Link building that makes sense, #SESNY Notes

The following are my personal notes from the SES Conference 2013 in New York, #sesny


Link building that makes sense, by LinkBuildingJon of Page One Power

SEO is Simple

  • 3 Elements of SEO

    1. Technical

      • Can the page you want to rank be found in google?
      • Does it load quickly?
    2. Content

      • Does your page title contain your keyword?
      • are there 250 words about the keyword?
      • are there pictures?
    3. Links

      • Are there links going to your page?
      • The page with the most, best links wins!
        • Remember, google ranks web pages, not web sites.
    • the page on your site ranks for your keyword, not your whole site
  • Find target site
  • Build links.
  1. In a world without google

    • If google did not exist, where would you want to put your links? (No bizarre oddball directories and bs social bookmarking)
    • If Matt Cutts (Head of web spam team on google) was over my shoulder, whould I pursue getting this link?

    • Guarantees you won’t take hits from algorithm change

  2. Relevancy First!

    • White hat link building follows relevancy, not pagerank
    • Getting a link from a high PR page used to always be valuable, today its more the relevance of the content
    • Relevancy Tree (create with team)
      • write down all the terms that relate to your market
      • circle all the words that have a group, community, or content based around it
      • organize from most related to least related
  3. Website owners are people. And people link to people.

    • the best links come from people
    • if its an instant link, its probably not good
    • call them if possible
  4. The most powerful link building tool is your brain

    • No link buidling tool, seminar or article can come up with the ideas
    • Use your brain!
  5. Link building is a team sport

    • Link building alone is torturous, impossible, dreadful, terrible, ineffective.
  6. Forget viral

    • If it goes viral, it goes viral.
  7. FTBOM: For the betterment of mankind.

    • talk about something that’s for the betterment of mankind
    • if you say “we have an awesome site” would you give the link? or if it were an article that adds value for the readers of the target site, you have a better chance of getting the link.

Regarding anchor text

  • the clickable text on the page
  • the word is the link
  • Exact anchor text with your keyword is DANGEROUS

    • If the objective of google is to find naturally occuring greatness, they don’t all have the same link names.
  • VARY YOUR ANCHOR TEXT (Link profile), also use your plain old URL.

  • The legacy of spam is disappearing

    • getting more calls from people who understand the value of quality links over quantity
    • Used to talk about 1000’s of links, now people talk about 10’s of links
    • Pages can rank with highly competitive links with less than 15 good quality links
    • Spam will ultimately destroy long term success
  • Marketing = SEO

    • think about places that you should get links in a world without google
    • relevancy is just the beginning
    • think about where and how to get your message out
  • Warning: Don’t underestimate link building.

  • people underestimate the enormity of the task of link building and the time that it really takes to do it right

  • remember there’s a lot at stake and your competitors are working too, but it works

  1. Give Love

    • If you give links, you should get links
    • Resources page, things we like, etc
  2. Blogging - vital to white hat link building

    • gives you a voice and precence online
    • magnifies your search terms by 100x
    • establishes your authority
    • becomes the platform for content marketing, social media engagement and timely blog posts

      1. Decide who your audience is
      2. Determine categories
      3. Get keyword lists (make keyword lists)
      4. Brainstorm blog post titles from categories and keyword lists
  3. Interview exprerts and others

    • you link to them
    • they link to you
  4. Research your local keyword universe

    • find news sources, experts, associations, forums, blogs, trade shows, events, etc
    • if you get stuck, move on in your relevancy tree
  5. Competitor research

    • download your competitors backlink portfolios (SEOMoz, MajesticSEO) and find the ones that you can duplicate or emulate.
  6. Guest posting

    • Find your target sites

      • use relevancy tree
      • accept posts on your blog

      • Email or call your blogger, offer to contribute

        • Personalized email with title of article or the actual article, Don’t use a canned email
      • send pictures
      • do the work for them
      • When you finally get the post, always ask them for an in content link. Most will say no but they won’t say yes if you don’t ask. Higher to the page and in the middle is best. Bio at top, etc.

      • Promote it

        • Talk about it
      • Tweet about it
      • Sponsored tweets, stumples, ppc
      • Bloggers want engagement and their success is your success
      • Google authorship, tie the article to your google+ account
  7. Write testimonials for your vendors

    • Every good business transaction
    • Send your client an unsolicited testimonial and picture
    • Mention them in your blog
    • Give them some love
  8. Find yourself

    • if you have a well known brand, find mentions of yourself and ask for a link. if you’re there already, ask them to link
  9. Broken link building

    • find broken links that go to similar sites as yours and ask them to link to you instead
  10. Build a museum

    • make a museum of your product, history of your product, glossary, etc
  11. Resource pages - Outreach

    • find the page
    • ask for a link
  12. Badging: create badge awards to give to bloggers, etc

    • Find sub-categories to badge

      • Hall of fame
        • Best of
        • Badge links back to site
      • Top 10 lists
    • Reward best customers
    • Recognize experts
  13. DIY Sites

    • Very content hungry
    • invent a DIY project
    • send it to DIY site
  14. Don’t do forums

  15. Give stuff away
  16. Review everything about your niche
  17. Do something crazy, unique (Giant stuff, big ideas)