Google’s John Mueller said this morning in a video hangout at the 35:32 mark into the video that Google’s algorithms ignores more links found within press releases. He said Google automatically ignores these links because often the press releases are from the company’s themselves and thus are not really natural links. Thus Google tries to ignore these links.
He did add that the links won’t necessarily hurt you but they won’t benefit you.
Google said in the past that press release links should be nofollowed because they consider them unnatural links. They added them to their link schemes guidelines a while back as well. Back when Matt Cutts was around, he said these links won’t help you.
So if you have a lot of press release links, they won’t help but they shouldn’t hurt you anymore. Unless you are really spammy with them…
Here is the video embed at the start time of when John started talking about this:
Here is the transcript:
So we try to ignore links from things like press releases because we know in general companies put the press releases out themselves. So any links in there are essentially placed by themselves.
But if these links happen and they’re out there it’s not something you need to worry about because you can’t really take them all back.
I just wouldn’t rely on kind of press releases as a strategy for building up links for a website because like I said we do ignore most of those.
Forum discussion at YouTube.