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Search Engine Optimization Getting Started (2010)

Knowing the best way to get links


From:

Search Engine Optimization Getting Started (2010)

with Jill Whalen

Video: Knowing the best way to get links

In the 15 years I've been doing SEO there have been a variety of methods people have tried in order to gain links to their web sites. Some work for a while, some never did. Since many of the old ways are still discussed online in many articles, forums, and blog posts, I wanted to explain why they're not worth your time and effort. First, you need to remember why you want links in the first place. Long before Google was a search engine, and it was Google that first popularized link popularity, web masters marketed their website by trying to get links.
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  1. 1m 33s
    1. Welcome
      1m 4s
    2. Using the exercise files
      29s
  2. 6m 20s
    1. Understanding how search engines work
      3m 50s
    2. What is SEO?
      2m 30s
  3. 25m 3s
    1. Introducing keyword phrases
      1m 21s
    2. The keyword research process
      4m 42s
    3. Performing keyword research
      4m 43s
    4. Winnowing out ineffective keyword phrases
      1m 58s
    5. Performing additional keyword research
      2m 44s
    6. Determining competitiveness of keyword phrases
      5m 42s
    7. Finding keyword gems
      3m 53s
  4. 12m 49s
    1. What site architecture means to SEO
      2m 1s
    2. Brainstorming main categories and subcategories for the web site
      4m 4s
    3. Creating a keyword phrase-to-page map
      3m 33s
    4. Using keywords in domain names and URLs
      3m 11s
  5. 18m 10s
    1. SEO in HTML tags
      1m 57s
    2. Title tags
      1m 56s
    3. Meta descriptions
      1m 33s
    4. Header tags
      1m 12s
    5. Anchor text
      1m 43s
    6. Alt tags
      1m 36s
    7. Writing effective title tags
      4m 42s
    8. Writing meta-description tags
      3m 31s
  6. 11m 44s
    1. What good content is and why it's needed
      1m 27s
    2. The different types of content pages
      3m 47s
    3. Using keywords in existing content
      1m 53s
    4. Writing new content for users and search engines
      4m 37s
  7. 16m 37s
    1. Understanding link popularity and why it's important
      2m 43s
    2. Introducing Google's PageRank
      2m 38s
    3. Knowing the best way to get links
      3m 12s
    4. Content creation and promotion as "link bait"
      3m 34s
    5. Real-world link bait ideas
      4m 30s
  8. 12m 7s
    1. Introducing social media marketing
      4m 3s
    2. Getting started with social media marketing
      2m 25s
    3. Participating in social media communities
      5m 39s
  9. 26m 31s
    1. Why rankings are a poor measure of success
      3m 13s
    2. Determining conversions and setting up goals in Google Analytics
      5m 37s
    3. Measuring search engine traffic
      11m 5s
    4. Measuring success beyond the search engines
      6m 36s
  10. 9m 19s
    1. Reviewing top techniques for SEO success
      1m 58s
    2. Additional resources
      4m 19s
    3. The future of SEO
      3m 2s

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Search Engine Optimization Getting Started (2010)
2h 20m Beginner Mar 31, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In SEO: Search Engine Optimization Getting Started, author Jill Whalen explains the importance of site rankings and why search engine optimization is necessary for increasing web site traffic. The course covers choosing the best keywords, performing keyword research, augmenting keywords with search-friendly site architecture, creating social media networking strategies, and measuring the success of an SEO campaign.

Topics include:
  • Understanding how search engines work
  • Researching and selecting keywords
  • Adding keywords to web pages, URLs, and HTML markup
  • Writing web page content based on selected keywords
  • Link building
  • Social media marketing without spamming
  • Setting up Google Analytics to track conversions
  • Measuring search engine traffic
Subjects:
Business Online Marketing Web SEO
Author:
Jill Whalen

Knowing the best way to get links

In the 15 years I've been doing SEO there have been a variety of methods people have tried in order to gain links to their web sites. Some work for a while, some never did. Since many of the old ways are still discussed online in many articles, forums, and blog posts, I wanted to explain why they're not worth your time and effort. First, you need to remember why you want links in the first place. Long before Google was a search engine, and it was Google that first popularized link popularity, web masters marketed their website by trying to get links.

But they did it because of the targeted traffic those links could bring. This is still the reason today why you should be trying to get them. While exchanging links with other sites isn't bad in and of itself and won't cause the search engines to penalize your website or anything, it can cause people to make bad decisions with which sites they end up linking to. I have seen websites that are so desperate for links they will link to any web site which agrees to link to theirs in exchange. This is not the way to get links and more so not the way to give links.

The search engines do look at what sites you're linking to and if you link to ones that they know are bad or spammy, those links will only hurt your site. But more than that, why would you want to point your website visitors to web sites you don't truly recommend? As links became more difficult to obtain, web masters have resorted to paying for links. The problem with this is that search engines dislike them, because if you pay for a link, it's not really a vote now, is it? So if the search engine can a spot a link as paid, they will disregard it and not count it towards your link popularity score.

In fact, they even request that you label paid links as sponsored by marking them with what's called a nofollow link attribute. This helps them filter them out of their algorithm. While you can certainly buy ads, which provide a link to you site if you would like, just remember that they may or may not count towards your link popularity score. If you decide to buy links, be sure they are ones that will bring targeted visitors to your site who are interested in what you sell. In general your best bet is to always avoid any sort of link building tricks and schemes.

While you can submit your site to websites that will accept any link, it's doubtful it will count for much with the search engines, dince they understand it's not a vote. Stay far away from anything that could be considered a link farm, which is just a ring of sites that are agreed to link to each other in order to increase their link popularity. You should also put the idea of buying a whole slew of sites just so you can link them altogether and increase your link popularity right out of your head. It's one of the oldest tricks in the book, which eventually get caught.

That said if you own a few sites and it make sense to link between them, you don't have to be afraid of doing so. Just be sure that the links makes sense within the context of the web site and you'll be fine. There are no shortcuts when it comes to link building. If something seems too good to be true, it's likely that it is. As with everything you're learning about SEO, it's going to come back to having something worth linking to.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Search Engine Optimization Getting Started (2010).


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Q: In the “Determining competitiveness of keyword phrases” tutorial in the SEO: Search Engine Optimization Getting Started course, the author details the use of the “allintitle” advanced search operator in Google.  While the operator works in the example given in the tutorial, Google will not allow usage of the “allintitle” operator for more than two keywords at a time.  Is there any workaround to this problem?
A: Google’s policy on the “allintitle” operator has become a major problem in trying to do some competitive keyword research. There is a workaround, although it makes searching slower. Follow these steps:
1) Click on Google's Advanced Search link, then add the desired keyword phrase to the Find web pages that have... "this exact wording or phrase." Then click the "+Date, usage rights, numeric range, and more" link.
2) In the "Where your keywords show up:" dropdown menu, change "anywhere on page" to "in the title of the page."
This should allow the use of the “allintitle” search without Google thinking the user is a robot. To do the next one more quickly, just hit the back button of the browser and change to the next keyword phrase.


Q: Allintitle searches on Google seem to yield wildly inconsistent results. How does the author handle such inconsistent data when looking for good keywords? Are these results a recent phenomenon? Can can allintitle searches still be used reliably?
A: Unfortunately, Google has recently made it difficult to do the allintitle searches. It is still useful to a certain extent, but only because there currently isn’t anything better out there to judge the competition of a site.
Q: As a result of Google changing the "select previous interface" function, the methods in used for the Keyword Tool in the tutorials no longer work. Is there a method that can be used with the new keyword search tool that will produce the same results as shown in the training course?
A: Unfortunately, Google switched to the new Keyword Tool and also removed many keywords that aren't "commercially viable" from the database, so the methods in this title will not work exactly as described. You can still change from broad match to exact, but it is, unfortunately, harder to find. Right now, there does not appear to be a more effective way to do keyword research. Unfortunately, the other vendors that provide keyword research tools for a monthly fee are no better than Google's free one. The best advice for now would be to not focus too much on the keywords and just pick those that seem to be the most relevant for your site.
Q: Google AdWords looks different on my Mac than it does in these tutorials. Can you help me find the option for "How would you like to generate keyword ideas" (either  "descriptive words or phrases" vs. "website content") that you show in the video on using the Keyword Tool?
A: The Keyword Tool has changed slightly in appearance since this course was published, but the functionality is essentially the same. Under the "Find keywords, Based on one or more of the following", you can choose to enter keywords, have them restricted to suggestions based on a certain website, or even based on a category, such as Apparel. You can use one or more of these options.
Q: Where can I learn more about internet marketing?
A: Discover more on this topic by visiting internet marketing on lynda.com.
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