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Yahoo - Where to Start with Link SEO
treeline




msg:821890
 7:18 pm on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

Continued from:
[webmasterworld.com...]


Where do you start?

There's lots of ways to get more links. All the good ones involve work, but stick at it and it can be done:

  • Request a listing at dmoz.org

  • Search Yahoo or Google for "keywords add url" or "my industry submit site" to find related directories

  • Look for related businesses that you aren't in direct competition with, call or email them personally and ask about swapping links. If you're a hotel, do this with local restaurants and museums. If you're a bank, swap links with realtors and auto dealers.

  • Write articles (with embedded links) and send them out as press releases. Some will show them on their site.

  • Ask all your friends. All of them.

  • Sometimes forums (not this one) or blogs let you add a signature with your link. Participate meaningfully and this is tolerated. These may not be the best links, but they can help, especially as you control the link text.

  • Become an active regular participant in a forum on your subject. Reply to posts, be seen as an expert on the subject. You'll make friends amongst the other participants who will then be interested in helping you and linking to you.

  • Learn to use the forum's codes so you can put deep links to your interior pages that answer detailed questions. Use good keyworded link text. Should look like the next bullet:

  • Use Yahoo's site explorer [siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com] to research who your competition has links from, call them up and ask if you can swap links too.

  • When you're bored working on your site, browse the web looking over what the competition has done. Look for chances to get links from them, or follow where they're linking to, many of which pages will be good places to ask for links.

  • Be patient. This takes a while. Be tolerant, many people will be agreeable but not get around to it. Remind politely after a while, but if they still don't get to it, forget them and keep going. I've seen friends get all wound up because someone has too much of a life to get around to updating their website. Just find new sites to ask.

  • Try to get the attention of local media. Getting picked up by a newspaper, even an "alternative" one can get you some very valuable links. Get interviewed, tell a colorful story.

  • Offer to write articles for other sites that could use them. Embed good links within them. Associations and other authorities often desperately need good material and have great rank with search engines. You could be their best friend, and vice versa.

  • Be a pal. Offer to create basic websites for a few friends. Now that they love you, they won't mind a link or two back to such a nice guy (or gal).

  • Get to know some bloggers. They're becoming a major linking force. Tell them a colorful story so they can write something good about you.

  • Create useful content on your site that others interested in the subject will want to link to on their own. You'll start to get links you don't know about until the referrals show up in your log.

  • Best of all, create link bait: a feature or function so useful to your audience that people just have to link to it. This is usually interactive. If you're into kites, a wind forecaster. Do pharmaceuticals? If they enter all their drugs, it finds any possible interactions. Baseball cards? A value projector of what cards for drafted (but not yet playing) players cards will be worth in 5 years. Who can resist checking, even if future results are not guaranteed?

  • Try being controversial. If you write why it's best to retire on $7 dollars a month for life, all the finance blogs are going to make fun of you with links to your opinion.

  • Keep trying. Keep asking. Stick at it.

    Then one day, others will be saying how it's no fair you're at the top just because you've been around a while. They won't understand it was hard work, and they won't think it's fair they don't rank at the top just because they had the clever idea of creating a new site.

    [edited by: Brett_Tabke at 12:53 pm (utc) on May 16, 2006]

  •  

    F_Rose




    msg:821891
     10:35 pm on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Treeline,

    Great post. Looking forward to get working on this major project. Hopeful to get results?

    "especially as you control the link text."

    What do you mean with the above?

    Thank you.

    treeline




    msg:821892
     11:09 pm on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

    F_Rose,

    Link text (the blue underlined words you click on) are given a lot of credit by search engines in determining what the target page is about. So you'd rather have link text like: discount blue widgets than something like: Fred's Website.

    When you ask someone for a link, no matter what you say, they often use whatever link text they feel like. Well, it's their website, so that's OK. But you'd really rather they kept it close to good keywords or phrases.

    When you are writing a post on a forum, or setting up your signature on a forum, you get to choose the link text used. That's what I meant. Choose wisely.

    adamovic




    msg:821893
     5:35 am on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    When you are writing a post on a forum, or setting up your signature on a forum, you get to choose the link text used.

    The only issue is that nowadays Google automaticly detects Forums and rank those pages at PR0. So I'm not quite sure how much PR0 links counts (even if they have good text).

    sem4u




    msg:821894
     1:00 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    The only issue is that nowadays Google automaticly detects Forums and rank those pages at PR0. So I'm not quite sure how much PR0 links counts (even if they have good text).

    Where did you hear this? I have seen some forum pages that allow signatures with at least PR3 recently!

    Webwork




    msg:821895
     1:37 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Google automaticly detects Forums and rank those pages at PR0

    STOP! Just stop! Break the vicious cycle of thinking links = PR = ranking =

    There was a time when a link was a vote of website quality/character. Wouldn't it be something to go back in link-time before a link was a magic charm for manipulating PR?

    Try getting your head aligned with this model:

    Links = traffic = opportunity to create awareness that your website presents real value to the visitor = visitor appreciation = visitor generated buzz/word-of-mouth/email referrals = media pick-up = more visitors/traffic and more natural links = more traffic = the happy, productive exponential growth of links cycle

    IF the manner in which you initially, proactively generate/spread links isn't an offense and is handled in a manner that invites the perception that the link is a bona fide vote (not spam, not pure self-promotion) then the early links just might do their job.

    The hell with PR. Operate like search engines don't exist. Operate like what matters is people. Then, it may just be possible that as a result of people liking your website the search engines will also like your website. At least that's the way I thought it was supposed to work. Pity the poor search engine that can't configure its algorithm to rank websites that people actually value.

    wmuser




    msg:821896
     2:47 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Nice post treeline

    bwnbwn




    msg:821897
     3:07 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Webwork
    good post as I really believe by developing links the way you describe is actually what all the search engines have as the natural linking method. I stll go out and try to get some links from sites I want my customers to look at for informational reasons. But as far as linking it isn't worth the time anymore as it has gotten to the point of blackhat linking and I really don't want to worry with all the issues...Sites change and become a drag rather than one that helps

    Manga




    msg:821898
     3:42 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Excellent post Webwork. I agree with you 150%. I wish everyone thought as clearly as you do.

    sugarrae




    msg:821899
     3:46 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Webwork - will you marry me?

    ;-)

    julinho




    msg:821900
     3:52 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Great post, treeline and Webwork.

    I just wonder why this thread is on the Yahoo forum. These techniches apply to every SE.

    jessejump




    msg:821901
     4:02 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    >>>>> Then, it may just be possible that as a result of people liking your website the search engines will also like your website. At least that's the way I thought it was supposed to work. Pity the poor search engine that can't configure its algorithm to rank websites that people actually value.

    How can they? As soon as anyone and everyone figures out what SEs are looking for they all manipulate for it. People going crazy over Header tags, people selling, buying, developing links and image text replacement (whoever heard of a negative 2000 left margin/). It goes on and on.
    It's all OK when "we" do it, but not when "they" do it.

    treeline




    msg:821902
     4:17 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    There's two sides to Webwork's suggestion, and I support both of them. Certainly building a site that people want to use and are excited about enough to want to link to it spontaneously can't be beat and is the best path to long term success.

    Many small businesses are desperate to be found on the internet, and perplexed as to why they don't turn up. Not even for their formal name, or for widget repair in East Overshoe, South Dakota. Even a widget repairer with unusually clever web skills might wait a long time to get many links. They need a few good links, and they'll turn up well enough if they're not in too cutthroat an area.

    I often get asked by people like this why Yahoo/Google/etc doesn't list them. They think their site is broken or useless, or the SEs are. Some spend a lot of money going to seminars and hiring web designers without ever being given the basic truth: Get some links and your website will be findable. The more the better, but even a few can get it started.

    If you want to make the kind of good living off the web that some hint about in these forums, pay close attention to Webwork's suggestion, and note that the above list has many ideas that will accomplish this. The original question I was responding to was how to get started on getting links.

    A few statistics that show the relative value of different kinds of content for one of my sites:

    Overall traffic:

  • Direct 18%
  • Referral 10%
  • Search Engine 72% (thousands of keyword combos)

    For a cool interactive linkbait feature:

  • Direct 51%
  • Referral 23%
  • Search Engine 26% (most entered name of website)

    So what type of content gets you the most repeat traffic, and isn't prone to the whims of the search engines? Clearly good, original useful content. It does draw links. Note the higher referral numbers.

    But that doesn't mean lots of sites can't benefit by going and asking for links from a variety of sources.

    note: Direct traffic is bookmarked or typed in, Referral is from clicking on a link at another website, and Search Engine is from searching.

  • Webwork




    msg:821903
     4:24 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Webwork - will you marry me?

    My S.E.O.* advises "No outbound links!"

    Significantly Engaged Other

    treeline




    msg:821904
     4:30 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Google automaticly detects Forums and rank those pages at PR0

    Believe this if you want. It may even be true of some forums, or certain forum software, I don't know. What I do know is that clear jumps in traffic follow certain posts for specific keywords on a number of forums. In a good forum some of it is referrals from the forum. Most of it shows up from the search engines though. As I said, they're not the best links, but they do help.

    Webwork




    msg:821905
     4:34 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    My $.02: Think co-promotion, collective interest, mutual real benefit. The business world is a somewhat clustered, somewhat cloistered, mutual aide and benefit society type of place, where the referrals are real indicia of a vote of confidence and/or quality.

    A referral in the real business world is likely close to the model you want to emulate in your web based business.

    What distinguishes referrals in the real live business world? All the talk about "authority sites" and related topics is likely more akin to what happens in the day-to-day business world than many of you appreciate.

    All those tangential, remote, off theme, outlier links that you garner may add weight that sinks your website instead of causing your website to rise up.

    davidyin




    msg:821906
     7:29 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    So good guide for newbies like me.

    ronburk




    msg:821907
     8:19 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    The hell with PR.

    Yeah, the hell with ever getting visited by Googlebot!

    :-)

    Webwork




    msg:821908
     9:27 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Enlightened SEO is a fable. Only search suffering is real: Webmasters are a lot that is destined to suffer - about not getting inbound links, suffer about the latest Google update, suffer about the next update, suffer about ranking, suffer about algo cracking, suffer about SE traffic going down, suffer about links not counting, suffer about penalties, suffer about lost Pagerank . . .

    All is suffering.

    OTOH . .

    "Live as if search engines did not exist" is a koan [google.com]. One must detach oneself from Pagerank if one is ever to find One-ness with the SERPs . . .

    But that's crazy, right?

    "I want to be a happy idiot and struggle for the legal tender" . . . . Now THAT's enlightenment.

    ken_b




    msg:821909
     9:57 pm on May 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

    The hell with PR.

    Yeah, the hell with ever getting visited by Googlebot!

    Saying the hell with PR and getting the bot to visit are NOT mutually exclusive.

    Links placed with a foucus on generating traffic are also likely to end up on pages that get bot visits often enough to take care of showing the bot the way to your site. Bots are traffic too ya know. :)

    Yogesh Sarkar




    msg:821910
     1:22 am on May 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

    thanks for the info treeline :)

    fred9989




    msg:821911
     9:05 am on May 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Nice post, thanks.
    Just a small point - links need to be chosen carefully, so they aren't to/from industries too far apart. The latest comments on Matt Cutts' blog make it very clear that irrelevant links may lead to a swift slide down the ratings under the new Google regime (and I take it he isn't just referring to link farms).
    But a really good and helpful post, thanks.
    Rod

    aleksl




    msg:821912
     7:15 pm on May 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Webwork,

    "There is no Search Engine"

    There's a path tha leads out of suffering

    treeline




    msg:821913
     12:30 am on May 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

    On Matt Cutts' blog he makes the following suggestion for 'good' ways to get links that should help you whatever search engine changes come along:

    As far as how to get back links, things like offering tools (robots.txt checkers), information (newsletters, blogs), services, or interesting hooks (e.g. seobuzzbox doing interviews) can really jumpstart links.

    Building up a reputation with a community helps (doing forums on your own site or participating in other forums can help).

    As far as hooks, I’d study things like digg, slashdot, reddit, techmeme, tailrank to get an idea of what captures people’s attention. For example, contests and controversy attract links, but can be overused. That would be my quick take.

    He's with Google, not Yahoo, but the ideas should be solid anywhere.

    abacuss




    msg:821914
     6:32 am on May 19, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Nice post treeline...but do you think its always possible to get links related to the product.

    I mean forums are a good way to get links but then if google considers a PR0 for them then its of no use.

    huned2001




    msg:821915
     7:47 am on May 22, 2006 (gmt 0)

    Everything is good but the problem i am facing is that from when i have submited site map to yahoo they have not crawled my website.. can anybody tell me what is the problem.. link sttucture and everything is good though they have not crawled the website.. please guide me...

    voices




    msg:821916
     11:14 am on May 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

    How bout we have a 6 month moratorium on trying to manipulate the search engines? Remove all things from your sites that are there only to gain search rank. Google won't know what to do since their algo is based on trying to eliminate spammers rather than trying to find good sites. When the 6 months is up and Google is kicking back thinking they have solved the problem, we can attack.

    adamovic




    msg:821917
     7:19 pm on May 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

    I used to had one site in niche A and other site in niche B.
    I've found very hard to obrain links for those niches.
    But now I've created on site which have several topics. For some of the topics it seems it is quite easy to obtain the one-way link.

    Anyway, I feel stupid when I have to send 30-40 emails by hand asking for the link. It needs 2-3 hours and I got 2-3 links. Somehow I feel a bit stupid doing that. But when I see that some people like my site and they respond sincerely I feel better.

    But anyway, those "chaise for links campains" are stupid to me. But there is no other way. If your main page is indexed in search engine it means nobody knows about your site.

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