Category Archives: Expert SEO Blog

Removing Unnatural Links by Removing Pages on Your Website

removing unnatural linksTrying to clean up your backlink profile? Did you know that you can quickly remove links by removing the page of your site to which that link points?

 

Obviously this tactic can’t be used for links pointing to your home page. But, if you have inner pages that have built up large numbers of unnatural links and are causing your site to be affected negatively by a Google penalty or algorithm issue, then this could be a good tactic to use.

 

Be sure you do it correctly though! Later on in this article I’ll share about how a client of mine got their site re-penalized by making an error in 404ing their pages.

 

Removing a Page With Unnatural Links Pointing to it

 

During a Webmaster Central Hangout, Google employee John Mueller was asked:

 

Does removing a page that has unnatural links pointing to it accomplish the same thing when it comes to removing a link when it comes to the Penguin algorithm? If a site has all of its links pointing to one page and removes the page is the issue solved?

 

“Yes, essentially that’s pretty much the same thing,” Mueller said. “So, what happens when a page is removed and the page returns a 404, what happens is that we drop those links so that they don’t count. Generally speaking, if you can’t remove those links and you don’t want to use the disavow backlinks tool then you could remove those pages.”

 

And here’s how Mueller answered a question in the Google Webmaster Forum on the same topic:

 

In general, if you remove the page that is being linked to (such as a spammy forum thread) and make sure that it returns a 404/410 HTTP response code, we’ll ignore the links to those pages.

 

Don’t Make These Mistakes!

 

Please know, though, that the page must be truly removed in order for the links pointing to it to no longer count. The following won’t work to remove links:

 

  • Noindexing and/or nofollowing the page. A noindexed, nofollowed page will still receive PageRank from links pointing to it. Marking a page on your site noindexed and/or nofollowed doesn’t accomplish the same thing as physically removing a link.
  • Blocking by robots.txt: A page that is blocked by robots.txt will still receive PageRank as well. The robots.txt directive will simply tell Google not to crawl that page. But, if links point to it then they will still count towards your site.
  • Redirecting the pages to another page on your site. A redirect will pass somewhere from 95 to 100 percent of the PageRank from bad link on to the redirected page and won’t remove the link.
  • Removing the link but creating an identical page on your site with a different URL. I’ve seen situations where Google can recognize identical content and automatically canonicalize it. What this means is that links pointing to the original page will be attributed to the new page.

A Grievous Error

 

One of my clients made a big mistake. Several months ago we worked hard to remove an unnatural links penalty that this client received.

 

A previous SEO company had built unnatural links to their site by creating a large number of articles on the site and then paying other sites to link to these articles. We removed those unnatural links by removing all of the articles that had been made on the site. If someone clicked on one of those unnatural links, they would be directed to a 404 page.

 

The site also had some other obviously unnatural links, such as low-quality directories which we dealt with as well. We were very pleased when Google removed the unnatural links penalty from the site.

 

However, I was very surprised to find out about two months later that the site was penalized. Again.

 

It didn’t take long to determine what had happened. The site owners had decided to redirect all of those 404 pages to the home page.

 

Whether it was done in error, or done to try to sneakily regain some link juice, I don’t know. Somehow their site underwent another manual review and the penalty was levied again.

 

Did you know that when a site gets penalized a second time by Google that the penalty is often more harsh and also harder to remove? This is because it takes more work to convince the webspam team that you really are committed to the quality guidelines.

 

For this site, we quickly removed the redirects so that the bad links once again pointed to 404 pages and filed again for reconsideration. But, this time Google didn’t remove the penalty.

 

Google gave examples of unnatural links that were very hard to find as they were not in the list of Webmaster Tools backlinks. Now that this site has lost Google’s trust they are going to have to do a lot more work to get the penalty removed.

 

Should You 404 Pages or Just Disavow the Unnatural Links?

 

In the same Hangout linked to above, Mueller said that using the disavow tool to ask Google to not count these bad links would work just as well as 404ing the page(s) on your sites to remove links.

 

However, as there is controversy over the use of the disavow tool, (see Cyrus Shepard’s disavow experiment and my theory on what happened), I would suggest that if all of a page’s links are bad ones, to just remove the page rather than disavow. Removing the page will remove all of the bad links.

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

 

Article Source: http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2296653/Removing-Unnatural-Links-by-Removing-Pages-on-Your-Website

 

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SEO Packages Buyer Beware

All too often, I have new clients share the “strategy” their previous SEO company/consultant had suggested (or worse – implemented) and it’s some sort of a package deal. Often, these packages incorporate severely outdated tactics, many of which might have been at least marginally effective in the past, but are toxic today. But that’s not the worst part of those packages.

 

It’s sad to hear from the owner of a relatively small but successful site that was generating a few thousand dollars per month until recently, then suddenly, they’re considering a couple hundred dollars their norm. Even sadder is having to explain to them that it happened because they made a poor choice – one that was totally avoidable.

 

I’ve had many of the emails shared with me by which they were prospected. My own junk folder even picks up one now and then. Here’s one I recently received, that’s fairly typical:

 

Hello,

We are offering S.E.O. services for your website. which will help you to improve your Google, Yahoo, and Msn and other search engine rankings.

Monthly Task and responsibilities: –

 

  1. 150 Directory submissions
  2. 10 Social Bookmarking Submissions
  3. 10 Article Submissions (1 article x 10 article directories)
  4. 10 Press Release Submissions (1 press release x 10 press release websites)
  5. 10 Blog Submissions
  6. 1 unique, 400 word article written
  7. 1 unique, 400 word press releases
  8. 15 One Way back links with mix PR
  9. Meta tags changes suggestions
  10. Keyword research
  11. Competitor Analysis
  12. Heading tag changes
  13. Alt tag changes
  14. Interlinking wherever required.
  15. Keyword density in site content.
  16. HTML Site Map
  17. XML site map and Submission in webmaster tool

Our Best rates for this are: – USD 150 per month per project at beginning of every month.

Please let us know in case you are interested.

Thanks & Regards,
[Name charitably withheld]
Business Development manager

 

Now, sometime during the last decade, parts of that package would have been effective for most sites. Parts of it are even still effective for most sites. But I think most of us know which of those are outdated, hence, toxic to nearly any site. (I say nearly any site, because there are a few niches which seem to be 100 percent filled with sites practicing such techniques, so it really has no bearing on the SERP placement of any site.)

 

So let me address these “SEO services” in a very general fashion:

 

Honestly, the first eight items are, for the most part, crap! For a website, they have the potential of being absolutely disastrous.

 

Would you assume this person has the ability and the motivation to single out site directories, article directories, blogs, PR sites, and social bookmarking sites that are both safe and effective? For any site? In any niche? (At $150/month, I doubt many would realistically expect a lot of specialized effort on your part.)

 

At $150, should you also expect that the keyword research and competitor analysis will be performed to a granular level? And that the quality of the press release and article will be of decent quality? Ideally, in comprehensible English?

 

This spam email demonstrates that he hasn’t got a clue which old techniques are now high-risk, low-yield. I tend to judge a book by its cover in such situations. Anyone who markets themselves in such a sloppy and outdated fashion, is not on my short-list of marketing hires.

 

Why Cookie-Cutter Packages Don’t Work

 

The real point: a cookie-cutter recipe isn’t going to work for just any site.

 

In fact, an argument could be made that no such package is likely to work ideally for more than one or possibly two sites, and even then, only if they’re identical in terms of niche, market, quality and a handful of other factors. Oh, and a huge amount of blind luck.

 

Any reputable SEO, in my opinion, will first look at a site to get at least a snapshot of what areas need attention or can be better developed, before proposing a strategy. If they’re willing to quote a price, sight-unseen, I would say that one of three possibilities exist:

 

  • They haven’t got a clue what they’re doing (which sadly, is often the case).
  • They’ve priced themselves sufficiently high to allow for virtually any contingency.
  • They’re too stupid to be allowed to play with either a keyboard or sharp instruments.

Ideally, if a client’s site seems to need extensive on-page work, I’ll be able to talk them into a medium-level audit. That allows me to quantify the hours I expect to have to dedicate to each task. But even without that audit, I’ll still do enough checking on my own, to be able to put forward a decent guestimate of what’s required, before I begin a statement of work and pricing.

 

I can’t imagine quoting the same fixed dollar amount for the addition of alt attributes to both an eight-page mommy-blog and to Amazon. But selling SEO packages is essentially doing just that. Different market demographics, niches, product type, marketing style, business model and a host of other criteria demand an individualized strategy for every site.

 

Caveat Emptor

Caveat Emptor

 

Unfortunately, many site owners look for help with their websites without knowing enough about the sort of help they need to enable them to make informed decisions. They either fall for a scam and take a beating, hopefully learning something valuable in the process, or they do their own due diligence in an effort to avoid a beating.

 

When they fall for bad SEO packages, the least that’ll happen is that they’ll waste their money. Often, they’ll also suffer long-lasting losses, as they spend months trying to recover from a penalty – the only tangible result of their SEO investment. Another result, nearly as tangible, is the bad taste left in their mouth by what they consider to be SEO.

 

That, as we all know, reflects poorly on all SEO professionals, not just the asshats. It makes it more difficult for the rest of us to close a deal, gain the trust of our clients and deliver the results we know are possible.

 

As far as I’m concerned, silence is as bad as condoning. I don’t condone idiots taking advantage of clients, so I have no intention of being silent on the topic.

 

I also don’t hold site owners innocent of failing to inform themselves. This is the Internet Age, people! Virtually anything you want to know can be found with a few keystrokes.

 

If you’re not willing to invest the time and thought necessary, you deserve a lot of the blame. You could find some good resources with a quick Google search for “SEO best practices organizations”.

 

Conclusion

 

I doubt that most people would buy a used car without checking it out first. Or a house, a surgeon’s services or a babysitter. Doesn’t your livelihood deserve at least as much consideration?

 

You don’t have to become a car mechanic to inform yourself about known service problems, poor performance, or lousy gas mileage. You just need to make the effort to investigate whether what your being offered is typically considered acceptable.

 

The same is true of selecting a reputable SEO. Do your homework and protect your investment.

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

 

Original Article

 

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Traffic Generator Traffic is Not Real

generated traffic,trafficMore so than ever before, website owners need to be very careful as to how they get new traffic to their websites. Even in this post Panda and Penguin environment, people and various SEO companies are still employing methods that are risky at best. One of those methods is automated traffic generating software.

 

The warnings for sites using these methods is the same today as it was a few years ago. Do not use them! The biggest problem with them is still the fact that in most cases, the traffic you get are not real people. They are just generated by a simple program. So you might think that wow, my site has all of this traffic now but the biggest thing you should be looking at is how much of that traffic is actually converting? The answer in most cases is none to very few. After all, how does a snippet of code used in a traffic generating program become a real money spending customer?  the answer to that should be blatantly obvious.

 

The main point here is if your SEO company is using these types of methods to fool you into believing that they are  actually doing a great job in sending you all of this traffic, the wisest thing to do is to give them the old flick. Shop around and find a company that still does things by the book so that your site benefits from real human visitors and not computer generated fake visitors.

 

Read More Here

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

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There are Times When You Need Expert SEO Consulting

There are Times When You Need Expert SEO ConsultingIf you have a website, it should deliver new customers. You want your website to be your best salesperson. To get that, you need effective search engine optimization (SEO). I realized awhile ago that there are many businesses that have an in-house SEO team that might not be experts in the field of optimizing a website. For those businesses, it may be more cost effective to have a staff member taking care of their business website.

 

I introduced a new service recently and that is SEO consulting. Up until just recently, my team and I have specialized in search engine optimization work on behalf of our clients. That meant that we did all of the work in exchange for a monthly fee. But because more and more businesses are using existing staff members to optimize their websites for search engines, I saw a gap in the market. Because of their limited knowledge in the SEO field, they sometimes need a bit of help. What most of these business owners do not understand is that search engine optimization is a specialized field. Do the wrong thing by Google and your site will be penalized in some shape of form. By offering an SEO consulting service to business owners, that type of scenario is hopefully avoided.

 

The first thing I would do is to understand the clients business and marketing goals and then develop a strategy for a winning SEO campaign. Often times if a staff member is performing the website optimization, they don’t understand how important a proper SEO strategy really is to drive traffic to their website.

 

Because we have been operating since February 2006, we understand things like: business objectives, demographics of target audience, creative considerations, media mix, methods of measurement and success metrics. Above all else however, we have the ability to drive targeted traffic to your website and have developed strategies to convert that traffic into paying customers. Like I said in the beginning, your website should be your number one sales person but it won’t be if the wrong strategies are used.

 

Leaving such an important task to someone who is not familiar with the latest SEO trends and developments could possibly turn in to a very costly mistake. If you are a business owner and have an employee performing search engine optimization on your business site, don’t take that chance. An SEO consultation from The Expert SEO Company could just make your website into the sales champion that it was designed to be. So the question really now is, if you are serious about growing your business through new customer acquisition on-line, can you afford NOT to hire an SEO consultant?

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

 

 

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Why I Bang On About On Page Optimization

If you have followed my blog post or articles I have written over the past few years, you would know that one of my favourite seo subjects to talk about is on page optimization. It is in my opinion, one of the most overlooked aspects of seo today. However, even if you did everything by the book with optimizing your pages, it isn’t enough to get you to the top of the rankings. It is just one small part of the whole seo process of a website albeit an important one. Why is there such a misunderstanding with what effective on page optimization is and can it be proven that is actually has any benefit to your websites ranking performance?

 

One of the main reasons it is misunderstood is because people just do not understand what meta tags are and why they need to be filled in properly. The best source to go for an answer on the subject of meta tags is simple Google itself. If you go to Google’s webmaster tools, you will find a section on what meta tags are and their use:

 

Meta tags are a great way for web masters to provide search engines with information about their sites. Meta tags can be used to provide information to all sorts of clients, and each system processes only the meta tags they understand and ignores the rest. Meta tags are added to the <head> section of your HTML page and generally look like this:”

 

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
  <head>
    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <meta name="Description" CONTENT="Author: A.N. Author, Illustrator: P. Picture, Category: Books, Price:  £9.24, Length: 784 pages">
    <meta name="google-site-verification" content="+nxGUDJ4QpAZ5l9Bsjdi102tLVC21AIh5d1Nl23908vVuFHs34="/>
    <title>Example Books - high-quality used books for children</title>
    <meta name="robots" content="noindex,nofollow">

 

I don’t understand why a lot of seo companies totally ignore this simple fact. As Google says, meta tags have basically 2 functions: one is to provide the search engines with information about your site and two, it provides your websites visitors with the same. If they are not filled in correctly or worse still, not at all, then it’s a wasted opportunity. I am not saying for one minute that if you have all the tags optimized that you will be on the 1st page of Google. Probably far from it. But, should your website come up in search and there is no proper description tag to explain what you are about, people will go elsewhere.  Have a look at these two examples:

 

Proper description tag

 

 

In the example above (with my mug shot on it) shows you how the correct number of characters has been used (no more than 150 characaters) so that none of it is trailed off by Google. It’s a clear message of what we do in our agency. It could obviously be more descriptive but it seems to do the job well for us. Now, have a look at one of our competitors description tag:

 

Poor description tag

 

I have off course deleted their web address. In their description tag they just claim to be the best SEO service in Australia. It doesn’t explain what they do and how possibly they are what you are searching for. If you also notice the title tags in both images, ours explains what the page is about as well as what the site is about. The other is just a keyword they are trying to rank for.

 

In onpage optimization, there are off course a few more things that should be done. You should have a proper sitemap.xml file as well as a robots.txt file. The purpose of a robots.txt file is to tell crawlers or spiders which directories can or cannot be crawled. According to Google, a site map is “… a way to tell Google about pages on your site we might not otherwise discover. In its simplest terms, a XML Sitemap—usually called Sitemap, with a capital S—is a list of the pages on your website”. In themselves, these two files are minor aspects of on page seo but put all of the things that we talked about together, they are an important part of the process.

 

Can you actually prove that by doing on page optimization that it makes any difference at all to your rankings and being found by Google? Off course it is. We have a case study on our website explaining just this point. Click HERE if you want to read the whole article. Basically for one client all we did what just on page optimization for their site.

We started our SEO campaign in early February. By the end of May traffic had increased by 19%. their unique visitors in January was only 243 but by the end of February, in one month we increased the unique visitor rate by 850%! All we did for this client is on page optimization on their website and nothing else so that is a huge difference in traffic.

 

Monthly Visitors1

 

 

Additionally, in one month, we increased the number of impressions (the amount of times their website actually appeared in Google search results) by 16.5% and the CTR (click through rate) by 30%.

 

April  2013

onpage optimization

 

May 2013

 

onpage optimization

 

 

All in all, quite a positive return on their investment. The whole point of this exercise is to show you just how powerful proper on page optimization can be if done correctly. I have seen far too many times other seo companies totally ignoring this for their clients or just doing a half arsed job. From the examples above, it does work and it does contribute to the overall visibility of your website. This website shown above is by no means on the first page with all of their keywords but the important thing is, their website is being found by Google, their traffic has increased and their phone is ringing due to the fact of being found on line.

 

If your seo company is not achieving these types of results, then maybe it’s about time for a change. I would be more than happy to have a chat with you personally. In the meantime, if you want to make your website work harder for you and get you some top ROI, CLICK HERE.

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

 

Google Source

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Why Links Remain Critical to SEO Success

With all the “link building is dead!” and “link building isn’t dying or dead!” posts out there, coupled with the fear that many people seem to have where link building is concerned, it’s natural to wonder about who’s right. We all have our skewed perspectives too, and it would be ridiculous to try and pretend that, as a person who specializes in link building, I’d ever say that links are an endangered species.

 

Links aren’t going away any time soon though, and I firmly believe that. I could say the same thing about the importance of many other things, too.

 

I think social is here to stay and its importance will only grow. I think that it’s impossible to imagine the day when technical SEO professionals won’t be needed to help make sure that site architecture is optimal and to instruct us on how to handle all the new code issues that arise as everyone gets online. I think that great writers will find that their skills are even more in demand than ever.

 

In fact, in trying to think about what might no longer remain critical to SEO success, I can’t think of anything (other than forum spammers).

 

I think that the way we build links will change in the future just as it has in the past, and this game will get harder, that’s for sure.

Since you don’t need access to a site in order to build links to it, links can unfortunately be used in a harmful manner by people who don’t know what they’re doing – and they have become such a commodity that grabbing up tons of them for very little money is a piece of cake.

 

I think that the industry is overrun with misinformation about links and that many sites who can’t afford to engage in risky techniques still do so simply because they don’t have to get involved or lift a finger.

 

However, link building isn’t dead or dying. It’s changing, yes, and it’s getting much harder, but it’s still alive and kicking and here’s why.

 

Why Links (Still) Matter

 

The web was built on links. Links drive traffic and they boost rankings. They are how we tell a story. They are how we point people to things we want them to see and how we navigate through the endlessness of the Internet.

 

No matter what anyone says, without high-quality links, you can’t perform at an optimal level organically (at least not for long) and you can’t weather algorithmic updates that crush sites with weaker profiles.

 

So what is a high-quality link? When we say that links matter, we don’t always distinguish between subpar, average, and high quality links and that’s an important distinction.

 

I can give you more examples of bad links than I can of amazing links, sadly, because bad links are easy to get. High-quality links aren’t.

High-quality links usually come from authority sites but they can also come from sites whose metrics don’t yet show their true value. New sites, for example, don’t usually have a Toolbar PageRank, may not rank well, and aren’t being socialized nonstop. Yet.

 

However, getting a link on a relevant page on a new site could turn into a great opportunity next year when that site has a PR 5, is being referenced in tweets by sci-fi author Neil Gaiman (who has close to 2 million followers on Twitter), and has so much value to its audience that you can’t imagine a time when it didn’t exist.

 

Secondly, look at these three facts:

 

  • Google’s PageRank is based on links. If the importance of links is going to lessen, they’re going to have to rewrite the algorithm. If they wanted to do that they’d have done it already.
  • Spiders use links to crawl the web just like humans use them to navigate.
  • Links are a natural way we tell someone about something. When you’re writing and want to mention an example, isn’t it more natural to give the example site a link than to allude to the URL and say “hey you, go see if you can figure out what this URL that I reference actually is and look it up yourself!”?

Now as you’ll notice, I didn’t say anything about link quality there either. Spiders can obviously crawl a bad link just like they can a good link. People with awful or totally irrelevant sites can naturally link to you.

 

The importance of quality comes into play with Google’s PageRank and you know what? It always has. Many people have just erroneously assumed that it was strictly a quantity game where the site with the most links rose to the top, but that is greatly oversimplifying the way it all works.

 

A high-quality link is so high in quality partially because of the quality of the sites linking to it. When that high-quality link is pointed at your site, you receive more value than you do if you were linked to from a page that had lower authority from lower-quality links pointing to it.

 

(I know that there are cases where a site did rank well strictly due to a vast number of links being built to it. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it’s impossible to do that today, but it isn’t nearly as common as it used to be.)

 

Straight From Google’s Mouth

 

In the updated webmaster answers on rankings, Google now says this:

 

In general, webmasters can improve the rank of their sites by creating high-quality sites that users will want to use and share.

 

That “share” part can happen in many ways but the language isn’t exclusive to links anymore. Notice the bit about “high-quality” too, as it used to pertain to links. Sharing is still done via links even though it’s also done on social sites and offline methods, but the idea isn’t really different; the language is what’s changed.

 

Let’s look at another Google quote:

 

Google has invented many innovations in search to improve the answers you find. The first and most well-known is PageRank, named for Larry Page (Google’s co-founder and CEO). PageRank works by counting the number and quality of links to a page to determine a rough estimate of how important the website is. The underlying assumption is that more important websites are likely to receive more links from other websites.

 

There’s that mention of “quality” again alongside the “important” language. This is on a page about how Google search works, on the Google.com domain, so it’s unlikely that it is untrue. If links from high-quality sites stop mattering, PageRank will stop mattering, and is that likely?

 

Also on this same page is the quote “PageRank looks at links to try and determine the authoritativeness of a site.” Maybe PageRank itself will become less important and we’ll see new metrics added or increasing in importance, but saying quality links won’t be a factor is as silly as saying that having important keywords in the content of a page won’t be a factor.

 

Other things may be more important (like the negative signals sent out from having a poor link profile) and the combination of many factors can matter more than one single one, but will we see a day when links aren’t a factor for SEO? Nope.

 

Too Much Fuss?

 

Think about paid links. Even after the nofollow attribute was added and Google cracked down on both the buyers and sellers of links via Webmaster Tools warnings and penalties, people still want to buy and sell links.

 

Would Google keep trying to crack down on how we manipulate links if there was an easier way and if links weren’t really that important? Would they invest that kind of energy and time if anything else could be done? Would they have created the disavow tool if they could properly determine that a link shouldn’t be counted?

 

Links Post-Penguin

 

Penguin fighter

 

Here’s something I bet they didn’t expect to happen after Penguin 2.0 though:

 

Some sites that had previously linked out for free now asked for payment to keep the links up or followed because they theorized that if people were getting penalized or warned for bad free links, they may as well make some money off what they were doing because who knows what Google would think about those links down the road?

 

If Google decides that a site is guilty of linking out in an unnatural manner, why not go ahead and make a few bucks before it gets hit? I’m not saying these were great sites to begin with of course, because in the cases I’ve looked at, they were not, but if authority sites start to fear linking out, what’s to stop them from wanting to make money off the few links that they do give out?

 

If you had a great (and previously free) link on an authority site and they contacted you to say that you could keep that link up if you gave them $500, what would you do? If you had loads of great authority links you might say no, but what if you didn’t?

 

If you think that webmasters on any site put up a link and that’s the end of it, you’re living in a dream world. Links get changed, removed, nofollowed, and become broken.

 

People who did something for free decide they want money. People who accepted money now want more money.

 

Unscrupulous people contact a webmaster and ask for links to be taken down for competitors’ sites and these webmasters don’t have the time or desire to verify that these are legitimate requests, so you know that great link you have? You might have just lost it or it might now point to your competitor.

 

That’s the problem. There are loads of awful and dangerous free links out there, and there are loads of authority links that have been purchased. There are loads of people who can manipulate this system to their advantage and cause you harm in the process. It is a mess, but it’s one that is impossible to clean up.

 

The link buying economy is one that expands and contracts according to Google’s latest proclamations and algorithm changes, people’s concern with risk vs. their need to try to rank quickly, concrete examples of people violating every guideline they have and still doing well, and the idea of making money from a few minutes of work.

 

I’ve been truly amazed by some of the sites that have sold links. I’ve been amazed by people with brand new sites who cannot afford the risk of buying links but still go and pay for networked links.

 

I’ve seen more problematic free links in penalized profiles over the past year than I did in the previous five years. I’ve run reports on sites and seen paid links showing the highest and most beneficial numbers while the most toxic ones are free ones on decent sites. How can any search engine deal with this?

 

Summary

 

We do place a high value of importance on recommendations whether it’s your father telling you the best place to buy a used car or Columbia University linking to a local medical center that they recommend pre-med students check out for an internship. That’s the way the world works, not just the Internet.

 

As we become inundated with more voices telling us what we should do and where we should do it, the authority voices will stand out even more. Having a recommendation from those authorities will only get more important.

 

So links aren’t dying. We just need to focus on building better ones.

 

Thank you for visiting.
Andrew Radics

 

Original Article Source HERE

 

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Update on our Ramadebolow Test

It seems that from our little experiment, when you use social bookmarking for your posts, Google indexes them much faster.  The post on the fictitious  Ramadebolow fruit was indexed by Google in about 2 hours (see below). We had to do a time conversion. When we posted that article, it was June 27th and the time was 12.57 pm. That worked out to being 2.27am GMT and this post was indexed at 4.27 GMT. So all in all it took about 2 hours or so.

 

Update on our Ramadebolow Test

Click on the Image to Enlarge

Interesting side note was that we used our Blogger account as one of the social bookmarks and that was indexed pretty much within the hour. It goes to show how powerful that platform is if you want to get your content out there quickly.

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Using Social Media to Promote Your Local Business

social media presenceToo often local businesses set up social media accounts and then leave them empty. I’d almost rather a business owner not even have a Facebook page than create one and walk away from it. Social media marketing is a fantastic way to promote your local business, connect with current and potential customers, and drive foot traffic through your doors but you only get out what you put in! Social media is not a set it and forget it platform, so be sure you are actively inviting and encouraging your customers to get involved. Ask questions, post pictures, promote specials–give them a reason to connect with you! The more times you can interact with someone online the better chance you have of ultimately drawing them into your store.

 

Here are 3 ways local businesses can use social media marketing to drive physical foot traffic and grow their online presence:

 

1. Connect with local bloggers and online personalities in your industry.

 

Most cities have their fair share of local bloggers and online personalities and these are the kind of online authorities you can connect with via social media to help promote your local business. For instance, a vegetarian restaurant could reach out to vegetarian food bloggers in their area, local food growers and suppliers, the organizers of farmer’s markets and so forth. While these online personalities might not have a huge national presence chances are they have a strong foothold in the local community, which is exactly where your foot traffic is coming from! Invite them to check out your local business, ask them to review your products, form business partnerships and cross-promotions and so forth. They can promote your business using their own social media accounts to a wider audience and help draw new customers in.

 

2. Stay involved with other community events.

 

It’s dangerous to be overly self-promotional. Yes, you have every right to promote your events and sales on social media but you have to remember that social networking sites are not just another soapbox for you to stand out and talk about how awesome you are. You are a local business so get involved in the community and stay involved with related local events! For example, a book store could sponsor and help promote the library’s summer reading program. Or a pet store could volunteer at the local shelter’s adoption day and promote a “pet of the week” on their social profiles to help animals find new families. When you help promote other local businesses you also get the chance to introduce your brand to their customers/social followers, which could drive more foot traffic your way in the end.

 

3. Reward your social media followers with a special offer.

 

In addition to special discounts and sales for your best customers, local SEO expert Chris Silver Smithhad an excellent idea for your social media followers. He suggested that local businesses “have a night where your store is empty and social media can be a great option for filling the place up with more customers and more sales!” For instance, a local clothing store could host a fashion night in for their best customers and give them the first chance to buy new pieces. A restaurant could hold a wine tasting or create a special pre-fixe meal that is just for their social media followers. Turn a slow night into a huge success for your local business and foster some good will with your best customers! At the event be sure to encourage your social followers to take and post pictures, check-in on Facebook, use an event hashtag on Twitter and so forth.

 

In my opinion, just about every local business can leverage social media in some way to not only augment their SEO and online presence, but also help drive foot traffic. The key is to keep finding new ways to give your social followers a reason to interact with your brand. Sales and promotions are great, but what else can you do to attract attention, both online and in-store?

 

For Original Article Click Here

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Is There Such a Thing as Ramadebolow

Here is another random word we just came up with, but this time, we will put in more random text and spread the word RAMADEBOLOW in the article just a bit. Then we will social bookmark it to about 28 different sites and see how long it take Google to index this article.

 

The article is below:

 

“When life gives you lemons, make Ramadebolow and dozens of various other foods and home Is this a Ramadebolow?remedies from this flexible fruit. Lemon’s health perks are due to the high concentration of antioxidants,vitamins B and C, protein, phosphorus, flavonoids, potassium, carbs and unstable oils. Whether you’re using this superfood to prevent kidney stones or making Ramadebolow-flavored cake icing, you’ll profit in flavor and health.

 

Ramadebolow  juice was made use of in ancient Egypt to undo the results of gastrointestinal disorder; and in India, Ayurvedic practitioners suggested lemon peel to treat liver conditions. The Sicilians used lemon peel to make pickling brine and numerous cultures used it to prevent diseases such as scurvy. they used both the peel and juice of lemons are still widely utilized today to clean and tonify the liver”.

 

The article really makes no sense and it’s not meant to so please don’t take any of it’s advice seriously.  It is now 12.57 pm on the 27th of June 2013. Let’s see how long it takes this time.

 

Ramadebolow Searches

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Update On What Is the Great Melonborama

We did a small experiment with how long it takes Google to index a new word or term that has no results what so ever. We came up with the word MELONBORAMA which doesn’t mean anything as far as we are aware of in the English language. It took Google 3 days to index this term and show our article in the results. Have a look at the before and after images below.

 

 

 

This search was done at  10.46 am on Monday the 24th of June 2013.

 

Melonborama searches

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This search as done at 12.37 PM on the 27th of June 2013. It took over 3 days!

 

Melonborama Update

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We will try it again with another made up word but this time we will use social bookmarking sites to spread the word a little and see if Google really uses social bookmarking sites as a reliable source for new content.

 

Check out the new article experiment on a Ramadebolow and CLICK HERE