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Local Websites And Links From Outside The Region


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#16 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 03:47 AM

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Do you understand that probably 90% of the links you obtain (maybe even more than 95%) probably won't help your friend's site very much because of your inexperience?


Let's just assume you're right about the 90-95% not helping, at all...that won't be a problem because I do not charge him anything (+ I have to get started somewhere).

QUOTE
I'm not saying don't build links. I just think you need to stop and set a few objectives and milestones down on paper so you can see how well you're doing as you go out and build your links.


I'm often called an overanalyzer and overthinker for doing these kind of things :-). I do have certain goals in mind, but as I do tend to overanalyze/overthink stuff (Im not one of the folks who act before they think, but who thinks (too much) before he acts!), I dont think its a bad idea to just get started to get the feel for this, and how it affects his results. - Keep in mind how careful I am (asking all those SE guidelines questions, trying to make sure his site would still pass a handcheck,etc.).

I know his rankings, and the first goal I have in mind is coming up with one successful link building campaign (after having improved his on-page optimization to rank for some uncompetitive+highly targeted phrases he hadnt considered already). And then I'll see the effects it'll have had on his site's rankings for different search terms.

If, they havent improved at all or not enough, it'll be time to re-consider what I do. Track, adjust... I dont plan on spending 12 months on link building and then wondering if it has worked and coming on here crying about how nothing works ;-).

I hardly doubt that a successful link building campaign the way Im trying to do it wont help his rankings if I get it to fly, considering the links he has built have improved his rankings and gotten him top10 rankings for his city/state + business niche (mostly reciprocal and directory kind of links). ..Of course, I cant exclude the possibility that the l inks he built over time have nothing to do with it and that it all comes down to his site having aged....in theory.........

Ill spend 2 weeks on this and track his rankings, if they dont improve I know it wasnt worth the effort and Ill have to adjust.

PS: As for not giving away much/enough about the website at hand - it might seem a bit childish or something - but he did ask me not to give his niche away, as he's looking to scale it,etc. ...whether thatll work out ofr him or not is another question...but if he trusts me that I wont name it, I'll have to do just that..

#17 Jill

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 07:57 AM

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Ill spend 2 weeks on this and track his rankings, if they dont improve I know it wasnt worth the effort and Ill have to adjust.


You won't learn anything in 2 weeks. You'll want 6 months at least, I would think.

#18 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:25 AM

QUOTE(Jill @ Jul 23 2010, 02:57 PM) View Post
You won't learn anything in 2 weeks. You'll want 6 months at least, I would think.


Okay, I agree 2 weeks is somewhat optimistic... what I meant is that after the first link building campaign gives some results (as in if my linkbait flies (and I dont mean linkbait in a cheesy way, but just linkworthy content targeted at the right linkers)...I'd expect to see some kind of positive changes (even though age of links is considered a ranking factor, too (still wondering about the evidence for this, admittedly)).

He had some customers that have problems with his product, and need a specialized version of it (saw that when having him give me the list of previous customers)..he has already sold to them, but didnt have anything about that on his website. I added a page with (one of the) specialized versions of his product, and the next day it's ranking in the top10 in the SERPs - #5 or so. (will soon add more pages for the other specialized versions)

Should I not expect, that....if the first link building campaign for his site flies (though not targeted at this particular page), that overall site a uthority is boosted (if it is a decent campaign), and that rankings for such long-tail phrases will move up in the SERPs?

For example for that #5 phrase....unless there's a big gap between the #1-#4 results, Id expect a successful link building campaign (2 weeks was too optimistic..yes..) to have that page for the long tail keyword go from #5 to #4 (or 3 or 2 or 1).

If there is a big gap between our #5 ranking and the #1-#4 ranking (for the uncompetitive long-tail keyword), I think I should be able to see some kind of changes like this, b/c overall site authority was boosted, for other long-tail keywords' rankings.

Does a boost in overall link authority pointing to a website (keep in mind this is a somewhat uncompetitive niche - his site ranks high for the generic terms (locally) on nothing but reciprocal and directory-like links)..not cause changes in a site's rankings for (uncompetitive) long-tail keywords?

Am I this wrong about it? I realize I might be, but quite frankly it'd surprise me.

PS: I do keep in mind its about sales not traffic + I do realize that SERPs arent the same f or everyone anymore these days (but if a page, or multiple pages..of long-tail terms rise in my SERPs & in his SERPs,etc. one should be able to tell, I believe)

PPS: I definitely dont think that creating success metrics, etc. for what Im doing right now would be a g ood idea, though, b/c for myself that might just be another reason to postpone and procrastinate, and I simply have to jump in, now! (I'd definitely agree that in general/in the future, this is a good idea)




#19 Jill

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 08:58 AM

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Okay, I agree 2 weeks is somewhat optimistic... what I meant is that after the first link building campaign gives some results (as in if my linkbait flies (and I dont mean linkbait in a cheesy way, but just linkworthy content targeted at the right linkers)...I'd expect to see some kind of positive changes (even though age of links is considered a ranking factor, too (still wondering about the evidence for this, admittedly)).


I think you might know rather quickly whether you're able to generate links, but I would also think that it would take a very long time to know if those links will help your SEO efforts. That's a long term goal.

#20 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 09:39 AM

QUOTE(Jill @ Jul 23 2010, 03:58 PM) View Post
I think you might know rather quickly whether you're able to generate links, but I would also think that it would take a very long time to know if those links will help your SEO efforts. That's a long term goal.


But should you not be able to see an impact on the rankings of, at least, uncompetitive long-tail keywords (that you dont rank #1 for, yet)?...as overall site authority should be boosted if the links 'count'?

Hmm..I'll see, I guess! gotta get started somewhere..

#21 qwerty

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 09:51 AM

Competitive and not competitive aren't binary. It's all grey area. A search with 500 results is less competitive than a search with 501 results.

For a really, really long tail search, all you may need is to get the page indexed.

#22 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 10:25 AM

QUOTE(qwerty @ Jul 23 2010, 04:51 PM) View Post
Competitive and not competitive aren't binary. It's all grey area. A search with 500 results is less competitive than a search with 501 results.

For a really, really long tail search, all you may need is to get the page indexed.


I think I agree with all of that, but I'm a bit confused as to how that relates to what I described. Let me try to put it more briefly/clearly, again (in case I babbled too much in the posts before):

You rank #5 for an uncompetitive keyword.

You get 50 links from decent websites (the link building campaign).

This should boost overall link authority of your website (or not..if all those links were complete garbage and didnt help).

If overall site authority was boosted (if the link building campaign was effective in any way), your ranking for this uncompetitive keyword should go up from #5 to #4 or #3 or #2 or #1.

Of course the #1, #2, #3 and #4 rankings might be much, much harder to get to than the #5 ranking you got (the top 4 ranking sites might be much harder to beat than #6 and below). This is possible, theoretically...and then even if your link building efforts did boost overall site authority, it might not show in your ranking for this particular uncompetitive keyword, at all.......However, if you monitor the rankings of *many* uncompetitive keywords that you rank for, you should see some positive changes for some of them...if your link building campaign has any kind of positive effect.

Quite frankly, I don't see any flaw in this logic...If there is one, please tell me about it! I'm not here to boost my ego, but to learn and improve my SEO skills!

PS: the reason I believe the overall site authority thing is that.......sites with a lot of link juice pointing to them often dont seem to have a hard time ranking subpages (even if no links whatseover point to these subpages). The whole "an authoritative website can rank for anything under the sun"-phenomenon....Jill mentioned that it wasn't this extreme, anymore, but that "phenomenon" of a more authoritative site being able to rank its subpages more easily than your average site doesn't seem to have dissappeared completely.






#23 qwerty

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 10:48 AM

Yes, it's logical. It's just not predictable. The less competitive the phrase is, the less help the page is going to need to rank for it, but there are no calculations that can be applied to determine how much help will be needed.

Links to the site will probably help the page, assuming the page isn't orphaned. Direct links to the page, particularly links using the phrase in the anchor text, will help more. But if the competition is really low, you may not need to build links. You might be able to reach your goal with on-page optimization and internal linking.

#24 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:05 AM

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But if the competition is really low, you may not need to build links. You might be able to reach your goal with on-page optimization and internal linking.


Yes, but if I want to use it as an indicator (of the success of my link building campaign)....and dont change anything about on-page optimization & internal linking while running a link building campaign....and only look at long-tail/uncompetitive keywords (for which Im trying to rank with other pages than the page on which my "linkbait" is located) and...only monitor changes in those for which I am not yet ranking #1, yet.......then can I not use them as an indicator to see if my link building campaign are helping my SE rankings.....rather than only being able to tell it after 6 months as Jill suggests?

I can only stress that Im not trying to be an annoying wise-guy, Im just very curious and wanna know this badly LOL

and..just dont see(get?) why I cant see if it works much sooner than only after say 6 months.



#25 qwerty

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:29 AM

If this is an experiment intended to show you how much a link helps, you can go ahead and do that, but if it tells you anything, it's going to be how much those particular links helped that particular page for that particular keyword phrase. It won't give you any solid information you can use to predict what a similar campaign is going to accomplish for a different page or a different keyword phrase.

On top of that, the information you gain just about those links helping that page for that keyword won't be reliable, because while you're doing this, there will be changes to the search engine algorithm that might or might not have an effect on your page's rankings, and there may well be changes to the pages you're competing with.

Jill's point about waiting six months is based on the fact that everything is in a constant state of flux (as I just described). When you make changes on a page, you may see changes in ranking right away, but you shouldn't take that to mean much, because those rankings might disappear as quickly as the appeared. I generally tell people that if they want to see the effect of a single change, then they should make that change and no others, then wait a few months in the hope that the changes they see will be relatively stable at that point. But if you change other stuff, if the pages you're competing with change, or if some change to the algo affects the ranking of the page (and you have no way of knowing if that happened), then it's even more difficult to say "I did this and it had this effect."

When it comes to link building, that can take even longer, because you're also dealing with the time it takes the search engine to find each of the new links pointing to your page and determine how much that link is going to count (if it counts at all).

That's why a more holistic approach to the process will be less likely to lead to you pulling out all your hair. You make changes to improve the site for users. You make sure the site is friendly to search engines. Then you track whether and how much the site is doing a better job of serving the business it represents.

If, after you've made your improvements, a given long tail phrase is bringing in more converting traffic, you've done your job, and you don't need to pin down whether it was changing one word or gaining a particular link that made that change happen. You just know that the process as a whole was worth the effort.

#26 Jill

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:42 AM

And now I'm going to have to throw you another curveball.

You keep talking about rankings and #1 rankings, etc. and that being your measure of successs. If you haven't seen already elsewhere in the forum, you'll need to understand that rankings are a poor measure of success.

What you'll want to be measuring is the increased traffic and conversions from the keywords.

#27 PatrickGer

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 12:33 PM

QUOTE(Jill @ Jul 23 2010, 06:42 PM) View Post
And now I'm going to have to throw you another curveball.

You keep talking about rankings and #1 rankings, etc. and that being your measure of successs. If you haven't seen already elsewhere in the forum, you'll need to understand that rankings are a poor measure of success.

What you'll want to be measuring is the increased traffic and conversions from the keywords.


My post from 3:25:

QUOTE
PS: I do keep in mind its about sales not traffic + I do realize that SERPs arent the same f or everyone anymore these days (but if a page, or multiple pages..of long-tail terms rise in my SERPs & in his SERPs,etc. one should be able to tell, I believe)


I do realize this :-)

@qwerty: sorry cant read + reply right now..will leave the page oepn and do so later hope I dont forget to! (got to rush to the supermarket before it closes ,right now..)

#28 Michael Martinez

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 01:33 PM

I'm going to bow out of this discussion with this final point, and it's something to think about, not just a one-off condescending reply. The following Websites all started out with precisely ZERO links:

Amazon.com
Target.com
Walmart.com
Barnesandnoble.com
ebay.com
1-800-flowers.com
1800mattress.com
ediets.com

What do all these sites have in common with the average little retailer ecommerce site (besides starting out with ZERO links)? It's not a big marketing budget. Amazon and eBay were shoestring startups.

Every one of these sites (and hundreds more like them) provided real value to the consumers who use them from the very beginning. If your friend is selling merchandise offline as well as online, he almost certainly has a value proposition that he can share with you in 1-2 sentences.

That is the secret to online ecommerce success. You share that value proposition over and over again in so many ways, both tangible and intangible, discreet and overt, again and again. People are looking for the value.

Everything else follows. That doesn't mean you don't need to invest hard work; it just means that if you focus on the value that the ecommerce site provides when you create your copy, you'll find that obtaining links is not very important after all.

Every site needs a FEW links. No site needs TONS of links. Only SEOs think they need TONS of links -- and SEOs are not Websites.

Let the Website do the link building for you. Create content about the value that the merchant site is providing to the consumer on every product and category page. Offer additional value through advice, resources, anecdotes, customer testimonials, feature articles about how customers have benefitted from the site's products, etc.

Make selling the products the focus of your work. There is more value in a sale than in 1,000 links.

#29 PatrickGer

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Posted 24 July 2010 - 11:02 AM

thanks @ qwerty & Michael! (sorry a bit in a rush, now, but I did read both of your posts and think I got your points)




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