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Wow, time sure fly's! Many of you probibly have not seen me around much. I got my start about three years ago with my little hobby culinary site and started to transition to more commerical affiliate type sites and had some excellent success.
I sure learned a lot at webmasterworld.com, when I got my start I spent much of my time trying to learn basic seo ....
- on page factors
- link structure
- keyword research
- link pop and pagerank issues
- ect ....
Really all the stuff you need to know to be able to create quality "commerical" content, launch a site and drive traffic.
I did quite well and still am able to earn a heck of a lot more than I did with my 9 - 5 chef gig. Plus I enjoy being able to work when I want and not having to answer to anyone but myself. I was also able to put myself In an affiliate managment position with a quality run company and that has been wonderful.
However, this year has been tough.... every three to four months google introduces an even trickeir algo and my traffic has steadily dropped. I hear a lot about sandbox, hill top, and local link algo, new site "penalties" and what not.
So about two weeks ago I came out of my "create another new site" mode and started reading around. I have been back here at webmasterworld often, just listen to an excellent course on seo and have come up with some ideas.
I want my traffic back, I am planning my 2005 attack now. Right now my thinking is create fewer sites in 05 and spend A TON MORE TIME on linking and developing quality back links that are "natural".
Any ideas? Comments?
A agree. Google has been clever recently, hats (especially black) off to them.
I suspect that when a site starts to get serious traffic, it hits some form of radar, maybe even human review, so overall site quality is becoming more important.
I know there are a lot of sites out there, but imagine Google employed 20 reviewers, looking at top 100,000 alexa sites at a rate of 7000 per day. Many of these sites could have 10,000+ pages = a lot of pages being wiped off the index!
As my site is travel related, I have spent a great deal of time putting together very detailed photo pages. Once that is done, (another 6 months or so) I will start writing informational pages on just about everything to do with my neck of the woods.
Nothing beats the real thing. Create interesting content which your readers really want to see and the natural links will come ... not to mention hits! :)
I became very frustrated with the whole link campaign idea a couple of years ago and stopped bothering altogether. Instead, I have spent the time I used to waste trying to get links, trying to figure out ways to generate pages which will invite natural links.
That's been my approach, too, and it's worked pretty well so far. I don't troll for links, but by focusing on content, I've received quality links (some with high PR) from magazines, newspapers, travel guides, libraries, universities, conference sites, and even a few corporate sites such as airlines and a luggage manufacturer.
This strategy may not work for e-commerce and affiliate sites, but it can work quite well for editorial and reference sites.
Nothing beats hard work and Brett's, Successful Site in 12 Months with Google Alone [webmasterworld.com] ;)