User-generated content is content created by visitors to a website. These include, for example, comments or forum posts. Often links to other websites are placed within such posts. This option is commonly used as a link building technique, unfortunately also in the form of comment or forum spam, which violates Google’s policies.
But do such links really matter for Google Search? According to John Mueller, Google usually ignores links from user-generated content and automatically generated content.
In a recent webmaster hangout, John Mueller was asked how Google handled links from analytics, profile, and similar pages. John Mueller replied that Google ignores most links from autogenerated content as well as user-generated content. Such links are easy to recognize for Google because they would basically link anywhere.
What does this mean for links from comments and forum posts? If John Mueller’s statement should refer to all types of user-generated content, then links from comments and forum posts for the rankings in the Google search are not or at least hardly significant. The construction of such links might not be worthwhile – at least with regard to influencing the rankings.
On request, whether the above statement applies to all links of user-generated content, said John Mueller, not everything is the same:
It probably depends on the exact circumstances as so often. A flat rate rating would undoubtedly be wrong. At least it can be assumed that links are affected that are set indiscriminately and not purposefully.
As far as comments are concerned, one can refer to a statement made last year by John Mueller that comments can enrich the content of a website and even create relevance for additional keywords.
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