather pay for it and receive better customer service and more control.”
  • “Spammers can create spam websites and GBP listings, making the space volatile. The world would be a better place if these spammers didn’t exist. I have to fight spam daily to help my client be where they were supposed to be.”

Our readers, however, raised other concerns related to Google, ranging from algorithm updates to GA4:

  • “Google is releasing algorithm updates right before the holidays.”
  • “The Page Experience is so poorly defined in terms of what to test and how to measure that it is important.
  • “They tried their hardest to keep people within their system rather than allowing them to click through to websites, and their revenue figures from last year are a good indication of this.”
  • “Understanding and dealing with Google representatives’ white lies.”
  • “Google Analytics is my 24/7 traffic monitoring resource for my online fashion shop. Setting it up was a lengthy process, and I’m not looking forward to using GA4 once all the features I currently use aren’t available. I’ll get used to it, but it will require time.”

Have you had difficulty convincing your company that SEO is a wise investment?

Google is an excellent example of how an SEO strategy can pay off. You can now refer them to this article: Investing in SEO? Here’s How to Have the Maximum Impact.

It shouldn’t be so hard to defend the value of SEO anymore.

Here we are in 2022, and still:

  • “SEO isn’t being taken seriously or valued for its investment or time spent.”

  • “The belief that positive results are immediate and guaranteed positive every time.”
  • “Working twice as hard as PPC managers to prove SEO’s value.”
  • “Why clients should ignore a meaningless automated report received from a cousin’s best friend’s former roommate.”
  • “It is discouraging and demotivating to be constantly challenged by other SEOs on the marketing team. It’s hard to feel confident as an SEO because the foundation keeps changing.”
  • “There may be difficulty implementing what you know will work, especially when validating your strategies, because uneducated executives or those who have been jaded by snake-oil SEOs in the past may resist.”
  • “ It can be difficult for clients to make the necessary changes to their websites to succeed in organic search.”

Random Answers About Link Building

There are also a few random answers in this bucket. These answers did not fit into any of our other categories, but they are all legitimate reasons why these aspects of SEO may be considered least desirable:

  • “Technical optimization is never straightforward as to what exactly is causing the issues, and more often than not, you require assistance from a developer. Once the issue is resolved, it’s gratifying, but the process is a bit of a labyrinth.”
  • “It’s infuriating to witness a well-optimized page randomly rise and fall in the search results.”
  • “The mystery of what influences SERP position makes it difficult to manage. It seems like a moving target.”
  • “I can’t stand keyword research. It requires five different programs, and it is impossible to stop once you have enough data.”
  • “Nobody reads the SEO team’s reports. You can send the same report every month, and nobody will notice. I prefer reporting by exception.”
  • “I hate working with clients who don’t appreciate my services and don’t want to pay.”
  • “Sifting through hundreds of SEO articles in search of fresh perspectives, only to find that most of them are rehashes of adages or even inaccurate theories, is what I find most frustrating.”
  • “It’s a challenge to create unique product names for 2,000 items made of the same metal (jewelry). I am not the only one when I see squiggly or zig-zag lines on a site.”
  • “ Everyone starts with the same checklist of best practice recommendations makes it difficult to identify expertise among agencies. Our business, in turn, would be able to transition into an individualized strategy.”
  • “It is always difficult to convince developers about how important certain things are and to get them on their to-do list quickly.”
  • “I’m fine keeping up with the latest trends, best practices, evolving standards, and strategies and communicating them to internal and external stakeholders. Keeping up with all the menus and pathways in all the different software and platforms is what it takes to get things done. Every day, I’m getting closer to becoming my father, who struggled to reprogram the VCR.”

Many of you are experiencing similar problems in SEO. It’s good to share our grievances with our peers. Many of you are having difficulties. Remember that you might not like everything about your job all the time. For example, that might include specific assignments, projects, clients, or co-workers. At PushLeads link building is our thing….it’s our area of expertise and we’d love to help you Be Visible & Grow through Branding, Digital Marketing and Best SEO Practices. 

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