Link Marketing Fundamentals - The Art & Science of Links by Debra Mastaler


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From SMX East 2013 - SMX Boot Camp: Link Building Fundamentals - Link Marketing: the Art & Science of Links by @DebraMastaler - #SMX #12A

Slide deck from Debra Mastaler of Alliance Link.

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Link Marketing Fundamentals - The Art & Science of Links by Debra Mastaler

  1. 1. LINK MARKETING FUNDAMENTALS: THE ART & SCIENCE OF LINKS # Debra Mastaler Alliance Link @debramastaler #SMX #12A October 1, 2013 #
  2. 2. Link Building Bootcamp The art and science of links. Debra Mastaler @debramastaler
  3. 3. WELCOME! • Slides on SMX Slideshare • Q&A at end of session • Tweet this session But! Please respect request not to tweet • This presentation is copyrighted • Check out my blog: © @debramastaler #SMX
  4. 4. AGENDA. © @debramastaler #SMX  Concept of link popularity  Trends – what to avoid  Tactics
  5. 5. Part One
  6. 6. SearchEngineRankings August2013 67.0% 17.9% 11.4% 2.6 % 1.3% © @debramastaler #SMX
  7. 7. @debramastaler #SMX© 200+RankingFactors organic Paid
  8. 8. 200+ Ranking Factors-accordingtoGoogle @debramastaler #SMX©
  9. 9. 200+RankingFactorsaccordingtoGoogle @debramastaler #SMX©
  10. 10. @debramastaler #SMX©
  11. 11. @debramastaler #SMX© 200+RankingFactors accordingtoGoogle
  12. 12. @debramastaler #SMX© Link Popularity
  13. 13. @debramastaler #SMX© Link popularity measures the quality and quantity of links pointing to a page. Considered an off-page factor Slang:
  14. 14. Link Popularity? @debramastaler #SMX© Quantity Quality Relevance Anchor Text
  15. 15. LinkQuantity the number of links pointing to a webpage from different websites/pages. @debramastaler #SMX©
  16. 16. Link Quality determined by the authority of the host sites and the sites linking to them. @debramastaler #SMX© Your page Site X Site A Site B Site Y Site C Quality flows from one page/site to the next through links
  17. 17. Link Quality All three engines have a formula to measure and compute quality: @debramastaler #SMX© PageRank™ TrustRank NetRank
  18. 18. Relevance Works to establish your topical and/or geographic dominance @debramastaler #SMX© Links to and from contextually relevant or thematically related sites convey more authority. Baby Strollers Diamond rings Viagra Off topic Off topic Off topic Off topic Baby StrollersBaby Strollers Baby Strollers
  19. 19. Relevance linking out and being linked to establishes a connection @debramastaler #SMX© From Google…”In the same way Google trusts sites less when they link to spammy sites…, parts of our system encourage links to good sites.” Avoid getting links from: Low quality Poorly ranked Off topic Avoid linking to: Low quality Poorly ranked Off topic
  20. 20. Anchor Text @debramastaler #SMX©  The clickable part of the link you see My child and my money go to The University of Virginia. My son spends a lot of money buying college text books. Visit us at for more information.  An endorsement of what is to come
  21. 21. Anchor Text isa query ranking indicator @debramastaler #SMX© From the official Google blog: …”anchor text influences the queries your site ranks for in the search results…” From the official Bing blog: …”anchor text helps define the theme of a linked page…” + Ranking weight + Semantic value
  22. 22. @debramastaler #SMX© Your Goal When Building Links: Secure a lot of links from (quantity) Quality pages using (quality) Appropriate anchors on (anchor text) Thematically related pages (relevance)
  23. 23. Social Media Influence in the ranking process @debramastaler #SMX©
  24. 24. SocialSignalsandthe Bing™ Algorithm @debramastaler #SMX©
  25. 25. SocialSignalsandtheGoogleAlgorithm @debramastaler #SMX© Does Google+ influence search rankings?? Total integration 100 million+ active users Another way to judge influence of a link and the value of content “If you make compelling content, people will link to it, like it, share it on Facebook, +1 it, etc. But that doesn’t mean that Google is using those signals in our ranking. Rather than chasing +1s of content, your time is much better spent making great content.”
  26. 26. SEOvalue: whenyoupostonG+,contentisindexedquickly… @debramastaler #SMX© rel-author attribute (The other end of this link represents the author this content is coming from)
  27. 27. @debramastaler #SMX© Revised:Your GoalWhenBuildingLinks: Secure a lot of links from (quantity) Quality pages using (quality) Appropriate anchors on (anchor text) Thematically related pages using (relevance) Established social media profiles (G+)
  28. 28. Part Two • Anchor text devalued • Cleaning up “bad” links • Flags and footprints
  29. 29. Anchor Text Devalued @debramastaler #SMX© …” creating links that weren’t editorially placed… can be considered a violation of our guidelines. Here are a few common examples of unnatural links… press releases distributed on other sites. …” Press release links
  30. 30. Anchor Text Devalued …”The following are examples of link schemes… Large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor text links…” @debramastaler #SMX© Guest blogging links
  31. 31. Getting Out Of Link Jail @debramastaler #SMX© Manual Spam report/Google reviews Notified in GWT Search traffic  manual reviews • comment spam • Unnatural links • Poor quality content • Kw stuffing/hidden text Reconsideration request Algorithmic Ranking changes No note No review request needed Fix low quality, over optimized links 2+ months to see results
  32. 32. Trends – Flags and Footprints @debramastaler #SMX© • Do not acquire a lot of links quickly • Do not secure the same type of link over and over • Avoid using same anchors over and over • Avoid linking with low quality pages • Stay out of known networks • Avoid placing links in navigation and sponsored areas • Avoid pages/sites hosting excessive reciprocals and site-wides • Avoid sites with ads above the fold or excessive Adsense • Don’t use alpha directories or a directory mentioning the word SEO • Avoid sites with no Contact or About Us info
  33. 33. Think Before You Link |Questions to ask before placing links @debramastaler #SMX© 1. Is the page your link will sit on in the index? 2. Been cached lately? 3. Do they use nofollow attributes? 4. Does the website participate in social media? 5. Does the webpage rank for relevant keywords 6. Is the website tied to a network? 7. How many ads are on the page? 8. Is the content relevant to my site? It doesn’t matter what you do, it matters where you do it.
  34. 34. Part Three @debramastaler #SMX©
  35. 35. Whatisthebestandsafestwaytobuildlinks? @debramastaler #SMX© Reinforce link & social popularity Drive traffic and social signals Build brand
  36. 36. WhatToKeepInMindWhenBuildingLinks @debramastaler #SMX© Keep your best content on your site Promote new content through social, especially G+ Look for partner sites with social profiles, especially G+ Add email capture to everything Two words: Link. Popularity
  37. 37. Link Building Tactics |What is working? @debramastaler #SMX© Attraction Content Reviews Key Tips Content Sourcing Guest blogging Article sourcing Universal Images Foundational Directory submissions Broken links Reclaiming links Credibility links It doesn’t matter what you do, it matters where you do it.
  38. 38. @debramastaler #SMX© Foundational Credibility links Establish trust signals: Chamber of Commerce Better Business Bureau Industry associations
  39. 39. @debramastaler #SMX© Establish and support local links and signals: List of 50 local business directories WhiteSpark Local Citation Finder Foundational Credibility links
  40. 40. Video Articles Coupons Photos Contests Downloads Employment BlogAffiliate Foundational Links | Niche Directories
  41. 41. @debramastaler #SMX© Directory Source General Affiliate Blog Coupons Downloads Photos RSS Video Avoid using free general directories and making directory links a large % of your backlinks. Foundational Directory submissions
  42. 42. @debramastaler #SMX© Foundational Broken links Reclaiming links Replace broken links on other people’s pages with your links. Tool Free/Paid Chrome Plug-in (Check My Links) free Ontolo paid Citation Labs paid
  43. 43. @debramastaler #SMX© Universal Image links Offer images and/or content in exchange for link credit Search for blogs (keyword + blog) You must own the image!
  44. 44. @debramastaler #SMX© Universal Image links Cinemagraphs = animated GIF format. Inexpensive alternative to video
  45. 45. @debramastaler #SMX© Universal Image links  Create an on-site photo gallery  Offer images in exchange for links to your customer list first  Issue press release when gallery goes live
  46. 46. @debramastaler #SMX© Universal Image links When you find someone using your image without linking back, write and ask for the link. tisk tisk….
  47. 47. @debramastaler #SMX© Content Sourcing Guest blogging How do I get influential bloggers to accept my guest post? Mutual friend introduction Point of commonality Showcase past writing Flaunt Twitter/Facebook/G+ followers
  48. 48. @debramastaler #SMX© Content Sourcing Guest blogging Prospecting for blogs Keyword + Submit a guest post Keyword + join writing staff Keyword + Submit an article Keyword + Contribute to our site Keyword + Write for us Keyword + Suggest a guest post Keyword + guest writer Keyword + Submit blog post Tools: SoloSEO Link (free) | Link Prospector | Ontolo Directories: Google Blog Directory, Technorati Blog Directory Blogrolls Tip: Lock in your blogging gigs
  49. 49. @debramastaler #SMX© Content Sourcing Article sourcing Q: Where can I find quality sources (not blogs) to host my content? A: Find authors and you’ll find sources Author + Keyword Writer Keyword Guide Keyword Columnist Keyword Contributor Keyword Editor Keyword Freelance writer Keyword
  50. 50. @debramastaler #SMX© Content Sourcing Article sourcing Where else can I find authors and article sources? Wikipedia Association directories eBook directories Topix Magazine lists ( Sharon Naylor – written for 7 magazines and 14 blogs Great way to find a copywriter
  51. 51. @debramastaler #SMX© Attraction Content Product Reviews Keep your best material on your site Promote: 1. via email 2. social networks 3. media Turn best content into permanent pages Evergreen!
  52. 52. @debramastaler #SMX© Attraction Content Product reviews Written (with images) and video best Create presos (Slideshare) and infographics Create Pinterest/Flickr with images Bundle review into ebooks The content gift that keeps on giving…
  53. 53. Little tip that works every time Back link any video with high views and comments using your keywords in You Tube and Google. @debramastaler #SMX©
  54. 54. @debramastaler #SMX© Tip Lightening Round • Turn all written content into Podcasts, upload to iTunes and podcast directories • Widgets not a good idea unless you can control where they are placed. • Contests, sponsorships, scholarships, etc – all good ideas but one-off tactic. • Follow key media on Twitter, engage. • Fax press releases directly to media, forget the release outlets. • Find an SEO forum/community and start listening/sharing. • Use instead of Google Alerts. • Circle Count tool to find G+ influencers.
  55. 55. Key Takeaways: @debramastaler #SMX© 1. Keep the key components of link popularity in mind when building links. 2. Always look for partner sites with social sharing especially G+. 3. Don’t scrimp on a copywriter. 4. Invest in SEO/link tools after using free trials 5. Budget the bulk of your resources into creating evergreen content. 6. Add email capture to everything, put content behind it or “content for a tweet”. 7. Remember… it’s not what you do, it’s where you do it that matters.
  56. 56. Thank you! Debra Mastaler ADDRESS : Fairfax Station, Virginia EMAIL : WWW : @debramastaler Alliance-Link on Facebook Google+ I specialize in creating targeted link marketing plans for large and small business. If you need a list of content ideas and titles plus a list of sites to contact for placement, check out my Link Building Blueprint program on ~Debra
  57. 57. # see more presentations at: #
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