Jul 12, 2019
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Recently got a few emails for a few clients about neding to link back for photos we used on websites they are all from free stock photo websites. When I did a reverse image search the images are still on those site without any required attribution, so we are following the rules. I sent them over to pexels and they said they are not required backlinks. I didn't know if this has become a new link building tattic, but it doesn't look like a link is needed. Has anyone else received these recently?

Here are a few examples on what they look like.

Example 1 -

Example 2 -

Yan Gilbert

Local Search Expert
LocalU Faculty
Oct 15, 2016
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Probably just a shady technique to get backlinks. Choose an image from an image collection site, reverse image search it to find who is using it, and send email hoping you get a link back.


Jun 10, 2020
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It's definitely a linkbuilding scam, I've seen the same templates. Big G has been alerted to it and John Mueller was asking for examples a little while back. More info here:



Mar 27, 2019
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Yes, this is a tactic that is being used. I read about it recently on another seo forum - but the twist was slightly different and a bit more legitimate - such as uploading photos to Wikipedia or other places where they could be found and used, as long as attribution to the photographer and website was given.

Then sit back and wait, and start searching for websites that have used the image without attribution.

So possibly, this "method" is being taken further as you've experienced.
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