My site has had a home page link from a very strong website for a few years. The link seemed to have quite a positive effect on our listings when it was first added. We have recently been hit by one of the Google updates (for the first time ever) and I have been in touch with an SEO agency.
One of the things they told me that they thought could have caused a problem, was the fact that our previous home page link from the website in question was changed to a link in the side bar (throughout the whole site) a few months ago. I'm not sure of the exact date so I'm not sure if it coincided with our drop in Google, but it seemed to be somewhere around the same time. The SEO company said that home page links are stronger and less spammy-looking than side bar links that are on every page on a site. It doesn't seem to make sense to me as lots of sites have headers, footers and side bars that are consistent throughout their whole site and why would Google give less value to a link in a side bar throughout the whole site (including home page) compared to a home page link?
Any advice on this matter would be appreciated. Would you advise I ask the web master to revert back to a home page only link?