Education institutions are the only sites allowed to have an edu domain. For this reason there are only tens of thousands of .edu domains where as there are billions of dot com and info domains.
The fact edu domains are few and often contain educational content; search engines will deem an .edu link with some authority and give the link a heavy weight of trust. But..
Education institutions allow their students and staff to have full access to the domain. This access will include hosted blogs and actual pages such as information, events and job listings. Students can register their personal blog on the .edu domain and are free to use it as long as they are a student of the institution.
Students being the entrepreneurs that they are will often see and discuss amongst themselves that they have at their disposal a resource they can sell. Students will sell a link from their .edu blog to your site. The higher the page rank the higher the price they will ask for.
Now this is where the “for” and “against” argument starts.
Because links are being sold the blog will often take on a spammy appearance. The reason being is because we have a student blogging about their last Aspen ski trip with loads of photographs and somewhere there is a link to a casino or pharmaceutical site.
Search engines pick this theme up straight away and will often discount the link and render it useless.
This is the basis for the “against” argument.
Now the “for” argument is having your link from a site that is on theme and provides good authoritive content. The links are hand picked and blend into the site providing a reference to external material.
So if you are planning a solid link building program to achieve high search engine positions you must consider at least one or possibly two to three inbound .edu links.
Having one to three .edu links directed to your site will convey sufficient trust and authority to your site to have it soar well above other sites that do not have such a link.
Basically, if your link is an on themed .edu site then link is worthwhile. If from a spammy blog then yes that link will be worthless.
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