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Link Building The Key to Rankings. Eric Enge CEO, Stone Temple Consulting. On Page SEO Summary. Establish Relevance! Can’t compete for a term without it Critical to SEO But how do the search engines decide which relevant pages to show first in the results?.

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link building the key to rankings

Link BuildingThe Key to Rankings

Eric Enge

CEO, Stone Temple Consulting

on page seo summary
On Page SEO Summary
  • Establish Relevance!
  • Can’t compete for a term without it
  • Critical to SEO
  • But how do the search engines decide which relevant pages to show first in the results?
role of relevance
Role of Relevance

Car and Driver Magazine

Casino

Gambling

Your Page

(Used Ford Mustangs)

Low Value

High Value

Ford vehicles .com

Online Prescriptions

Anchor Text also plays a key role in establishing

relevance!

the concept of authority
The Concept of Authority

All Websites about Used Cars

A

A

A

search engines do not count all links
Search Engines Do Not Count All Links
  • Links they can’t read:
    • Encrypted JavaScript
    • In an iFrame
  • Links on pages that they can’t crawl
    • Can’t find
    • Marked as NoCrawl in Robots.txt
  • Links marked with NoFollow Attribute
links should be citations
Links Should be Citations
  • Search engines do not want you to buy links
  • Search engines do not want you to get all your links through link swaps
  • These are compensated links, not citations
  • So you must create a reason for people to link to you
1 manual requests
#1 – Manual Requests

Will you link to us?

Hmmm

  • Develop list of relevant sites
  • Research who to contact (and how)
  • Send an email (or call) requesting a link

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Hard to scale

Use: For high value link build

2 competitive research
#2 – Competitive Research

How did he

get so big?

  • Use tools to see who links to your competition
  • Pursue top targets with manual link building
  • Research competitor link building strategies

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Hard to scale

Use: For high value link

building. Get ideas from

competition

3 distribute cool tools
#3 – Distribute cool tools

Cool Tool

3rd Party Site

  • Create a cool tool
  • Allow other web sites to include it on their site
  • Embed a link back to your site

Link

Back

Your Site

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Success is not

certain

Use: If you can create a

unique and compelling tool

4 linkbait and viral campaigns
#4 – Linkbait and Viral Campaigns
  • Create unique, killer content that every-one wants to link to
  • Let market influ-encers know about it
  • Watch the links roll in

Blog

Media

Viral

Content

Social Site

Hobbyist

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Success is not

certain

Use: If you can create truly

compelling and unique

content

5 content data syndication
#5 – Content / Data Syndication

Your

Content

Or Data

Site

1

  • Create content others may want to place on their sites
  • Offer it to other sites
  • Require links back in return

Site

2

Your

Site

Site

3

Links

Back

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Creating the

syndicated content/data

Use: If you have a rich array of

unique content or data

6 link reclamation
#6 – Link Reclamation

404

Page

  • Get a list of 404 errors found by the search engines
  • Determine which ones are from bad external links
  • Request fix, or implement 301 redirect

Broken

Link

Good

Link

Source

Fixed

Link

Your

Site

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Hard to scale

Use: Always, it’s easy

7 exchanges and trades
#7 – Exchanges and Trades

Dude, wanna swap links?

Hmmm

  • Research relevant sites
  • Figure out how to contact them
  • Suggest trading links

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Search engines

can detect and discount links

Use: Only with quality

relevant sites

8 buy the links
#8 – Buy the Links

Hey Dude,Want some dough?

Hmmm

  • Research relevant sites
  • Figure out how to contact them
  • Offer to buy a link

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Search engines

want to devalue these links

Use: Never

google directory
Google Directory
  • Pulls from DMOZ
  • Ordered by Google’s PageRank.
google toolbar
Google Toolbar
  • View PageRank of current page, once turned on.
  • Available for:
    • Firefox
    • Internet Explorer
toolbar pagerank

10

Google

Sampling of Homepage PageRank Ratings

Amazon

9

E

F

F

O

R

T

8

7

Disney

Gap

6

5

4

3

Relative number of pages with PR rating

2

1

Toolbar PageRank
  • Not the same as “Real” PageRank
  • Logarithmic scale from 0 to 10
  • Assigned to web pages, not sites
  • Still, a useful metric

ebay

Culligan

Boston Store

0

how well does pr predict ranking
How well does PR predict Ranking?

http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-science-of-ranking-correlations

quantitative metrics
Quantitative Metrics
  • # of Linking Root Domains to URL
  • # of Linking Root Domains to Domain
  • Homepage PageRank; Domain mozRank
  • URL PageRank; URL mozRank
  • mozTrust
  • # of Links to the Page (Yahoo!, GG Blogsearch, Linkscape)
  • Twitter mentions (Backtweets.com)
subjective metrics
Subjective Metrics
  • Brand name reach/recognition
  • Quality of other links on page/site (Bing - Linkfromdomain)
  • Attainability and Effort
example yahoo link commands
Example Yahoo! Link Commands
  • linkdomain:hulu.com –site:hulu.com
    • See links to hulu.com, but exclude links from hulu.com
  • Linkdomain:hulu.com linkdomain:youtube.com
    • See who links to hulu.com AND youtube.com
social media

Social Media

Leveraging Social Media

to Create Buzz and Links

proceed with care
Proceed with Care!
  • Social communities do not like to be “used”
  • People in the communities take action
  • So do the social media properties themselves
  • Play nice!
  • Be a member of the community
  • Contribute to the community
  • And it will pay you back
wikipedia
Wikipedia
  • If you can, obtain a profile page on Wikipedia
    • Links to your site do not pass link juice, but still valuable
    • Builds credibility with media and others
  • Don’t go add it yourself!
    • Against Wikipedia guidelines
    • Become a contributor, add lots of value, make friends, establish credibility, then suggest it
  • Must meet notability test
  • Suggest relevant category tags
  • Monitor your articles with a tool that emails you when the article changes (trackengine, urlywarning).
wikipedia summary
Wikipedia Summary

This guy must be the real deal

Wikipedia

Your Name

Play by the rules

Benefits: Builds Credibility

Brings traffic

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Time investment

Use: Only if notable

slide44
Digg
  • An article that makes the Digg home page:
    • Can get tens of thousands of visitors
    • Can get hundreds, or thousands of links
  • Getting there is the hard part
  • Create great content
    • Use Digg to research other articles on your topic area that have made it
  • Target the audience (13 to 28 year old males)
  • Befriend or hire a top Digger
slide47
Digg
  • Strip away all commercial links from your article
  • Friend popular Diggers. Better yet, get a popular Digger to submit your story.
  • Craft a killer title using this formula from Muhammad Saleem: number + adjective + key phrase
    • E.g. “13 Most Chilling Haunted Hotels” or “16 Incredibly Unconventional Hotel Rooms”
digg summary
Digg Summary

Tons of Visitors

16 most…

Digg

Home

Page

Tons of Links

Your Article

Benefits: Traffic

Links

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Home Run Ball

Use: If your site lends itself to the right type of content

youtube
YouTube
  • Create great videos
  • Post on YouTube
  • If related to a current event, that’s a plus
  • The videos on YouTube get most of the links
  • Stack the odds by creating a microsite and making the microsite URL your username.
    • E.g. “willitblend.com” is BlendTec’s username
  • Use as many tags as possible while still being accurate
youtube summary
YouTube Summary

You

Tube

Create Great Video

Benefits: Branding

Traffic & Some Links

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Home run ball

Use: If you have a killer

concept for a video

linkedin
LinkedIn
  • Add links to your website, and two otherURLs and select “Other” so you can specify theanchor text.
  • Include it in your public profile
  • Add a LION (LinkedIn Open Networker) or two to your network.
    • Try to find a “promiscuous sneezer”
    • Use the TopLinked.com list. (http://www.toplinked.com/top50.html)
  • Add your email address to your “professional headline” so folks 4+ degrees away don’t have to waste an InMail to contact you
linkedin summary
LinkedIn Summary

LinkedIn

Profile

LinkedIn

Community

Benefits: Spread ideas

Reach thought leaders

Bypass spam filters

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Labor intensive

Use: To build high value

contacts

facebook
Facebook
  • Update regularly
  • Create a fan page or group or both
  • Use fan pages to build long term relationships
    • Fan pages get indexed
  • Use groups for quick discussions and viral activity
  • Customize your fan page or group
  • Update regularly!
facebook summary
Facebook Summary

Traffic

Fan

Page

Facebook

Community

Your

Site

Group

Benefits: Branding,

Traffic & Some Links

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Requires

Commitment!

Use: To build reputation,

traffic and links

twitter
Twitter
  • Plan to contribute regularly
  • Pick a good account name (memorable)
  • Customize your background
  • Create a microsite dedicated to Twitter
  • Use hash tags for Twitter search
  • Include URLs and references where appropriate
  • Contribute regularly
twitter summary
Twitter Summary

Traffic

Twitter

Account

Twitter

Community

Your

Site

Benefits: Branding,

Traffic & Some Links

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Requires

Commitment!

Use: To build reputation,

traffic and links

blogs
Blogs
  • Start One
  • Update regularly
  • Interact with other bloggers.
    • Comment on their blogs
    • Get to know them
    • DON’T SPAM them
  • Update regularly
blog summary
Blog Summary

Blogoshpere

Your

Blog

Links

Web

Benefits: Links and

Relationships

Scalability

Value

Downsides: Requires

Commitment!

Use: For links and

relationships

put it all together
Put it all together
  • The best link building plan for you is unique. To figure it out, you must:
    • Study the market
    • Find out what your competition is doing
    • Figure out where the best links for you can be found
    • Determine what it will take to get links from them
    • Support the campaign with content, tools, or whatever
    • Experiment, experiment, and then experiment again
eric enge eenge@stonetemple com

Eric Engeeenge@stonetemple.com

(508) 485-7751

@stonetemple