David Leonhardt’s SEO and Social Media Marketing

Tips for better SEO (search engine optimization) and website marketing …

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Archive for the ‘deep links’ Category

Why build links to non-converting “fly-over” pages

Monday, July 30th, 2012

What is a fly-over state, and what does it have to do with SEO?

You might have heard the term “fly-over”, referring to Utah and Wyoming and Colorado and Kansas and Nebraska.  It refers to those states that the politicians and business travellers rarely visit, but often fly over on their trips between east coast and west coast.

I like to think the same of New Brunswick – I have been in the province three times, twice driving through ( a “drive-thru province”?) and once to actually visit, and I have flown over it four additional time to get to the east coast.

Fly-over states get ignored.

Your website might have some fly-over pages, which might also get ignored.  But some of them are worth a second look.

I was looking through Google Analytics, and noticed a couple pages for one of my websites was getting a surprising amount of traffic.  The pages were describing very specific aspects related to the site’s topic.  Looking at the search terms that were bringing most of the visitors there, it was clear that these visitors were researchers, perhaps doing term papers or just curious.  These were NOT customers.  These are NOT buyers.

Aargh.  What a waste.

Or not?

Turning fly-over pages into landing pages

Not.  Here are five reasons to feed your fly-over pages, to build internal links to those pages and to build deep links from other pages on the web when you get the chance. (Here is a guide to building deep links.) In other words, why you should help build the ranking of these fly-over pages so that more people land on them.

  1. If people like the information on the pages, some of them will social share them on places like FaceBook and twitter and Google Plus.  And that gives your entire domain credibility with the search engines.  Tip: Make sure those pages are definitive sources of information, quotable and share-worthy.
  2. The more people visit, the better your Alexa Rank on Compete score, and that does count for something in many cases (like selling your site or seeking online partnerships).
  3. Some of those researchers might be bloggers, who will build links into the page and maybe also to your home page.  Either way, every link into your domain helps the entire domain – including your money pages.
  4. Some of the researchers might be journalists.  As long as the topic is related to your main site topic, it is to your advantage to be quoted in the media; don’t forget that offline media can drive customers, too.
  5. And you never know when a researcher might actually be interested in your product or pass your site on to someone they know who is interested.

Time to review your fly-over pages and see if any of them are worth turning into landing pages.  Your whole website could benefit from the valuable content on those pages.

 


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Ghost Town Link Building

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

When the search engines follow links to your website, do they find a ghost town from a movie set? You know what those are like, right?

A movie set ghost town is all facade. There are windows with sills, nicely painted or stained wood fronts, doors, front steps or at least a threshold. But if you actually open the door, it is empty inside. When you pass through the doorway, you find nothing . Not furniture. No interior wall, nor even side or back walls. No people. Only support beams to hold up the facade.

A lot of websites are like that. You look at their link profile, and – Wow! – does it ever look impressive. Hundreds of links from dozens of domains, maybe even thousands of links from hundreds of domains.

But wait, something looks out of place. Something doesn’t look natural. Something looks like… a facade. All the links point to the home page. All the links point to the website’s facade. Just like the cameras that always show us carefully just the fronts of the buildings, the links all show us carefully just the front page of the website. Like there is nothing else on the site worth linking to.

Like a movie set ghost town.

 

 

Deep Linking Makes It Real

When you build links to a variety of pages, you are showing the search engines that your site has depth. That it has substance. That it is real, not just a facade. And if you want the search engines to take your web address seriously, it helps to show that there is really something there.

Some tips on deep linking

Make sure you have content on your website. Content is not a home page or a sales page. Content is useful information. For instance…

How-to articles
Case studies
Interesting photos
Top 10 lists
Recommendations

But how does this content lead to inbound deep links to your website?

  • Let bloggers know about your content. Some will find it interesting and link to it.
  • Share on places like Twitter, MySpace, FaceBook, Pinterest, Digg, Tumblr, etc. (learn how to use these sites, build a network, and follow the official rules AND the unwritten guidelines)
  • Write articles about the same topic for other websites, and link back.
  • Create related videos for video sharing sites like Youtube, and link back to the original content.
  • Write related guest posts on other blogs, linking back to the original content.
  • Let the media (local, trade, etc.) know about the content, in case it will interest them.
  • Prepare news releases related to the content and distribute to press release websites.
  • Comment on related blogs, using the content pages as the “website URL” field.

 


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Importance of Deep Linking

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

I like how Peter Lee of Work From Home Business Blog explains the benefits of deep linking:

those that go directly to a site’s internal pages and are quite different from your normal generic links. They specifically relate to user’s goals and objective in business and therefore enhances usability, which can double your sales on average.

He goes on to explain what to do to make that deep-linked page a good landing page for the whole website, including the name of the website, and easy click to the home page and an accessible search box to find anything else on the website. This makes every page is a window to the entire website.

Here is where to read more about this deep link strategy. Don’t let the dancing bananas throw you; the post is meaty indeed.

 


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Why blogs are good for SEO

Monday, May 5th, 2008

Just a few reasons why a blog is a great tool for SEO.

  • Fresh content – the search engines love that.
  • Growing website – the search engines love that, too.
  • Multiple variations of keywords to attract highly-targeted long-tale searchers.
  • Highly relevant pages from which to link into the main pages of your website.
  • Keeps you in touch with your topic, not just the technicalities of SEO.
  • You can submit your blog to blog-specific directories, providing extra link love.
  • You can easily trade content, not just links.
  • Assuming you can generate even a modest amount of traffic for your blog, you can get links to individual posts through social bookmarking (especially if you have a tool like TheBookmarketer at the bottom of each post, as I do).
  • Blog open doors to real-people networking on the Internet, and that is always helpful when it comes to link-building and other forms of collaboration, such as blogrolls and webrings.

There are probably a few dozen more reasons why blogs are good for SEO, so why not post your favorite reasons in the comments section below?

 


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Deep Links in Bloggeries

Thursday, April 10th, 2008

With all the tempting examples of silly things we see on the Internet, not to mention pure stupidity, it is sometimes easy to overlook those who do things right.  Such an example is Bloggeries Blog Directory .  This is a mid-priced paid directory specifically for blogs.

First, they give you a link in the category listings, as 99% of directories do.

Then, they give you a details page, which maybe about 2% of directories do.  This is nice, because it is a page that is totally optimized for your website.  If the page has any link juice at all, it is a good page to have a link from.  This blog is listed here: David Leonhardt’s SEO Marketing Express.

Third, they offer deep links.  Now you have surely heard me expound upon the benefits of deep linking.  Directories I am involved with, such as WV Travel and DevDream, not only feature listings on multiple pages, but also include the option of up to three deep links for each listing.  Well, Bloggeries have outdone me on this.  Look at our listing again, and you will see they offer three deep links, and they also include links to our most recent posts across the middle of the page, thanks to the magic of RSS.

On top of that, they have a forum that is quite busy and one incentive to participate is that they provide backlinks in your signature line plus a link to the post you wrote (which is a great enticement for people to visit your blog, so write provocative titles!)

This really was not intended to be a review of Bloggeries, as much as another chance to talk about deep links.  But I suppose plans change.  :-)

 


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Link-bait content for viral marketing

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

Today I just want to share with you Jason Lee Miller’s list of what works as good link bait and ideal for viral marketing.  His whole article is great and can be read here, but this is the list I thought I would share directly with readers. 

The Resource Approach (Becoming the Expert In Your Field/Niche)

–    Create expert articles/lists/data sheets 
–    Create practical or fun tools
–    Write How-To articles
–    Create a comprehensive blog roll (give link love, get link love)
–    Compile informative news stories and articles


The News Approach

–    Get the scoop. Be first with industry news
–    Interview prominent people in your field
–    Investigate a hot topic
–    Do an exposé


The Humor/Novelty Approach

–    Post funny/interesting/amazing photos related to your industry
–    Create humorous/unique videos (Use Blendtec for inspiration)
–    Create lists; people love lists – Top 10 Ways to…; 10 Signs You’re…

 


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Geography based directories

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2007

Have you ever noticed that some directories have a two-track navigation?  You can drill down to the appropriate category.  And you can also drill down to the apporpirate location. 

When submitting your website to such directories, always drill down as low as you can in the geography are.  Even if you are submitting a website that services the world, submit at the city level.  Even if the lowest level is not yet indexed by Google or yahoo or MSN. Here is why…

 Suppose you submit your website to http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/0-world/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html .  You will get a link on that page.  If you take advantage of the deep linking opportunities (this directory allows three deep links, in addition to the home page URL), you will get 4 links all on the same page.

Suppose however, that you drill all the way down through http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/10-north-america/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html , http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/25-united-states/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html , http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/316-new-york/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html , http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/802-new-york-city/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html and submit your website at http://www.wv-travel-directory.com/directory/807-manhattan/187-cheap-air-travel/view.html .  I am, of course, assuming your offices are in Manhattan.  You get a link on the page you submitted to, plus on all the parent pages…all those pages you just navigated through.  Count them: 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6.  Six links, and if you submitted three deep links for your listing, each of those links also shows up on six pages, so you get a total of 24 links.

 


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Blog Optimization – Contextual Related Posts

Friday, August 31st, 2007

I just added a plugin to this blog.  It’s great for users and it’s great for SEO.  The  Contextual Related Posts Plugin adds to the bottom of this post a list of related posts based on the content of the post.  If you are reading thsi on a page that incldues other posts, click on the title of the post to go to its own page.

For readers, this is handy, because they can quickly read more on the same topic.

For SEO, this is handy because it creates automatic links between similar relevant content.  This is definitely a tool every blogger who wants to rank well should install. 

And by the way…a blog is increasingly something that every website should have.

 


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Self-serve blog links

Thursday, May 17th, 2007

Rick Hendershot, a fellow Canadian has come up with an interesting idea…not just because it is new and innovative, not just because he’s Canadian, not just because it’s a really useful idea, but also because it is something I had thought of earlier (same concept, different business model) but have been too busy to give it any serious thought.

You will find Rick’s self-serve blogging service Linknet2 an attractive alternative to the pay-per-post model, where you have to wait for someone to jump on your opportunity.  Unlike the pay-per-post model, you have very little control over the content and the link text, and even the number of links you garner.  So you control boith your reputation management and your SEO.  This is a great way to build those elusive deep links.

Self-serve blogging means that you write the post, you insert the links, etc.  Right now he has 13 blogs going as part of his system, but he soon will have more.   The key to how valuable this will be is whether he can keep the quality of postings high and get inbound link juice to each of the blogs. We’ll check in again to see how this new service is doing.

 


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Tips for Mining Google’s Backlink Data

Wednesday, April 4th, 2007

Since Google SiteMaps expanded to Google Webmaster Central, webmasters have some interesting new tools at their disposal.  One of those is the backlink checker.

It is widespread knowledge that a search for backlinks in Google brings back results that are pretty much useless.  I have yet to hear a single SEO specialist offer even a theory about the algorithm for such a search.  For the past year, Yahoo has been offering a much improved backing search. 

Of course, most webmasters know who links to them when they post to directories or engage in a link partnership with another website. But after a few months on the Web, most actively promoted websites of any discernable quality start attracting inbound links unbeknownst to the webmaster.  Google Webmaster Central now reveals those links, on a page-by-page basis.  Here are some ways that you can mine the data Google gives you:

  • Find out which pages are being linked to…you might have link-bait without knowing it.  For instance, if you have attracted three links to an article that you never even promoted, that’s a good sign that maybe you should promote the article; it is obviously of interest.
  • When you find a page that has attracted unsuspected links, review that page and develop a plan to create similar pages with similar characteristics that would also be of interest to other website owners who might link to your site without prompting.
  • Another thing to do when you find unexpected links to a certain page is to capitalize on the link strength of the page and optimize it for additional search terms (or optimize it for any search terms if this had not already been done). 
  • Find out who is linking to you.  There might be sites that come as a surprise.  If you see some sites that had unexpectedly link to you, search Google for similar sites, because they might also want to link to you..
  • Look who is linking to what pages on your site.  Perhaps there are other pages that would interest them.  If another site links to ten pages on your site, that’s better than linking to just one, right?
  • If you post articles to various article directories, this is a great way to find out who else has picked up your articles without your knowledge, and submit future articles directly to them.  For instance, I have many of my articles listed at David Leonhardt’s Idea Marketers Profile

Yahoo is still your best tool for competitive link intelligence, because Google Webmaster Central gives you information only on sites you have verified as belonging to you.  Together, these are two very powerful webmaster tools.

 


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