Link Building: Basics And Beyond
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Link Building: Basics And Beyond

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Presentation delivered to the Arizona Real Estate Bloggers Network Sept 26, 2008

Presentation delivered to the Arizona Real Estate Bloggers Network Sept 26, 2008

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  • 1. Link Building: The Basics & Beyond Jay Thompson PhoenixRealEstateGuy.com 480-235-4447
  • 2. Linkation Linkation Linkation
    • Dustin Luther, the real estate Blogfather, summed it up well in his December 2005 post, “ Linkation Linkation Linkation ”.
    • “ Linking to other sites is critical to building up your site’s credibility with other bloggers. Join in some of the wonderful conversations that makes up the web and you’ll likely find that more and more people begin to link to your site. Find a blog you really like and then write articles about their articles! Link back to them and you’ll be surprised how quickly they start linking back to you! It’s actually a lot of fun to be part of this process.”
  • 3. Links – What and Why?
    • A hyperlink, more commonly called a link, is an electronic connection between one web page to either (1) other web pages on the same web site, (2) web pages located on another web site, or (3) to another part of the same page.
    • Three basic types of links:
      • Inbound / Backlinks: Links from other sites pointing to your site
      • Outbound: Links on your site pointing to other sites
      • Internal: Links on your site pointing to another place on your site
  • 4. Link Terms
    • Link building: The process of getting quality web sites to link to your web site, in order to improve search engine rankings.
    • Anchor text: The words in a hyperlink. The text usually gives visitors or search engines important information on what the page being linked to is about.
    • Reciprocal / 2 - way link: “I’ll link to you if you link to me”.
    • 3, 4, 5-way links: Linking schemes designed to fool search engines. Hint: some really smart people work at Google.
    • Link farm: Sites/pages with dozen of links. Built for the sole purpose of increasing search results. Often has opposite effect. Bad. Spam. Avoid.
    • Link bait: Any content or feature within a website that somehow baits viewers to place links to it from other websites. Lauded or applauded depending on who you talk to and how it is done.
    • Link Popularity: A raw count of how "popular" a page is based on the number of backlinks/inbound links it has. It does not factor in link context or link quality, which are also important elements in how search engines make use of links to impact rankings.
    • Deep Links: Links to internal pages (not your home page). Good stuff. One reason blogs tend to do better in search engines than static sites.
    • SERPs: Search Engine Results Page. What is returned in a search. Where you rank for a search term
    Some definitions from Anvil Media’s Glossary
  • 5. Why I Focus on Google (actual search engine referrals to TPREG this year)
  • 6. Why are links important?
    • Inbound: A significant portion of the algorithm search engines use appears to place importance on the number and quality of links to a site or page.
    • Outbound: Helps establish your “web cred” (I just made that up). Helps your readers. Doesn’t do much (if anything) for SERPs.
    • Internal: Better navigation for user. “Revive” older articles. “Sculpting” PageRank – advanced technique, easier to screw up than do right.
    • Good source for why links are important . (http://www.fonerbooks.com/links.htm)
  • 7. The Power of Inbound Links
    • In addition to increasing SERPs, readers will follow links to your pages.
  • 8. Is getting links the most important thing you can do for your blog?
  • 9. NO!
  • 10.
    • Quality content is.
    • Ultimately of course, getting clients is the goal.
    • But great content can lead to links, which leads to search engine placement, which leads to clients.
    • It’s a chicken and egg kinda thing…
  • 11. Anchor Text Explained
    • Anchor text = the words that make up a link
      • This is anchor text
    • SEs “see” your anchor text and attach relevance to it.
      • So there is good anchor text and basically worthless anchor text.
      • Many experts also feel the words before and after the anchor text are valuable.
    • Basically worthless: “ Click here for a great article”
    • Good: “You can search Phoenix homes here”
    • You control anchor text to internal and outbound links.
    • You can’t control anchor text on inbound links (but it can be influenced…)
  • 12. Influencing Inbound Links
    • Many times, when a blogger links to you, they will use the title of your post:
      • “ Jay Thompson wrote an amazing article, ‘ How to Search for Phoenix Homes Online ’”.
      • So keep keywords in mind for titles (it helps in other ways too).
    • But they may just do this:
      • “ Jay Thompson wrote an amazing article ”.
    • Not much you can do about it…
    • Practice using good anchor text for your outbound links. Some will notice. What goes around comes around.
    • Any (almost any) inbound link is good, so don’t sweat the small stuff…
  • 13. Find Who is Linking to You
    • Yahoo! seems to keep better track than Google
      • Go to Yahoo.com and search for Linkdomain:url.com
      • Example
    • Google Analytics (some good analytics are a must have ).
    • Technorati.com (a Google for blogs)
  • 14. What do people link to?
    • Content – interesting (to them or their readers), unique, something that evokes strong emotion (agreement or disagreement), something that is a PITA to do themselves (complex chart or research).
    • People they know
    • People they like
    • “Link Bait”
  • 15. Link Bait Topics
    • Top 10 Lists
    • Event reviews
    • Interviews
    • Trend-Spotting/Scooping
    • Industry related humor (be careful)
    • Controversy / Criticism
    • Product reviews
    • Charts / Data Collection / Surveys
    • Check lists
    • More at http://www.seomoz.org/article/bg5#5d
  • 16. Blog Commenting
    • nofollow / dofollow
      • Most blogs are “nofollow” – links in comments are not followed by search engines
      • Some blogs are dofollow
    • Finding dofollow blogs
      • Google “dofollow blogs”
      • Real Estate: http://www.ericbramlett.com/blog/do-follow-real-estate-blogs/
      • Bumpzee “No Nofollow” community: http://www.bumpzee.com/no-nofollow/
  • 17. Blog Commenting
    • Don’t, PLEASE don’t just comment for the sake of links.
      • Comment to contribute to the article
      • Comment to network
      • Comment to learn
      • Don’t contribute to comment spam, there is enough of that out there – they don’t need any help.
    • A great comment on a nofollow blog is worth more than a lousy comment on some dofollow blog.
  • 18. Other Tactics
    • Guest Post: either direction – you post somewhere, invite a guest to your place.
    • Directories: be careful. Some are not what they seem. Use aged, respected directories that use proper linkage.
    • Blogrolls: pros and cons
    • Ask
    • Article Submissions / Press Releases
    • Blog Carnivals
      • Carnival of Real Estate: http:// www.carnivalofrealestate.com /
      • Countless others: http:// blogcarnival.com/bc/index.php
    • Participate in the “social web” – forums, blogs, microblogs, social networks.
  • 19. Summary
    • Links are important
    • Links are not the only thing
    • Building links takes time. And effort. There is no magic pill.
    • Writing good content and being an active part of the community is the primary factor in real estate blog link building.
  • 20. Useful Links
    • Dustin Luther: Linkation Linkation Linkation
      • READ this post!
    • SEOMOZ.org : Beginners Guide to SEO
      • Lots of other articles . Many free, some not.
    • SEOBook.com : Bloggers Guide to SEO
    • Directories
      • Search Engine Journal list
      • Google “blog directories”
      • Many require reciprocal links. Check to make sure they provide valid, crawlable links!
    • Top Whatever Lists
      • http://www.top100realestateblogs.com/
      • Jon Washburn on ActiveRain monthly list
    • Article Submission Sites – Google it. DON’T Spam them! Use manual submission, not automated. Free and $$$