It is no secret that link building times have changed. Google doesn’t want to be gamed–Google watches what SEOs are doing and then they filter and penalize trends for ranking that don’t truly benefit the user. If you rank for a commercial phrase, you are more likely to be above the radar, and the more valuable the phrase is, the more above the radar you are. Even today, there are plenty of practices that SEOs are employing that can result in ranking problems and site penalties. Google is connecting sources, influencers and industries–are your goals in line with Google’s?
Things heard all the time at SEO conferences:
“We only do white hat link building”
“These are the five phrases I’m targeting”
“We’ve already got the low hanging fruit links, like directories and forum links”
White Hat and chasing the short tail keyword and contradictory ideas. Stop using exact match anchor text!
A few link building myths:
- There are hundreds of directories
- There are hundreds of article syndication sites
- There are hundreds of blog reviews
- There are hundreds of guest posts
- There are hundreds of forum comments
When you do comment on blogs, be aware of the other comments on posts and make sure you aren’t posting among other links like payday loans, gambling, and other frowned upon topics.
Becoming a resource is always recommended, and providing guides and learning materials is a great method for establishing authority. Don’t let dry topics hinder your content and link strategy, be creative and explore ideas like interviews, lists, blogs, quizzes, contests, and many many more.
Branding is key to success. You don’t want to look like a thing affiliate site, you want real links spread to various areas of your site. Excessive links to product pages is frowned upon, you want many pages with a few links a piece. Do brands worry about getting links? In the beginning, yes. But as your brand evolves and builds an audience, the links should come naturally. Repeat users share information and keep coming back to valuable things you are creating. Brands are talked about in real time by real people. Think in terms of tweets, follows, and likes rather than obsessing about links.
- Identify your community, no matter your niche
- Build relationships in those communities
- Make friends with the community and have real relationships
- Identify influencers and become their friends
- Find brand/product evangelists
Erika Thomas is an SEO copywriter and link building specialist at Tandem Interactive. Thomas also operates fashion blog Blah Blah Blonde and is a freelance writer. Her Twitter handle is @itsmeerikat.
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