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Link Building Fundamentals By Debra Mastaler

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From the Search Marketing Expo - SMX East Conference in New York City, NY, September 29 - October 1, 2015. SESSION: Link Building Fundamentals - Given by Debra Mastaler, @debramastaler, President - Alliance-Link. #SMX #12D

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Link Building Fundamentals By Debra Mastaler

  1. 1. The Art & Science of Building Links Link Building Fundamentals SMX East 2015 Presenter: Debra Mastaler Alliance-Link.com | @debramastaler
  2. 2. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Agenda  Link Popularity  Unnatural Links  Penalties & Disavow  Tactics  Lightening Round
  3. 3. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Algorithms & Link Popularity Algorithms & Link Popularity
  4. 4. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Almost 70% of the world uses Google Most Popular Search Engine ? Desktop Search Engine Market Share August, 2015
  5. 5. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D How Are Pages Ranked? Paid Organic Over 200+ factors contribute • Domain level links • Page level links • Page Level (Title, tags, content) • Mobile • Query data (long & short clicks) • Social media metrics • Location personalization
  6. 6. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Photo credit: https://blogs.agriya.com Most of the changes/filters are done to help define, evaluate and rate links and the pages they come from.
  7. 7. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Popularity Link popularity measures the quality and quantity of links pointing to a webpage. Considered an off-page factor. Engines weigh off-page factors more heavily than on-page*. Slang: Link Juice, Link Love, Link Pop, Link Equity There are four components of link popularity…
  8. 8. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Popularity Quantity Quality Relevance Anchor Text Four components and a lot of moving parts
  9. 9. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D The number of links pointing to a webpage from different websites/pages. Link Quantity
  10. 10. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D X X C X AX X Link Quality Determined by the authority of the host sites and the sites linking to them BX X X Your Website
  11. 11. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Quality All three engines have a formula to measure and compute quality PageRank™ TrustRank NetRank
  12. 12. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D The power of PageRank™ - Yep, it’s still around. What Makes A Quality Page Quality pages have unique characteristics, they show Authority Expertise Trust Algorithms reward quality and factual accuracy*
  13. 13. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Relevance Establishes your topical and/or geographic dominance Baby Strollers Diamond rings Costa Rica Vacation Rentals Viagra
  14. 14. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Relevance Relevance is keyword, relationship andfact based Relevance factors change constantly as the index grows Your relationships may influence what is returned Factual accuracy plays a part in determining relevance*
  15. 15. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Anchor text is the clickable part of the link you see My son and my money go to The College of William & Mary My son spends a lot of money buying college text books. Visit us at www.poor-parents.org for more information. Anchor text is a query ranking factor From Google: “anchor text influences the queries your website ranks for in the search results”. From Bing: “anchor text helps define the theme of a linked page”. An endorsement of what is to come Anchor Text
  16. 16. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Hyperlink when it makes sense Anchor Text Doesn’t matter what you do, if Google thinks your inbound links are anything but editorial, you lose. Make your anchor text part of the conversation
  17. 17. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Your Goal When Building Links: Pages relevant to your target audience Conversational anchors on Quality pages using Secure a lot of links from Quantity Quality Anchor Text Relevance
  18. 18. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Links That RainOnYour Parade Unnatural Links
  19. 19. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D What the search engines (especially Google) want you to avoid “Unnatural” Links • Paid links • Large scale guest posting • Low quality directories • Footer links • Template links • Large-scale reciprocal linking • Press releases • Widgets & badges • Forum drops
  20. 20. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D What To Avoid Avoid these flags and footprints • Do not acquire a lot of the same links quickly • Avoid using same anchors over and over • Avoid linking with low quality pages • Avoid placing links in navigation and sponsored areas • Avoid pages/sites hosting excessive reciprocals and template links • Avoid sites with excessive Adsense • Don’t make directory links (even niche directories) a large part of your portfolio • Avoid sites with no Contact or About Us info
  21. 21. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Think BeforeYou LinkQuestions to ask 1. Is the page hosting your link in the search 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. Is the content relevant to my site? 8. Search “complaint” + URL?
  22. 22. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D WhatTo DoWhenYou Get InTrouble Penalties & Disavow
  23. 23. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Google Penalty Or Algorithm Update? Image courtesy @kikolani If your site disappeared from the search results or lost ranking you either have a manual penalty or have been affected by changes/filters to an algorithm . Not hard to figure out but bad either way
  24. 24. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Manual Action Notice Google love notes in your Search Console… not so sweet.
  25. 25. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Manual Actions Two Types, site-wide and partial Unnatural links pointing to your site Hacked site User generated spam in your blog/forum Thin content with no value Cloaking/spammy redirects Hidden text/keyword stuffing
  26. 26. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Reconsideration For Manual Penalty A good reconsideration request does three things: • Explains the exact quality issue on your site. • Describes the steps you’ve taken to fix the issue. • Documents the outcome of your efforts. Asking Google to review your site after manual penalty (“request a review”)
  27. 27. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D How do you determine which search engine update affected you? https://www.rankranger.com/google-algorithm-updates http://moz.com/google-algorithm-change Google Algorithm Updates History Check Google/OtherAnalytics Rankings Drop DueTo Change In Algorithm
  28. 28. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D STEP 01 STEP 02 STEP 03 STEP 04 STEP 05 Pull Backlinks Use links from WMT and at least one commercial tool. Audit Backlinks List unnatural links in spreadsheet Contact Info Use a tool like URLProfiler to pull email from list of unnatural links Reach Out Ask to remove Repeat after 10 days List no responses (provide details!) Disavow Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Curabitur elementum posuere pretium. It takes Google some time to process the information you’ve uploaded, (weeks!), these links will continue to be shown in your Search Console. Disavow Cleaning up and disavowing links
  29. 29. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Rankings Drop Watch, watch, watch. Watch your backlinks like you watch your rankings! Analyze your website’s backlinks and identify what caused your rankings drop. Once you identify the links, try to remove them Disavow the ones you cannot get removed. Be proactive Don’t wait for a slap down.
  30. 30. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D I highly recommend you avoid using a link removal company that does not fully disclose who they are on their website. (Or any service for that matter) Word Of Caution
  31. 31. Link Building Tactics Tactics
  32. 32. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Remember these three simple facts in link building: 1. It It is less about what you do and more about where. 2. Links help get you ranked but clicks show you deserve to be there. 3. You need to have something worth linking to.
  33. 33. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D QuestionsTo Ask BeforeYou Link And some tools to help Does the page rank well? RankRanger AuthorityLabs Does the site have a varied backlink portfolio RavenTools SEOBook Tool Set OSE Inbound links use a wide variety of anchors? Majestic Ahrefs BacklinkWatch (free) Cache date recent? CachedPages (free) Lots of social signals from several networks? Sendible Buzzsumo Content relevant to yours? Buzzstream
  34. 34. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Building Tactics Link Building Ideas Reclaiming Broken Links Un-Linked Mentions Credibility Links Citation Building Resource Pages Image Gifting Content Outreach (on your site & content you send away) Image Galleries Content Sourcing Author Prospects & Curator Mining Repurposing Content Link Roundups Content Marketing Tactics Foundational Tactics
  35. 35. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Building Tactics Foundational Tactics: Reclaiming Broken Links Un-Linked Mentions Credibility Links Citation Building Resource Pages Image Gifting
  36. 36. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Foundational Links: Links get you ranked but clicks show you deserve to be there. • Help position you as a brand expert and credible, factual source • Identify your brand in an ever-growing link graph • Puts you on credible/authority sources • Tend not to change • Inexpensive to acquire • Content marketing should not be your only link building strategy!!
  37. 37. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Foundational Link Tactic: Reclaiming Broken Links Tools: Citation Labs | Ontolo Tools | Check My Links (Chrome plug-in) Fix what’s broke. Tactic twist: 404 pages
  38. 38. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D FLT: Unlinked Mentions TalkWalker | RankTank Find unlinked mentions of your brand Contact webmaster Ask for hyperlink Not a brand? Find unlinked keyword phrases (where it makes sense) Find mentions of out-of-business competitors
  39. 39. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D . Foundational Link Tactic: Citation Building 1. Find #1 site ranking for your keywords 2. Copy their name, address and telephone number 3. Search using quotes 4. Results are potential sites you can add your information to. 5. “excel spreadsheet” + citation building Use competitors to find sources to add your site to. Tools: WhiteSpark. Mentions Of A Business By Name, Address & Telephone Number. WhiteSpark TIP
  40. 40. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Foundational Link Tactic: Credibility Links Establish trust, sets expertise Establish trust signals • Chamber of Commerce • Industry Associations • Better Business Bureau • Wikipedia*
  41. 41. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D FLT: Resource Pages • Your keyword inurl:links • Your keyword inurl:resources • “useful links” your keyword • “helpful links” your keyword Tool: SoloSEO (no charge) use ‘recommended” function. Anyone think it would be a good idea to offer UTA a more current guide? Find opportunities on academic and government outlets
  42. 42. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Foundational Link Tactic: Image Gifting Giving the gift of an image to an article that needs it • Search for blog posts and magazine articles using your keywords. • Offer photo at no charge • Own the photo!
  43. 43. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Also known as a .gif FLT: Images Good, Cinemagraphs Better• Fun images help sell content • Creates memorable content • Stimulates linking! -------------------------------------- ----------- Make your own http://makeagif.com/ -------------------------------------- ----------- Backlink topical gif’s found in directories: http://giphy.com/search/gif-directoryImagine from nerdist.com/
  44. 44. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Link Building Tactics Using Content Content Marketing Tactics Content Outreach (on your site & content you send away) Image Galleries Content Sourcing Author Prospects & Curator Mining Link Roundups Repurposing Content
  45. 45. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Don’t over do the anchors Best Practice: Using Content To Attract Links Do not over use keyword anchors in posts/articles/bios Hyperlink conversationally. Avoid blog networks. Do not partner with a blog/site not using social media (especially Google Plus and Twitter) Do not partner with a blog/site that does not have an active About Us page. L I N K
  46. 46. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Know what your audience wants to read and where they are reading it. What Is Hot In Content Outreach? Product Reviews Lists Infographics Video Surveys . Roundups
  47. 47. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D MOBILE &TABLET Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It has survived not only five centuries, but also the leap into electronic typesetting, remaining essentially unchanged. Highly sought after written and video content, taps factual ContentTactic: Product Reviews You Create • Written reviews with images are most frequently linked to (the longer the better) • Keep best reviews on your site, promote from there, unless… • Issue press release for substantial reviews • Target social networks for distribution • Bundle reviews into ebooks with email paywall • Reviews dominate on YouTube
  48. 48. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Use what other people have written to gain links Content Tactic: Product Reviews By Others 1. Search for older reviews 2. Back link, look for sources 3. Offer your “newer” review as a source, or 4. Write a comparison piece
  49. 49. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Search for: Daily Link Roundup + keyword Link Roundup + keyword Weekly Link Roundup + keyword • Identify blogs/sites in your niche doing roundups, contact the owner and show your very best content. • Ask to have your content included in the roundup. A collection of favorite posts from around the Web Link Roundups Set an alert and let roundups come to you
  50. 50. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Content Tactic: Image Galleries Let news media and publishers know. Conceptual, factual and historical images.
  51. 51. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Use Flickr to find images to backlink, or host your image gallery, 10 billion images on Flickr, 2 million groups, news mediauses. Content Tactic: Flickr Galleries
  52. 52. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Asking webmasters to link to images they “borrow” Content Tactic: Reclaiming Images
  53. 53. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Get your content added to curation outlets, use to find new sources Content Tactic: Curator Mining Paper.li “paper.li + keyword” Rebel Mouse “rebelmouse + kw” FlipBoard “flipboard + kw” Kw: accounting software
  54. 54. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Look for sources to host your content, look for writers, get yourself pinned, 47% recommend rate Content Tactic: Using Pinterest
  55. 55. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Find the writers, find the sources, hire them to write for you. Content Tactic: Author Prospecting Author Keyword Writer Keyword Guide Keyword Columnist Keyword Contributor Keyword Editor Keyword Freelance Keyword Tool Tip: https://drive.google.com/templates
  56. 56. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Translate or add subtitles to audio/visual content, promote via media and social networks, look for “multicultural” and “international” Content Tactic: Translating Content Webinar Podcas t Video
  57. 57. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Reach wider audience, attract links, drive more traffic, avoids duplicate content issues Content Tactic: Repurposing Content In-depth article with images. Evergreen piece. Product Review 1 3 4 Create presentation on each section, add to SlideShare. Presentation Social Media Snippets Each blog post covers a section of the review. Multiple Blog Posts Create infographic using steps in product review Infographic Extended G+ posts, Tweet series, posts on FB
  58. 58. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D The Lightening Round Insights For 2015 Insights
  59. 59. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It has survived not only five centuries, but also the leap into electronic typesetting, remaining essentially unchanged. Lightening Round: Insights For 2015 APPLICATION • Keep the key components of link popularity in mind when building links. • Don’t scrimp on a copywriter. • Make sure your links sit on mobile friendly sites/pages. • Invest in SEO/link tools after using free trials. • Create evergreen content that has been personalized for your target audience. • Add email capture to everything, look into “content for a tweet”. • Create “Knowledge Vault” quality content. • Site uses nofollow but the link is worth having? Point it to your social profiles for traffic.
  60. 60. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It has survived not only five centuries, but also the leap into electronic typesetting, remaining essentially unchanged. Good tips Lightning Round APPLICATION • Contests, sponsorships, scholarships, etc – all good ideas but one-off, time sensitive tactics. • Follow key media on Twitter and LinkedIn. Engage! • Fax press releases directly to media, forget the press release submission outlets. • Local media outlets love, love, love interviews • Media doesn’t link out except when they have to. Images are that exception • HARO (Help A Reporter Out) great resource but be quick! <3 hours • HARO not the only site of its kind, do “similar” search
  61. 61. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It has survived not only five centuries, but also the leap into electronic typesetting, remaining essentially unchanged. My best tip Lightning Round APPLICATION Keep an eye on the sites ranking behind you. Yes, that’s right, behind you. They are the webmasters looking to unseat you, they want your spot in the serps. Watch what they are doing, follow on social media. Load their domain/brand names in your alert services. Keep an eye on the sites ranking behind you.
  62. 62. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D For a list of customized content sources and link building consultations, visit www.alliance-link.com Debra Mastaler Quality means doing it right when no one is looking. ~Henry Ford
  63. 63. searchmarketingexpo.com @DebraMastaler #SMX #12D https://www.netmarketshare.com/search-engine-market-share.aspx?qprid=4&qpcustomd=0 http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2007/03/get-more-complete-picture-about-how.html http://www.bing.com/webmaster/help/webmaster-guidelines-30fba23a http://arxiv.org/pdf/1502.03519v1.pdf http://makeagif.com/ http://www.marketingpilgrim.com/2014/03/pinterest-encourages-shoppers-with-new-gift-feed.html http://expandedramblings.com/index.php/flickr-stats/ Resources

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