Blog: SEO
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Should You Use Google Entity Stacks for SEO?

Avatar for John Koinange

John Koinange is a contributor for the Lockedown SEO blog. His work has appeared in numerous online publications.

The short answer is NO.

“Google Stacks” aka “Google Entity Stacks” or “Google Authority Stacks” are a link-building tactic that leverage Google properties to build relevance and information about your brand, content, and keywords.

These “stacks” use interlinking Google properties like Google Docs, Google Slides, Google Sheets, custom Google Maps, and Google Sites to try and build link authority, ultimately linking to the target website. Google offers some of these products freely while you can access others through paid subscriptions.

The idea with this tactic is that Google.com is a “high authority” website, and that Google is unlikely to algorithmically penalize links coming from their own properties. Some SEO companies have offered this “service” in recent years as a way to rank websites higher.

Applying Google Stacks lies in the expectation that Google cannot deindex or devalue its products. Smart, but not quite so.

Google stacking is the evolution of a previous link scheme method known as “Web 2.0s”, which included using social bookmarking websites, Blogger sites (also a Google property), and other inexpensive or free sites like Wix, Weebly, HubPages, and Squidoo to build a “link wheel”. The main difference with Google stacking is that rather than pointing toward one specific content platform such as Blogspot, WordPress.com, or Weebly, applying Google stacks links a site to as many Google properties as possible. The Google stacks serve three main functions.

  • Link building since Google provides a back link to your site.
  • Content promotion: Leveraging Google properties for higher ranking.
  • Reputation control: Utilizing the Google Drive properties to bury negative comments for a period of time.

Building s Link Strategy on Sand

Interestingly, a significant number of businesses do not use Google Stacks as a SEO tactic.

Starting in 2014, Google caught up on this trick and started cracking on websites with spammy links, targeting Private Blog Networks (PBNs). The previous “Web 2.0s” served as buffer zones against spammy links pointing directly to your main website. Applying Google Stacks doesn’t eliminate the risk of spam links from PBNs finding their way to your main site, but it uses the same outdated mentality around link building. Additionally, it’s unfathomable to imagine Google cannot detect such obvious link schemes within its properties.

Note: Google began devauling PBN links starting in 2014, and as they got better at detecting unnatural link schemes, many ‘black hat’ SEOs turned towards Google Stacks to create a new type of link scheme.

Google devalues manipulative sites within a very short period of time, as soon as they detect and determine a link scheme is present. Black hat SEO may be used to sidestep that, in some cases, temporarily — but why risk building a SEO foundation on shifting sand?

Relying on manipulative link wheels are neither sustainable nor providing long-term value for money. Google will most likely notice the spammed stacks and devalue your page ranking by removing the link efficacy.

Your best bet lies in investing in proper, natural SEO strategies. Trickery and buying links from PBNs and article farms (basically set up to create random articles that link to whichever local business is willing to pay), can only last for so long.

Using Google stacks looks cool. The sales pitch sounds good, sure. However, gimmicks and shortcuts bring uncertainty and, in some cases, devastating losses. Google continuously reviews its ranking algorithms but it has been consistent on ranking brands.

Put emphasis on superior content creation, meeting search intent, and sending quality signals to Google through appropriate SEO strategies and your business will improve in rankings. Stacking won’t help much in the long run.

Avatar for John Koinange

John Koinange is a contributor for the Lockedown SEO blog. His work has appeared in numerous online publications.

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