BlogLectures

In-Depth Blogging And Marketing Advice That Work

Month: August 2011

The Simple Link Building Strategy That Works Ninja

As you probably know, I haven’t been posting on that classic Blog Lectures “once every 3 days” schedule, I realized quality is really important over quantity.

Recently, I have been doing a side project, a bit of link building through article marketing for a mini niche site I have been working on.

Now, I’ll be sharing with you of the link building strategies I use to rank for a high search engine position. It works for websites, blogs, minisites, anything really. The main linking comes from article marketing, below I will first give a simple description of what links are and etc.

What are backlinks?

Backlinks are basically “votes”, the more votes you have, the higher position you have in search engines.

Building backlinks is a part of search engine optimization, a “vote” is basically a hyperlink from other pages that links back to your blog or a page on your blog. Hence the name, links back, back-links…blah.

Some people might ask, couldn’t I just repeatedly link to my blog or a page on my blog myself?Yes, they are still backlinks but have less search engine benefits, you will need to focus on building links that are from pages outside of your blog.

Important: Anchor Text

You may hear this SEO term many times in the web industry, an anchor text is the text that you link to other pages with. For example I have this post about content ideas, I could link it in various ways:

http://www.bloglectures.com/content-idea-sources/

I could simply link to the page with the URL like I did above, but people in search engines don’t search URLs, they search keywords so to give the page some SEO benefits, I should link it using keywords.

Content Idea Sources

See the difference? If thousands of people link to this post with the anchor text “Content Idea Sources”, I am getting a lot of “votes” and Google would put me up higher in the search results for this term.

When you build links to your blog or other pages, it is critical that you hyperlink the link with the keywords you’re trying to rank for 1st on search engines as the text.

Need another example? Go to Google and search “Click Here” and you will be surprised at the fact that the first result is completely irrelevant with this keyword, but because millions of other sites link to it with the anchor text “Click Here”, therefore it gets the 1st place.

Why are anchored-backlinks important?

If you have a good amount of backlinks for a keyword, you can “capture” the 1st result of the first page on Google for that keyword (as well as other search engines such as Yahoo and Bing).

Obviously, if your blog or a page from your blog is ranked 1st for a commonly searched keyword, you will receive a lot of free organic traffic from search engines every day without further work, unless you have competition who are trying to rank for the same keyword.

No-Follow and Do-Follow

To reap search engine benefits, hyperlinks that link back to your site must be do-follow, meaning they should NOT have a rel= “nofollow” tag, or else it would be useless and the backlink will not get picked up by Google (and others but not all). Example of a no-follow link:

<a href="http://www.example.com/" rel="nofollow">Link text</a>

Make sure you double-check whether your backlink is do-follow or not before you build them or your efforts will go wasted. You can easily do that by right clicking anywhere of a page, view the source code and search for your link, if you don’t see any no-follow tags next to your link, you’re all good.

What are keywords?

Keywords are what people commonly search on search engines, say “How to train my dog”, “How to lose weight fast”…etc

You might want to aim for a keyword that people often search or else there would be no point in getting the first result for that search term.

For example, if you wanted to rank for the 1st result for the keyword “common blogging mistakes”, then you will have to do hyperlink your links with the appropriate anchor text, like this:

Common Blogging Mistakes

Oh and it should be do-follow!

Important Ranking Factors

  • Anchor Text – We talked about this earlier, your backlinks should be named the keywords you’re ranking for, not the domain URL or something else that people don’t search.
  • Single-Phrase Backlinking – A little contrary to the anchor text factor but you should never build backlinks around a single keyword, try and give it a little twist every now and then (keep it relevant at the same time), for example: instead of using the “weight loss tips” anchor text all the time, try “weight loss advice”.
  • Page Rank – The higher page rank a page has, the higher link juice (a term for SEO benefits) it will give you if it links to you, to check, simply use this tool. Bear in mind that all pages have an individual page rank even if it’s from the same domain. A backlink from a page rank 7 site can give you as much link juice you can get from 500,000 unique backlinks (real data) from page rank 1 sites.
  • Relevancy – If the backlinks you are getting is from a website that is totally irrelevant from yours, I suggest you should not consider those links, in fact, they can even lower your credibility. If you have a weight loss blog, get links from blogs about weight loss and not from blogs about casinoes.
  • Link Weight – The strength of a link on a particular page is calculated by many factors, the stronger the better, and if a page has many links to other places, the strength of each link will be shared amongst the others, meaning each backlink will become weaker. If you plan on getting quality backlinks, make sure the link weight isn’t spread around with many others.

So the catch is where can you build backlinks?

There are numerous of ways, with one being most popular called article marketing, that is by writing an article around 400 words and submit to an article directory in return for a backlink to benefit yourself with.

This is where I submit content to, three places I’ll ever use:

  1. EzineArticles – Article Marketing
  2. Hubpages – Web 2.0
  3. Relevant Blogs – Guest Posting

EzineArticles is for submitting articles that have a minimum of 400 words, after your content, you get an author resource box to place your two backlinks however you like it. As they say:

“The BODY of your article is where you “GIVE” and the RESOURCE BOX is where you get to “TAKE” for your article gift of information.”

Make sure you write good articles or else the editorial team won’t approve them, all articles are checked by real human beings, so don’t cheat or anything.

Hubpages is a web 2.0, in simple English that means it’s place where you can submit your articles to, it doesn’t have real people checking your stuff, however there is a scoring system called HubScores, it will move up if you write useful stuff and participate in the community, if you spam or write junk it will go down.

Take note that your author HubScore has to be above 75 or else links from all of your articles (called Hubs) will become no-follow. Also, if an individual hub has a score lower than 40 or 50 I don’t remember, the links from that hub alone will become no-follow.

However, it is easy to maintain good HubScores if you give value.

Relevant Blogs, unfortunately I cannot give you much data on this because I don’t know your niche, try Technorati Blog Search for finding relevant blogs. If you guest post on a blog that has a similar topic of yours, you can get quiet good backlinks because there are many blogs out there with a high page rank

Plus, you get instant traffic because almost every single subscriber from that blog will read the post.

Guest posting is basically writing a post for a blog owner to submit it on his/her blog, you get to include a 2-3 sentences “author’s biography” at the bottom of the post with a maximum of 2 backlinks (most of the times).

EzineArticles and Hubpages both have a stable page rank of 6 so the strength of the backlinks you get are reasonably good.

Linking Building Plan

I have a link building plan to show you, but to make things simple, I have broken them down to three parts step-by-step.

#1) Simple Direct Backlinking

 

I know the graphics are terrible, I did it with MS Paint so bear with me. This is the fundamental form of backlinking, you publish content on a platform and place an optimized link back to your target, it could be your best post or your homepage URL, anything really.

#2) Linking With Support

 

The green link means it is a “support link“. As you can see both of these articles have a link to your target, and HubPages has a link to support an article you wrote over at EzineArticles, meaning the strength of the backlink to your target on EzineArticles is more powerful because it is supported by a link from HubPages.

#3) Linking With Double Support

In this form of backlinking, you can strengthen the Guest Blog link with the EzineArticles backlink as it is also supported by HubPages, this will enhance your overall backlinking effectiveness.

If you are confused, you can definitely ask me in the comments below, but it is quiet simple, basically, all articles you publish has a backlink to your target, but there’s a support link from HubPages to Ezines and another from Ezines to a Guest Blog.

The Ultimate Support-linking Order

You cannot switch the order of the support links, you can but you will have weaker link juice. You should always use support links this way:

HubPages —> EzineArticles —> Guest Blog

Web 2.0 —>  Article Directories —> Blogs

I’ll explain this, because HubPages is a Web 2.0 and their articles don’t get reviewed by human staffs, it is not as good as EzineArticles, whereas EzineArticles is an article directory that has a human editiorial team.

You guessed it, best of all, a blog, because blog owners will always precisely check the content that get published on their blogs, it is really difficult to guarantee your articles will get accepted (note I used accepted not approved).

The quality of the articles you publish need to be better and better as you move up to a different platform, as the reviewing process gets tougher than the previous.

Warning: Never Reciprocally Link

There’s a SEO term called Reciprocal Linking, for example, if you have a backlink from article A to article B, and article B also has a link back to article A, meaning, they are linking back to each other.

That is 100% no good, it won’t harm you in a bad way, but both of your links will weaken, even weaker than what you should get normally. Therefore, make sure you link articles in a linear fashion.

Critical Key Point of Link Building

Link building in reality is really just writing articles and linking them back to your own website, the most important aspect that people miss, is to write.

I know writing is a tedious task, I hate it too, how effective or how quick you will achieve your results depend on one key, and that is the number of articles you can write.

If you use this link building strategy properly, you will definitely see your desired increase in search engine ranking. The speed is keyword specific though.

As usual, let me hear your thoughts about this tactic. (or this ninja will Kung Fu chop you from behind :) )

Why Should We Blog About Blogging Before We Actually Make Money Blogging?

To be honest, I have regretted making this decision of choosing the blogging industry as my first blogging niche, if I could start over again, it would probably be something more of my interests like personal development or psychology.

Seriously, there are way too many blogs about blogging than actually something worth reading, now I’m not saying there’s anything bad about choosing the blogging industry as your prime niche (topic).

But the fact is, 99% of the bloggers who blog about make money blogging never end up making money, it’s true.

Some give up partially, some change their niche and some even stop blogging.

It’s not that the blogging niche is a difficult topic to write on, or that it isn’t interesting enough, it’s just hard to get the results you want. (that could be anything like living in a mansion)

There are of course, downsides and upsides of blogging about blogging, this is what I’ve come up with:

Advantages

  • There are many friendly fellow bloggers who are doing the same
  • Never get lost, just ask another blogger for help
  • You are smarter than bloggers who blog about something else
  • You have a nice and loyal fanbase of subscribers
  • You can pretty much write things that you don’t even have experience in like “ways to monetize a blog” or “how to make money online”

Disadvantages

  • There is a huge crowd of competitors
  • You need to write extremely good unique content to stand out from the crowd
  • You need work yourself to death and be creative at writing
  • You will see very little results in the early stages
  • There are not a lot of choices of monetization sources
  • It’s useless in the real world, your friends and family won’t give a damn.
  • You feel the need to constantly update your blog or your subscribers will leave

And there’s much more on both sides, the list could go on for a quiet long amount of time, it’s just if you have to actually spend time thinking about it, it means those are not really important, these points are what came up to my mind immediately.

I know peole who have read this will be turned down and motivated to change their niche (if they were blogging about blogging), but that’s partly my purpose.

Well, to those whom are concerned, don’t join the blogging niche unless you have actually made a living online from blogging (3-8 bucks a month doesn’t count).

If we are writing about blogging, if it’s so good and profitable as we say it, why haven’t we made money yet?

The truth is, we publish a post today, and another the next time, you receive comments, you reply to them, check out your fellows’ latest posts and give them a comment. You share new ideas and conversations. Blah blah blah…Rinse and Repeat.

You will never end up getting the optimal results you want to achieve.

As time pass by, we still work on our 9-5 day job, we still go to school (for my case), we still make our real income from the real world.

Really.

To make money online you need a lot of time.

Many people will disagree with me but this is a question for your own good, it’s for yourself to answer: Should you really be blogging about blogging?

I don’t think so.

I don’t believe that is your only expertise in this world, we aren’t born with skills, we learn everything, go ahead and learn something that you have honest passion in or knowledge/ experience in and make that your blogging topic.

As for me, I have already decided to start writing in another niche, of course, that means I will have real experience that one can’t learn from reading others’ work. (don’t worry I still write for you guys my Blog Lectures fans)

The moral of the story is, it’s not a story, you need to literally think about what you are doing, are you sure blogging is going to be your blog niche? If so, I can’t stop you.

There’s always time if you want to change your mind, go ahead and start another blog, don’t abandon your existing one if you have one, just keep blogging.

What do you think? Should you really be blogging about blogging? Or will you? Were you?

The Universal Reason Why You Fail At Accomplishing Anything

Want to have a successful blog? achieve a full time income home based online? grow a huge audience? increase brand awareness and popularity? Whatever you are trying to achieve, if you fail, I know the reason why.

I know exactly why you fail.

In fact, whenever you fail at something you want to achieve, I have a universal reason why that happens.

Remember this, it’s always and for the same reason why fail you at something whether it is in the form of physical, mental, online or offline, anywhere.

It’s called not knowing your path.

That might not reveal the exact answer, here are some more similar definitions so you might understand.

  • Researching the procedures to finish
  • Understanding the way to your goal
  • Knowing the steps to success

Here’s a better one: Knowing exactly why and what to do to achieve your goal.

The concept is simple, all you need to do is understand the structure of your objective.

We’ve been knowing this concept ever since we were born.

What do you need to do in order to play with your toys? Move towards your big-o-box and grab the trains and planes out.

What actions do you need to perform in order to watch your favorite TV show? Switch on the TV by pressing the power button.

What’s in common?

Knowing the cause of success.

When it comes to blogging, it’s the same, you need to know what to do in order to achieve that goal, that aim.

If you don’t know the procedures, you will panic, frustrate, scratch your head, and have absolutely no idea what to do.

You need to know what to do next.

Solution? Research and study.

Ever heard of something begin with “Researches and studies have found that blah blah blah“? Heh, do you understand it now?

No, I’m not suggesting you should begin all your introductions like that. All I’m saying is if you don’t understand the procedures that complete your goals, you need to research and study.

Of course, nothing is fail proof.

There are times you won’t accomplish your goal even though you have researched and studied the procedures for as long as 24 hours. How do you solve that?

Research why it failed.

Once you understand everything behind the scenes, success will naturally run to you.

I believe examples are the best in explaining things:

Say your goal was to get more traffic to your blog, then find out how to get traffic, the answer is promotion, and blog promotion means guest posting, that’s your answer.

Into the second tier, so you have traffic, you will need to set another goal, say, to turn first time visitors into loyal readers, then find out what makes them stay, the answer could be to display a mailing list sign-up box and capture email addresses.

Into the third tier, you have to be specific, don’t set generic goals like “to make money online”. Now you know what makes the traffic come back, a new goal is how to ensure the highest percentages of visitors will give you their email? The solution could be to offer a freebie (also called magnet or bribe).

And the list goes on until it resolves all your concerns and has helped you achieve your main generic goal. Yes, I said generic, the main goal is generic because the more tiers your procedures develop, the more specific each one get.

Summing it up

Every time if you want to achieve something, or make something happen, you need to set goals, and to successfully complete those goals, you need to research and study the procedures that accomplish those goals, remember, be specific with each further tier, not generic.

Note this concept applies not only to blogging but to anything throughout your life.

Once you understand something as clear as crystal, success is yours.

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