I work for a web design business and we have been adding links in our clients' website footers to our own as attribution (e.g.: "Website by Acme Co", as plenty of other agencies do). What are the SEO disadvantages in doing this relating to the target website (i.e: our own website)? I've seen a few questions suggesting that in general, site-wide external footer links are not a good idea these days (e.g: Site-wide footer external link - is it a risk?).
Is this likely to be degrading SEO performance for the target site? I have noticed that our agency's website does have a disappointingly low search presence, despite adhering to as many industry practices as possible. Also, when searching on Google for my agency's name, our client's websites rank very closely under our own, as does our website rank on second and third pages when searching for clients' business names.
I've had a look around at some websites done by other agencies to see if it is a common trend to add the
nofollow link type to the external attribution link, but from what I've seen, it doesn't seem to be so. Is something like
nofollow on the external link a good way to fix this?