Dir Sirs, Would You Like More PageRank? Link Exchange...

Jim Boykin talks link exchange emails, and why over 99% of them are rubbbbiiiiissssssshhhhhhhh!

LOL! It's spam, and you know it is. LOL ;)

Search Engine Ranking Factors

This page is great.

Some information gets smarter with more input, and some gets less smart with more input. One of the hard parts about SEO is that everything is debatable. Some additional opinions will poison data, whereas others will make it way better.

Even beyond the debatable is that questioning the right people makes some data seem much more credible and so much easier to spread. If you seek input from the right people in your industry, like Danny Sullivan in search, you can help ensure that an idea spreads far and quick.

I bet that within a month or two that page will be the most well linked document on the SEO Moz site, and it is something just about anyone can do in any industry. Design problems, site usability problems, gardening problems, airplane landing problems, etc etc etc.

The key is to know who to ask for help and to be trusted enough to where they want to help you. Of course you also have to appeal to their ego to where they want to help you. Other than including MM in the data sources I don't think there is much Rand could have done better to make that page more linkable. I love the smiley faces.

Another nice thing about the page is it could be resorted, asking the same questions to self proclaimed search spam gurus. Give DaveN, Greg Bosers, Oilman, Baked Jake, and a few other guys the same set of criteria and see how they answer it. Then those feedbacks can be cross compared.

A Google Zeitgeist of SEO factors that has biggest gainers, biggest losers, and top ten would be amazing link bait that reminded people to visit frequently and link in every month. And then maybe redue the whole ranking factors thing once a year or so.

Good idea Rand.

Link Building Tip: Old Community Sites

If you are struggling for creative ways to uniquify your content and make it more linkable sometimes a good technique is to search an old established community site for a common word. The older the community site the better...as there will be lots more random stuff from before the web became so commercial.

an example: [well.com the]

As a fair warning, some of the top links will be to stuff like rectal foreign bodies. Links, blogs, and RSS may be replacing email on some fronts, but you can still get something out of the butt history page.

Another good link building tip is to take a look at the oblique strategy cards.

Google Duplicate Content Filter

Captain Caveman posts on Google's duplicate content filters.

Interesting tactic by Google. If too many pages on the same site trip a duplicate content filter Google does not just filter through to find the best result, sometimes they filter out ALL the pages from that site.

This creates an added opportunity cost to creating keyword driftnets & deep databases of near identical useless information. One page left in the results = no big deal. Zero pages = big deal.

Not only would this type of filter whack junk empty directories, thematic screen scraper sites, and cookie cutter affiliate sites, but it could also hit regular merchant sites which had little unique information on each page.

On commercial searches many merchants will be left in the cold & the SERPs will be heavily biased toward unique content & information dense websites.

If your site was filtered there is always AdWords. And if there are few commercial sites in the organic results then the AdWords CTR goes up. Everyone is happy, except the commercial webmaster sitting in the cold.

Yet another example of Google trying to nullify SEO techniques that work amazingly well in it's competitors results. I wonder what percent of SEOs are making different sites targeted at different engines algorithms.

I have to be somewhat careful with watching some of these types of duplicate content filters, because I have a mini salesletter on many pages of this site, and this site could get whacked by one of these algorithms. If it does changes will occur. Perhaps using PHP to render text as an image or some other similar technique.

Tweaking Content For SEO Perfection: Without Reason

Recently I did a paid consult with a person who runs a number of websites who wanted to increase his AdSense earnings. He wanted to know the secret of tweaking in page copy for SEO perfection.

As he kept tweaking his page copy he kept raising the keyword density and unknowingly pulling out some of the modifiers and other semantically related terms.

Since his site did not have an amazing authority score he was not ranking for the most common terms. Most his traffic was coming in from longer queries. As he tweaked in the page copy his pages became less linkable / linkworthy, and he removed many of the terms that were responsible for the 3 and 4 word queries that were bringing visitors to his website. His traffic kept dropping so he kept tweaking. Traffic kept dropping, keep tweaking, repeat cycle...

Some SEO firms like to charge recurring fees for on the page optimization, but they only like to sell that because there is no additional work.

Thinking of it another way, would you want a person outside your organization who knows little about your business model and customers tweaking your sales copy and articles every month? I wouldn't.

Tweaking page content just wastes time that could be spent creating new content.

When people say keep content fresh they mean:

  • keep adding content

  • keep adding reasons for someone to want to link your way
  • keep adding pages that cover slightly different ideas and termspaces you have not yet covered with your content

This SEW thread also covers the topic of needlessly tweaking page content for SEO.

Two Ways to Fry a Fish

Well that is an irrelevant post title, but I figured NickW would like it. :)

Online dating. Hyper competitive. Too many sites. etc etc etc. But you can still get links and traffic by approaching the topic from a different angle.

Desparate Dating is a good example of that.

The site might be absolutely offensive to a ton of people, but that site will likely get links from BOTH people who like it AND people who hate it. The site is equally unique and offensive, which is something that is oh-so-easy to link at.

One well known search engineer in the past also recommended creating a grammar nazi site that went around fixing everyone's borken grammar and linking back to the home site.

Teaching Children to Spam

Spam from children...it's coming...

The same words, sent in the exact same way, carried two completely different meanings. In the "default" case, it's just another shill hawking just another product. In the second, it's a real request from a real person who is not even directly involved with the product, who happened to think it (and, more importantly, the folks involved with it) were neat, and wanted to get the word out.

Same words. Same medium. Very different meanings.

I think some of the people email spamming with poor english would probably do far better if they also tried sounding young or whatever in some of them. Sounding authentic is the key.

Most of my link requests talk about other subjects as well. If only I were 20 years younger...arg..am...getting...old.

I really like the Threadwatch tagging thingie. It's where I found this link & is a good way for people to submit stories without actually having to submit them :)

Splitting Straws - Bad Linking Strategies 101

So when I announced Backlink Analyzer I posted a detailed blog post, which got many links from solid authority industry related sites.

I later moved the bulk of the info to the download page, and now most people will probably link at that.

The reason I posted so much info on the blog part is that I wanted to make sure that people read it / saw it. I probably should have had a bit more self confidence with that and placed the bulk of the information on it's own permanent page right off the start.

One of the biggest things many webmasters do that hurt their sites is not being consistant with internal linking or not being consistent with where they tell others to link.

Ebay - Charity Auction Link Building

I am sure I have seen some coverage of this before, but not much recently (although I have not been reading around as much as I used to).

Some people auction off stuff on eBay and share the profits with some non profit organizations. They contact non profit websites when they launch the auctions and try to get links to their auction and their website on the supporters pages.

Some of them start two auctions in parallel supporting different charities such that bidders aim to outbid the other item to show how much more important their charity is and how much more they support it.

After paying back the costs sometimes the links are way cheaper than buying similar links directly, and you help charities. Win win.

Link Bait

Perfect examples of link bait (although some examples may offend certain religious people):

Although those are both on exceptionally popular sites, you can do that with obscure sites if the story is easy to spread and / or funny.

You really only need one well known person to link in on something like that and it just spreads. This PageRank 0 site recently got a homepage link from AOL.

If you are in a field that can't build links naturally create linkbait. Goldenpalace.com, an online casino, always buys random overpriced crap for the promotional effects. Others state unpopular claims with minimal bets that get them far more plublicity than the cost of them losing.

Other interesting stuff...