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How To: Trackback For Traffic

5 Tips For Increasing Blog TrafficThis is post 5 of 5 in a series called, “5 Tips to Increasing Blog Traffic“.

Trackbacks are a blogs response to being linked to. For example, I post a snippet about your blog and in WordPress, I put your trackback URL in the “Trackbacks” field. When I publish my post, my blog will tell your blog that I wrote about you. Your blog will then link back to my blog because I’ve mentioned you in a post.

Here are some basic “How To” trackback guides:

Trackback in Movable Type

Trackback in WordPress (bottom part of page)

So how can this work to get you more traffic? It is easier than comments and surrounding the link can be some great eye candy.

When linking in a trackback, make sure that you follow these 3 simple do’s and don’ts:

1. Don’t state the obvious.

Here is an example of the obvious at a post titled, “Click Distance Matters“:

Click Distance Matters

This guy basically just recapped what he read. Would you click his link and go to his blog? Of course not, it is boring and old information.

Here is one other boring trackback:

In a post titled “Forward Links – Because who you link to matters” we find this:

Who do you link to?

Thank you Captain Obvious.

2. Do be honest.

Just because someone is well respected and a guru doesn’t mean they are right or that you have to agree with them. Todd Malicoat left a comment (sorry, can’t find the comment) about 2 years ago that I disagreed with and posted my response as a trackback. That trackback earned me a lot of readers and some good traffic.

In the same way, when you agree, post a trackback that creates continued interest in the conversation. For example, “I agree with what Malicoat says about breaking up with clients. I just broke up with my first client and would add to Malicoat’s list by saying, ‘This will be my last bit of contact with you. I wish you well.’ That tells your client that it is over permanently and he can no longer expect a response from you.” By the way, that’s true, I just did that last week.

Remember that you can disagree in a polite way without being offensive and putting a foot in your mouth.

3. Don’t trackback spam.

Trackback spam is one of the fastest ways to make sure nobody reads your blog and that your quality content doesn’t get the respect it deserves.

Before Guy Kawasaki changed his trackbacks, I would get about 300 visitors per month from about 2-3 trackbacks per month. That is just from one site. I left trackbacks for every post I wrote! You can too.

Find someone talking about something similar and leave them a trackback, you’ll get a great relevant link, you’ll create value for their website and possibly acquire a new reader!

By |March 20th, 2007|Link Building, SEO/SEM|9 Comments

Get 1 Link and Go! Drive By Linking.

In the early 2000’s, a link was a link. Plain and simple, more links, better rankings. But that was 7 years ago. Today, Googlebot is smarter and can learn to hate you. So how can you fix that? Get 1 link per domain and get out of there.

Here is what I mean:

Find a blog you like, leave a comment, find another blog you like.

Or:

Find a site that is relevant, email the webmaster, asking for a link on a certain page, buy a permanent link, and don’t buy any more links from that seller.

With this strategy, you’re protecting your site from Google’s backlash, it is also harder to detect these links because they are in-content, topical, relevant to your industry, in fact almost impossible to detect by a bot.

It is hard to link to these types of pages because they are hard to find. You can look in the comments of most SEO blogs because people usually are looking for links so they hit and run the blog.

There are about 15 blogs that I like enough and find valuable enough to comment on regularly. These blogs I don’t hit and run, but most others I do.

Get a link and go!

By |March 16th, 2007|Link Building, SEO/SEM|32 Comments

10 Steps to Rank for Your Company Name

5 Tips For Increasing Blog TrafficThis is post 4 of 5 in a series called, 5 Tips to Increasing Blog Traffic.

4. Rank For Your Company Name

If you are trying to increase traffic for your website (aren’t we all), then you need to focus on what people will be searching for, and get listed in the top 10 results for those search terms. If you are targeting certain keywords (in lieu of a company name), then use this method with keywords instead of a company name.

First a bit of help for those new to the process. Google likes old websites and websites that are considered authoritative to link to your website. This method will help you get a few good links on old websites and authority websites.

Keep in mind the following:

What you write doesn’t really matter, you just want the link.

Write something different for every site, don’t copy and paste.

Use all 10 tips, and then find 3 more of your own.

Here are 10 tips to get you to the top of the search engines for your company name. These are listed in order of effectiveness.

For some proof, here is my company name (AfterHim Media, not competitive at all) listed at the top of Google, Yahoo!, and MSN Live for AfterHim Media.

1. Get a targeted domain (My Domain)

YourExampleKeywords.com is going to have a difficult time ranking for a company website, unless there is no competition. A better corporate domain is YourCompanyName.com that links to YourExampleKeywords.com. This approach will help get you ranked for your company, then you can link to your keyword site.

2. Establish your About Us page (My About Us)

Your “About Us” page should be linked from every page on your company website. Some people like to use a sub domain (about.example.com) but I prefer just a straight page (example.com/about.html). Either way, make sure this page has company executives, biographies, company name, address, and contact information. Optional for this page is a media kit, advertising information, promotions, company history, refund information, corporate credit rating, etc. Those “optionals” could be on there own page if you would rather. My About Us page is incomplete right now, and just has a short biography about the company.

3. Create a Squidoo Lens (My Squidoo Lens) (Create Squidoo Account)
SquidooSquidoo is a website that allows users to create mini websites (called a “lens”). This lens allows you to post company information, links, biographies, pictures, guest book entries, etc. We’re only concerned about the links. Put some information about your company, and link to your company website using in-content links on both the main page, and the about you part of Squidoo. If you notice, Google lists Squidoo as the second result behind my company name.

4. Create a Google Page (My Google Page) (Create a Google Page)

Google Pages are Google’s way of offering small website with an easy to user interface designed by novice website creators and spammed by experienced website creators. Whichever side you are on, you should have a Google Page with a link to your company website. It is extremely easy to do, the templates populate automatically, and all you do is hit “Publish”.

5. Create a WordPress blog (My WordPress Blog) (Create a WordPress Blog)

WordPress blogs, like Blogger blogs are easy to use, simple to set up, and have a great interface. You don’t need to know anything more than how to click in a box and type some information about your company. After you’ve done that, click submit and you’re blog is there. Simple and easy, just how I like it.

6. Create a Blogger Blog (My Blogger Blog) (Create a Blogger Blog)

Blogger (blogspot), like Google Pages, is an easy to use blog creator. Blogger is hosted by Google so you don’t have to host the blog on your domain, nor do you have to have any website knowledge. Just create the blog, click “Write Post” then “Publish”. Your blog is on the web, Blogger now links to your domain, and you’re ready to rock! Did I mention it’s free and only takes about 8 minutes from start to finish?

7. Create a Newsvine account (My Newsvine) (Create a Newsvine)

Newsvine is a news site written by users. You can create a Newsvine account then create your own “Vine“. This is usually a subdomain with your company name. You can then write a small tidbit of info about your company and link to your site. Simple, free and easy.

8. Wikipedia Entry (Create Wikipedia account)

The smallest entry that I was able to find was one for Shawn Hogan, owner of DigitalPoint.com. His entry is basically about being sued by the MPAA, but shows how you can have a small entry for your company. Make sure you check this information frequently because other people can come through and spam and blast your entry. Once you’re signed in, you can click the “Edit” button to edit an entry. You can also create a new entry by searching (left menu) for your company name. If nothing comes up, click where it says, “Create This Page”. Wikipedia isn’t an easy system to use and you’re company might not get listed after you create the page. I’ve not had success with Wikipedia.

9. Create a MySpace account (Create a MySpace)

Honestly I’ve never created a MySpace account. Not a personal account, not a spammy account, nothing. I’ve never really even browsed the site. However, I know thousands have been made (and were made) by spamming MySpace using bulletins and new accounts. Now is the time to create a legitimate account, with your company name and link to your company site. You’re not trying to create a huge MySpace influence, just get the link and get out. If you don’t, you’ll get sucked in and you’ll feel you need to have MySpace friends. Trust me, you don’t need them.

10. Use a Windows Live Space (Create Windows Live Space)

I don’t have a Windows Live Space. I kept getting a page that told me someone was logged in with my email address. I cleared my cookies, tried a new email address, but still someone was signed in. I tried to use the “Logout” button but that didn’t work. I assume that Windows Live Spaces are similar to the other tips posted above. It is number 10 because currently it does nothing but frustrate me. Hopefully you have better luck.

Not getting the results you’re looking for?? Try to interlink a few of these tips. For example, link your Newsvine page to your WordPress blog. This will help each place get indexed and provide value for each link.

I’ve had wonderful success using these methods for myself and 3 clients that had brand new websites. One of my clients still ranks #2 because there was a company with the same name and a website that is 4 years old. #2 isn’t bad for a 2 month old website.

Any other tips and tricks that you’ve used to get your company name to the top of the SERPS?

By |March 12th, 2007|Link Building, SEO/SEM|7 Comments

The Supplemental Study

In the recent weeks there has been a lot of talk about supplemental results. Supplemental results occur when Google thinks that the pages in your site are all the same page (or too similar) to list them as their own entry.

This usually happens to archive pages where you’ll have the following identical pages:

example.com/post-title
example.com/2006
example.com/2006/04/post-title

Even those these pages are identical, they are listed under 3 (or more) URL’s.

This will almost always occur when you use a CMS (content management system, like Drupal) or blog software (like WordPress).

SEOBlackhat said, “a little less than a month ago we…2. Listed titles of every post with links every page.”

So they put like 100 recent posts in the sidebar of every page. I can do that.

As a result SEOBlackhat says, “Also of interest is that SEO black hat had gone supplemental after 182 results prior to the experiment. Today, SEO Black hat does not go supplemental until 554 results.”

So I can do that. I have a site that is currently supplemental after 8 results. #’s 9, 10 and beyond are all supplemental!

Supplemental

So taking SEOBlackhat’s theory that “Click Distance Matters”, I’m going to put 40 posts in a “Recent Posts” sidebar, and see if that helps. I’ll take a look every few days and report any news as a result.

If you want, you can track the results by searching Google for “site:vooed.com”.

Day 1 Update: Now supplemental after 7 results. Not good so far.

Day 5 Update: Not supplemental until 12! Some progress is better than none. (Thanks Andy for noticing)

Day 10 Update: Supplemental after 6. Isn’t that number supposed to go up? I’m also changing the idea behind the site.

Day 29 Update: Supplemental after 29!  Moving on up.  Looks like the change to the site has helped.  Although unfortunately Google is indexing my menu bar before the post itself.

By |March 11th, 2007|SEO/SEM|4 Comments