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Thoughts on outsourcing link building

7:41 pm on Feb 14, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I've got a proposal on elance to build links for one of my websites. I've gotten a number of offers for link buidng services..but am skeptical. Any of you use a service/company to do this?

I just don't have the time to do all of the link building and using a service to get 50-100 links for a reasonable fee sounds like a good way to augment what I'm doing..

Thoughts? I really appreciate any advice you can give me.

[edited by: martinibuster at 7:51 pm (utc) on Feb 14, 2010]
[edit reason] See TOS. [/edit]

3:05 pm on Mar 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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A good link builder will get 20-40 links a month and you will move up in your rankings.

I'd be careful about trying to obtain a certain number of links during any given time period. Links are probably one of the loudest signals one can send. 20-40 links per month is quite a task from my perspective, if they are the type of links I'd be interested in. In fact, that might take about a year for me. ;)

A really good link builder will take a close look at the content he is promoting. He'll make suggestions for improvement. He may even suggest that your internal link architecture change to best direct incoming link equity.

A really good link builder is going to charge you accordingly too. This isn't a matter of automation, that is out of the question, totally. They will do everything manually.

A really good link builder will take a very close look at your industry to see what is lacking from a How To perspective. He may even suggest application development at which time you may build a tool to fill a need for visitors to your site.

Ya, that's what a really good link builder would do. :)
3:36 pm on Mar 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Some “buyers” simply don’t understand that “link building” is an integral part of Internet Marketing and, yes, sometimes even Product Development. It’s extremely time-consuming process (hello martinibuster and wheel) performed during years, rather than months. It can go by a very intelligent and creative route: partnerships, team-ups, freebies, contests, articles, reviews to name a few. Instead, lured by false promises of “instant results” and “affordable prices” and have nothing else to consider, people buy packages of link exchanges, social bookmarkings and directory submission. Nothing wrong in using that kind of services too, if done right. However, too many “service providers” are not playing by rules.

So it’s not outsourcing to blame. Just know what you want and find the right person or company to do it.
7:19 pm on Mar 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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@pageoneresults I was not trying to say a specific number. I was just trying to say it was slow. 20 quality links a month is not hard if you work 40 hours a week at it. You can go several days with no links and some days several of your long term efforts might give you the link at the same time. It is random.

When people are paying you to build links there is a minimum threshold of how many links that are expected. If you go an entire month and only get one link not very many people will continue to pay you. I suppose if you spent that entire month trying to get a very specific link they might be ok with that.
8:45 pm on Mar 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I think there are a lot of good comments on here. @wheel and @pageoneresults stand out the most to me.

Quality link building is extremely difficult. It's a big sales job really. When I do link building, I send out a custom email addressed to the specific site owner and then follow-up with a phone call a couple days later. Sometimes, you have to pitch it as advertising and put a little skin in the game. It usually takes several phone calls and emails to get a link.

Even the .edu and .gov links are like that from my experience. Maybe you follow-up with a thank you card (snail mail) with a gift card to Starbucks (keep it under $20).

To get the high quality links, you better have a high quality site. The .edu and .gov's of the web aren't just going to link to anybody.

Other link building tactics to use are press releases. You can target the message and link anchor text. Most of these fly under the radar as well and look completely organic.

Another good source of links: networking. Ask friends, co-workers, associates, and other clients for links.

Just my $.02.
10:16 am on Mar 3, 2010 (gmt 0)

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While the need for high quality links is not to be disputed, you might consider getting a good spread on links even if these come from some low(er) quality sites.
These links can have a mix of different anchor texts as stated before.

Also some social media links like those from delicious, Twitter and Stumbleupon do help if really done by others (Google is pretty strong in identifying if you just log on to different accounts to bookmark yourself).
10:26 am on Mar 3, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Some things you outsource, others you do not. I look at link building the same way as inviting folks to my house for a barbecue. Obviously I invite only those I'd like to share a meal. I would not feel comfortable in having someone in a different country creating that guest list simply because they could...
12:32 am on Mar 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

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...and was really going to look into outsourcing it to some Indian or Thai SEO firm. I knew there was probably a risk in that, but probably TOO much of a risk.

Apart from the risk, I would have thought you would need to conduct your link building from locations closer to home, from areas where you would hope to get business, same country possibly - unless world dominance is your goal?! I don't believe peoples view of the internet is the same the world over?!
6:33 am on Mar 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for the reply. I will train and monitor very carefully.
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