Web Designers | Their Backlinks in Client Footers

Question – as a web designer, should I be placing back links to my website in client footers? Do sitewide links still work?
I’ve read that I should follow the below guides:
1. Use a no follow (what’s the point??)
2. Use branded keyword and not a spammy keyword like “BEST LOS ANGELES WEB DESIGNER” as the handle for my link
Any other rules? Is it worth it? Will it negatively affect my SEO?
I’m not up to date with all of the recent Google updates, so I really have no idea what’s standard practice anymore. I don’t want to be hurting my SEO by placing back links on client websites.
When I run competitor sites on SEMrush, footer back links appear to have some positive effect on their domain authority and SERP rankings.
What do you think?
2 👍🏽 2
[fitered from 72 💬🗨]


As a client, that would annoy me and I’d ask you to remove it.

As a client you should appreciate more his/my work than just paying the fee… you see your website as your thing that you bought for… for us it is our work… btw, do you look on the products that you buy from the store, do they say who made them?? … if look at the websit as a product… But you are the Customer aka Boss…
Mandy » Socaş
I disagree unless previously agreed you should not be advertising on a clients website.
Yes, indeed… that's a little bit more flexible than: "as a client that would annoy me" … I will never work with people with this attitude …
Kaneshiro » Mandy
Why would it annoy you? When a customer sees that there is no website design agency name and link on the footer of a website, they usually assume that the company designed the website itself because it cannot afford a professional website design and therefore is not successful.
Mandy » Socaş
good job we don’t work together then because your attitude of ‘I deserve more than my fee’ is not right. I feel like advertising on a website after you agree a fee is dishonest. It’s like taking a few and a whole chunk more. I certainly couldn’t work with someone like that – what else would you do without my knowledge?
Mandy » May
, I wouldn’t want any company advertising on my website and certainly wouldn’t want my competitors to see who we use and where to go – you need to think of it from a client perspective.
And second, the market it is full of liars and fakers… that they take credit for somebody elses work… and guess what, you believe the liar because you don't like the credit on your website… and I am telling you something else, if he's a professional he will know how to work in your favor too…
We think more from clients perspective… we have known hundreds… you only met few of us…
Mandy » Socaş
I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about!
Socaş » Mandy
see… we know what you are saying, but you don't really know what we are saying… 🤓 who doesn't understand the other perspective..?
Mandy » Socaş
now you’re being ridiculous. I wish you good luck in the future.
Socaş » Mandy
Bye Mandy and good luck!
Kaneshiro » Mandy
I am the client. My company’s clients are large corporations so we want our website to be professionally designed. When a client sees no agency name on the footer, then it hurts our brand reputation.
What I was saying… overall… it is the Credit thing of the website should be law, and no surprise if there will be sooner or later. Whoever got his work stolen will understand… and customers who have met few fakers web designers that have presented a stolen portfolio and laugh about their "final product" (which will never see)… then, we will both agree Customer and Web designers / Devs / Designers / etc that Credit it is a very healthy thing in this business… not something that I want more than the fee, my fees are quite rewarding and satisfying… and my customers as well.
Mandy » May
that’s interesting, for me as long as the site looks good and ranks then nobody will be wondering about who deigned it. Different industries obviously. 🙂
Pritchard » Kaneshiro
100% I also promote my clients via our social channels & they also go into our website portfolio.
My Agency is well known within our niche & having our brand associated with a clients helps them more than us.
It’s more of a oddity when a company does not have an agency name/link on the footer of the website. The only exception that I can think of would be a company like Best Buy because they have an in-house IT department that runs their eCommerce website.
Pritchard » Socaş
I have found 3 sites we have designed being promoted by others as their work. Luckily my husband is a lawyer 😁
Fotea » Mandy
I totally understand you. As an SEO, I'd NEVER place my backlink on the footer of a client's website unless I talk to him before and he agrees, maybe lowering the fee (still, I find backlinks in the footer to be spammy so I won't do that anyway. At most I'd accept my brand name without any link.) .
I won't want any credit from my client since he payed for his service, just as I won't accept my construction engineer to write his name on my house just because he built it with my money.
If the job is well done, the client will surely tell his friends about you.
Flavius absolutely!! Totally agree with your analogy
Els Van de Veire
Just like a painter never signs of his/her work… ? Even when the painting is commissioned painters would likely put their signature at the bottom of their work. I think it is a common habit of putting your name under your art in Web design. And when other people like your work it makes it easy to find you and ask you questions, maybe even ask you to do their website.
I don’t consider the agency name and link in the footer of the website as advertising. It’s more of a prestige thing that we paid to have our website designed professionally. We want the agency’s credit on our website. It would be embarrassing if a client wonders why we designed the website ourselves and assumes we cannot afford to buy a website design.
Fotea » Pritchard
That's totally another issue. Someone's stealing the credit for your work and you should be annoyed by this. But that's no reason to advertise your brand in your client's website. If someone's gonna steal the credit, he may just as well just remove your backlink and place his own instead anyway.
Socaş » Fotea
your comparison it is absurd. … as a SEO, it may not be a good idea for competition to see who you working with… HE ASKED AS A WEB DESIGNER (it's the same name in your mother language) … let's f*cking end this up, a nice brand logo won't hurt anyone… and if you are working only for the money, good luck Fotea… The constructor doesn't need to write his name, his portfolio works on pictures …
Socaş » Els Van de Veire
Yes, in the end somebody understand that for some of us, it is a creation. Thank God! 🙌
Socaş » Pritchard
It happened to me as well… i have asked for a portfolio from multiple teams for a bigger project..and I have found my best websites in a copy / paste portfolio list … received from 2 of the teams… if thought they might know each other at least… I was ok even they would have know each other :)))) but not even that… Good luck! 🤟
Pritchard » Fotea
the person didn't have access to the site to put their backlink. Its our ongoing client & I am still working on the site 🤣
Alex » Socaş
I also don’t know what you’re saying, just because you say a load of confusing words doesn’t make you right. Otherwise, did you know that linking to a web page on Google makes the MDHash and the WCG go out of term? Resulting in the mapping error of the GCHQ?
Alex » Mandy
Agree, if you would have asked me I would consider itand would make me think better of you, but if you just slap it on after I paid you is pretty sneaky
a baby panda knows that dude 👌
web designers their backlinks in client footers

Alex » Kaneshiro
Yes, that is what people think when they go to Apple, Google, Facebook 😂 in all seriousness, when I see a footer link it makes me think the Opposite, the company cannot afford a designer so they have it done for free that’s why they put a link there. Just like those footer links on free hosting, powered by Web.com, etc
Stand Out Online with a Professional Small Business Website
Stand Out Online with a Professional Small Business Website
Stand Out Online with a Professional Small Business Website
Kaneshiro » Alex
A lot of large companies have in-house IT departments so their website is designed by their own employees.
Done for free? You mean, by a new website designer?
The worst is when the footer says Wix or Powered by WordPress.
Yep, plenty of times where a designer will offer to do it for free, in return have it linking to his site, which I think it's fare to link back, but not when I paid you to do the work.
You pay somebody who agrees with you. I don't always agree with customers you see, I choose this freedom, and you might say nobody wants to work with me, but guess what, I am a FREELANCER for 15 years now.
And a professional will work with a professional 🙂
Anthony » Mandy
not when something of value is to be taken from that link every single day and is chargeable to whom ever that links point to, do you pay for the hosting of the website? Do you rent that link space on his website? Buying a pair of trainers/sneakers is a one off purchase, they receive your money once, then business is concluded. Considering how SEO works, I would say you’d be a dick to add footer links as your the designer.. if you want to do that shit, go make free WordPress templates buddy. I don’t understand how you or anyone would feel compelled to put your tag on it, if I were in a meeting with you and you were my web designer and you pulled that out the bag, I’d honestly laugh in your face and ask you for a rental fee or just dismiss it there and then.
Socaş » Alex
good luck with working for free designers 😉 even as Employed I will get the extra money for that work too..
Mandy » Anthony
I think you may be thinking that I think you can place the link, I certainly do not… actually I totally agree with you!
Anthony » Mandy
sorry it was supposed to be a reply to the original post, must have accidentally replied to your comment.
Alex » Socaş
Looks like someone doesn't understand me, I didn't say i use free designers.
Mandy » Anthony
no worries!
Anthony » Socaş
lol an “intelligent customer” riiiigght and web designers should know his/her place in the food chain and be happy with payment for services instead of being cheeky and promoting themselves. Your customers have your contact info, if they decide to recommend you, they will.
Socaş » Anthony
you are the cherry on top 😀 honestly do you read before write. I wouldn't do it for SEO purposes, I am doing it for credits. Because my works are looking very impressive and are done in a very professional way. My SEO is "whoever made this website, I want to work with him."
Anthony » Socaş
as I said to you, if your work is good, your customers have your info, they can recommend you to their peers. I would not take a liking to someone who wishes to automatically add their print onto my business website because they think it’s customary, sure, ask me if you can, but I’ll tell you, are you providing me a discount for your work? No? So why should I help you get additional customers, advertising costs money mate?
It’s just not fair morally. Ask them, sure, with their permission sure, but I would not just put it there and wait for them to ask why it’s there. Be courteous for gods sake, people are paying you for a service. Service them, don’t take advantage of them.
brother, i said it five times now
ON AGREEMENT! You don't want to have a nice small decent logo somewhere downthere on your website, I'll charge you double the money. Tomorrow somebody else is working with you and takes MY WORK which is worse than taking me that amount of money. Plus you don't seem to know the industry, do you want me to show my works in some other lists of portfolio … the problem these days people is that you all think this technical: I pay you, you do it my way. And just to finish this mess, I can put my signature in the code anyway 😉 bingo! Is this ethical?
Alan » Mandy
i agree.. Competitors seeing your site do well and will try and contact them too 😂
Andrew ✍️ » Mandy
Of course, I NEVER put links on client sites unless previously agreed. Most clients don’t let me, since I do a lot of websites for marketing and web design agencies! Lol

If you can agree with the Higher Consciousness Bosses, Owner of the Website, the only person in the world that makes Internet working… You should put follow dude, it is worth more than no follow ..
Yes, no follow. But you can throw some spammy anchor text every now and then; especially if you have a lot of sites. And yes, they help a lot to get new clients, in particular if your sites are ranked well.
From what I’ve been reading on another group, add a dofollow link on the homepage footer then a nofollow on any additional pages. This will cement your brand as well as increasing the SEO Juice as the homepage holds more value.

John » Jack
that makes sense
Andrew ✍️ » Jack
i like this idea!

This discussion went way to far. This is indeed the correct mode to put your credit, by contract, or agreement. An intelligent customer will appreciate more that you care about your work, and you both will find a common way to do it… everything escalated, from this kind of attitude (that will annoy me… ). And for me, this is the point where there will be, no agreement whatsoever. Probably the end of discussion, who appreciate his work enough, will put this in the contract. Thanks Bokov!

Mandy » Socaş
an intelligent designer will appreciate that everything needs to be agreed, not just taken.
You know what, i think we are both stupid. This should have been said from the beginning. I have never assumed to put my name on a website without an agreement. I just went ballistic on your attitude: that will definitely annoy me. So: the end! Good luck everyone, hope you had a good time. Have a great weekend! 🙋‍♂️
I pay a web designer to design a site. If they want to then advertise on that site, they need to pay me for the advertising space.
Andrew ✍️ » Mike
Agreed completely, this is the best way to look at it in fact

I think it’s tacky and sitewide links are spammy. If they really want to give you credit, add it to the homepage only. Links should have proximity, relevance, and prominence. If as a web developer you build a site for a dental office (just as an example), there really isn’t much relevancy when comparing that site to yours.
If your client allows go for it,
1. Don't use No-Follow
2. Use Keyword as your company name
The best reason for putting credits on a website is referral traffic. We get new business several times a year because someone saw a website we built for another client and clicked on the footer link.
You have read correctly – Google specifically cites this exact thing. Google also considers no follow a hint rather than a directive now. Site wide footer links are also largely devalued so you won’t be getting a lot of link power anyway. Also these can dilute your niche specific keywords that are associated with your site which help you rank much better.
As an SEO, when I take on new clients, one of the first things I do is remove these links. It provides zero benefit to the website owner and is just bleeding out pagerank which is making all of their internal links a little bit weaker.
If a web designer wants to advertise on a website, they should pay for that link.
Andrew ✍️
Thanks everyone for the valuable feedback!! I didn’t expect this many opinions. I will talk with future clients about adding (and of course paying for) ONE do-follow link on the home page footer only.


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