Your Build My Rank Alternative – What’s Working Today?0
The helpdesk tickets and emails have been non stop since the middle of February. Everyone has had the same panicked comments and questions and concerns. My website used to rank for (fill in the keyword here) and now it dropped 3,4,5,6 pages back in the SERPS.
Many of your questions and topics have been covered in our “Pandalized” – Panda 3.3 specific training, or Troy’s weekly webinar training series and even in our SEO Post Panda SEO Course, which has been updated for 2012.
SIDEBAR: In fact, recently Troy just went through our Feeding the Panda eBook and revised it for the recent Panda 3.3 changes. I looked at it afterwards and said, “really? that’s all you changed?”. The fact is, that 99% of the eBook went unchanged because what we talked about more than a year ago is still *exactly* what you need to be doing today. If you don’t own a copy of Feeding the Panda, now’s the time to pick it up.
The fact is nobody is going to help you per se, only advise. Only you can get yourself out. It is the same mentality that got people in this predicament that will keep some from recouping. Looking for quick rankings, has now gotten you looking for quick fixes and quick rankings again. It’s the SEO “circle of life”.
Now, let me quantify that…
I am not saying you are bad. I am not saying you were wrong. I am saying when you are doing any sort of linkbuilding for one specific search engine that begins with a G – you are an algo change away from a major anxiety attack. And, I am saying if you are looking for a quick fix, you probably won’t find it, and if you do, it probably won’t last long.
The facts are the facts. G has always frowned upon linkbuilding, and any sort of SERP manipulation is against their ToS. But marketing and promoting your site is not. There is a very fine line there between marketing your website and manipulating the engines. In fact the line is so thin, that in reality, they can interpret just about any sort of marketing you do as against their ToS whenever they see fit.
The house always wins. Always. The Big is House. There will always be winners and losers in this game.
What we have to do is start marketing again. A couple months ago I was driving to the store and I noticed someone put a sign at the corner advertising they will install TV’s on your wall for $99. In fact as I drove around I noticed the sign at every corner – I called the number, and had him mount 5 TV’s at our vacation home in Orlando. (SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT: If anyone is looking to rent a 4 bedroom townhouse in a wonderful resort in the Disney World area in Orlando for a vacation week let us know – we may rent it out for some weeks). My point is you have to advertise, you have to market your product some way and somehow. You can’t stop marketing. If you stop you won’t be found. If you stop you won’t get traffic, and you won’t make sales. And the only way to get traffic is by marketing.
The fact is, this shouldn’t be “news” to anyone. SEO, as we have always said, is just ONE FORM of online marketing. Now we have always believed it to be the “best form” because of the higher converting traffic and the natural “attraction” angle of it, but that still doesn’t change the fact that it should be just ONE of many forms of marketing and advertising that you do for your site. Unfortunately, for many people, they have relied solely on organic traffic – and that is a recipe for disaster.
If you find yourself in that group, please don’t take offense. Instead, look at this as a “wake up call” and resolve to change your business model so that you have many forms of traffic coming to your site – not just one… Don’t believe that paid traffic has to be expensive – you can start small, but you have to start. (Check out CPA quantum for just $37 to get a head start) Use Alexa rankings to target other sites in your niche that have good traffic or popularity and seek to buy advertising on them directly. Every one will NOT be a winner. In fact, most will be loosers. But if you evaluate a couple every month and continue to “search them out” you will discover the ones that work and work well.
Unfortunately, creating a website, sitting around and singing Kumbaya will not get you traffic.
This is where the “The Panda Power of Two” comes in to play (Yeah I just made that up)
There are two ways of getting traffic.
- Organic Traffic – This simply means traffic coming from the search engines organically to your site from your rankings, this also includes organic social traffic, etc…
- Paid Traffic – There are literally tons of different types of paid traffic from PPC/Adwords, to CPV, to PPV, to banners and media buys, to Facebook ads, direct advertising, etc, etc…
Paid traffic can be very expensive and out of some peoples budgets, and organic traffic converts much better. But in reality you should be doing both. In fact, in today’s environment and shaky ground with Google, I’d argue you cannot afford to NOT be doing some form of paid traffic – you simply need to be mitigating your risk. How expensive is it if NOT doing it ensures failure?
The cause of most peoples problems this year with their organic rankings have been two fold.
- You have had a huge link loss due to de-indexing of the networks you used, a link vacuum if you will, and…
- You have over optimized your keywords.
There are only two things to do for the Organic:
- Replace the links you lost
- Diversify your link profile
Well actually there are three, you can also quit.
And now we break my Power of Two analogy, (hmm Panda Power of Two Plus One maybe? )
- Build more links
Everyone is in a panic, everyone has stopped doing what they were doing. Nothing changes if nothing changes. Doing nothing gets you nothing. We have heard from people that have stopped everything, cancelled everything, people are just plain old frozen in place. BIG MISTAKE.
Waiting…… Waiting…… Waiting….. do you hear the crickets yet? Have you regained your SERP’s? Didn’t think so.
Do you think that just doing “nothing” is going to solve the problem? Worse yet, consider it from G’s perspective. You’ve been building links like crazy and the all knowing big G has seen this, they’ve seen the activity. Now they send out a “threatening and vague” message and “boom” – you stop what you’re doing COLD TURKEY. Nothing. Do you think that looks suspicious? You might as well yell out “penalize me, penalize me”!
You need to start marketing, and you need to keep your eye on the prize. You need to think long term. You need to think CHAOS.
When analyzing an authority websites backlinks, you will notice their backlink anchor text is chaotic in nature. There isn’t much of a rhyme nor reason for it. They have random one time usage anchor text. Not 500 anchors to the same word. They have links from many sources. And they have lots of natural ‘nofollow’ links, and tons of branded links.
NOTE: To make a link “nofollow” simply add the attribute
rel="nofollow" to the anchor tag. As in:
<a href="http://domain.com" rel="nofollow">test link</a>.
The blog networks worked really well, but unfortunately they are being hunted down. But the fact that they are being hunted down, tells you just how well they work. So that speaks volumes. High PR links still work very well for building authority and ranking. What else speaks volumes, has anyone noticed the sites that took over the top spots once other have fallen? Has anyone analyzed their backlinks? They are doing the exact same things – the same old strategies. Sites that are ranking for highly competitive keywords are still ranking based on paid links with rich anchor text. I have seen it dozens of times. We have analyzed dozens of affiliate sites that are sitting at the top spot for specific keywords and they all have the exact same types of links. The difference was their method of acquisition. They were not using BMR, and the HPRL from forums – they are using networks and sites that have not been discovered yet. Don’t believe it? Go check out your top competitors and sites that are now beating you in the SERP’s. Seriously, Download a copy of Spyglass and start analyzing backlinks – download Spyglass here – you can try it out for free.
Which leads me to…………….
What is working today for 2012?
In a nutshell, everything is working, to some extent and at a different capacity.
We have yet to update our Best List for 2012 because lots of things have been in flux, and we may abandon it as whole, because publishing everything that works is part of the problem as well. Here is a quick run down on tools we or team members of ours are currently using today for our linkbuilding efforts.
The key to Linkbuilding in 2012 is – you have to be better, you have to be more diverse, you have to be smarter and you have to think ahead.
- #1. Content – great content has to be your #1 goal. The more content you have the more longtail traffic you can get from your content. We have Authority Bundles as well as Product Review writing services available at ArticlesOnTap.com – these are a great addition to a website looking to expand their footprints. Nothing beats writing the content yourself if you are a subject matter expert. But you can always buy content and then tweak it to add your inherent expertise so it is not as time consuming for you.
- #2. Social signals matter – We have always been huge fans of Synnd, and believe Synnd is now more important than ever. If you are signing up for Synnd, the Enterprise hands off version is a must – not the LITE. You can check out our Synnd review here – or go right to Synnd by clicking here.
- #3. Diversity – you must have a very wide dispersion of links in your linking profile, and if you can’t do it yourself you can have someone else do it. The ArticlesOnTap.com diversified SEO packages are a great way to go if you have the budget. Check them out here.
- #4. Diversity Part 2 – for the Do It Yourselfers, Backlink Banzai offers a footprint free, blog network free way for link naturalization. They actually offer a naturalization process when you sign up for 66% non keyword rich anchor text – for just $67 – its a no brainer if you are looking to do things yourself. Check out Backlink Banzai here as well as their sister site WikiWhirlwind – at this point they are BOTH very recommended and we have seen SERP improvements on URL’s we have test with Banzai as well as we have heard countless stories from dozens of others that are using Banzai successfully. Just remember, it is not the answer to all your issues, it’s just one tool in the arsenal.
- #5. Diversity Part 3 – Article Distributions – Unique Article Wizard still works great for diversity due to the fact that they are sending your articles to a multitude of user owned sites – not private blog networks. You should consider sending extremely highly spun content through for the most bang for your buck, we recommend using Uber Toolz to generate highly spun content along with TBS. We actually prefer Traffic Kaboom – and UAW is a close 2nd to Kaboom. ArticlesOnTap.com actually offers an article submission service to UAW, Kaboom, MAN, Article Ranks and Spin Distribute here for the hands off approach. Article Demon still works and has been revamped with a 2.0 version. We also highly recommend using TBS and UberToolz to create highly spun and effective content for distributions.
- #6. Diversity Part 4- SEO Press releases work great for authority domain level backlinks and citations. We wrote a blog post on the effectiveness of SEO Press Releases here and we sell them here.
- #7. Diversity Part 5 – Yes Linkvana still works, but we now use it for diversity – we send 30 or more links a month, each link with a completely unique anchor text for anchor text diversification. Used in conjunction with other services it works well. Linkvana also works well for 2nd tier link building to Web 2.0 properties to build their authority, we send a lot of Linkvana links to Tiered properties – consider trying that yourself. The same holds true for The Private Network.
- #8. Video Submissions – they work marvelous for great authority backlinks from authoritative video sites. We review Article Video Robot a while ago and it still works wonders at converting your articles into Videos for distributions. Read our review here and check out AVR here. Another great tool for creating high quality videos very quickly is Animoto. Animoto allows you to upload some photos, add some quick text slides and choose some royalty free stock music and then “boom” – it automatically generates the video for you. Make sure to get the pro version though as it is the only way you can remove the Animoto branding/credits at the end.
- #9. Our ALOT services – They are not super diversified as other services we offer, but used in conjunction with other diversification techniques or stand alone for newer smaller sites – they work really well. Read our review here. We no longer recommend ALOT for brand new sites, but for established sites as part of adding to their profile.
Think BRANDED and domain level links, think link building for authority not specific keywords.
The above list is not the end all be all to linkbuilding. You want to have a site that offers a great user experience, you want to have compelling content, you want to have a site with lots of user activity and interaction. You want to add social elements to your site, Facebook, Twitter, G+, Pinterest, links from tutorial sites and document sharing sites, etc… It is all just a piece of the puzzle, but you want a great site as well.
Additionally there are a few other tools that we can’t live without for 2012.
- SEO Spyglass – for analyzing your competitors and your own backlinks.
- Market Samurai and MicroNicheFinder in conjunction with each other
- Article Builder
- Backlink Booster
Okay, that’s it for now – go out there and “get back to work”… It’s time to quit living in fear and get back to marketing!
FYI – Make sure and leave a comment below and tell us what you think!