Most website owners understand that getting links from quality sites is the key to creating better Google rankings.

In the past few years Google has been working hard on making sure that links from low quality sites don’t count as much as those from high quality sites and the link marketplace has changed dramatically.

Dave Naylor started an interesting discussion on his blog this week about how websites are selling text links disguised as Google Adsense adverts, purely to avoid being spotted as a link seller.

This kind of stealthy approach to buying and selling links just shows how far underground the link marketplace has gone recently.

On the other hand we see that GoCompare has bounced back almost to its previous rankings after removing its alleged paid links.

Some people were even paid to remove the links that GoCompare had apparently bought in the first place – nice work if you can get it.

The lesson to be learned here is that while there will always be websites using tricks to build better Google rankings, in the long term it is better to build a sustainable business.