Building links from pre-curated content types including footers, widgets, themes, article marketing and so on is considered to be an efficient search engine optimization (SEO) practice. But, it seems as if Googleâ€™s algorithmic changes have affected this practice too. Matt Cuttsâ€™ video on Googleâ€™s current thinking about getting links from article marketing, widgets etc clearly presents Googleâ€™s stance regarding this matter. Randomly installed links from footer, widget and theme links are considered inorganic. If you have put an anchor text on your footer, then also it is considered inorganic.Â If the widget has been embedded on a website, you will find there are a number of the same anchor texts that appear on all the pages of the website.
Google views such links as inorganic as a large number of exact match anchor texts appears unnatural. Matt Cutts further explains that these links are inorganic even if there are no exact match anchor texts. It is because the individual who creates the widgets or themes decides what the anchor text should be, not the one who is actually doing the linking.
In the case of article marketing also, the same problem exists. Suppose you have a low-quality article with less number of words and high keyword density anchor texts at the bottom. The article will eventually reach those people who are concerned more about the payments they get from the links rather than quality content. Here, people are not editorially choosing the anchor text to link. Instead, they choose it only for the sake of money. It doesnâ€™t matter whether the content is good or bad.
These kinds of links from footers, widgets, themes or article marketing are merely boilerplate links according to Matt Cutts, because people are not really choosing such links to endorse what the particular link or anchor text is signifying.
To be precise, if you acquire too many links from widgets, footers, themes or low-quality articles just for boosting up the ranking, Google will consider them unnatural and not count them for PageRank. Google counts only those links that people choose to editorially link to your site because they find that your site is good, and not merely because they are paid.