This is the third and final installment of the link building tutorial. If I have left any types of links out, please add them to the comments and we can discuss them there. I have been very opinionated throughout this tutorial as I have been hands-on numerous campaigns since the late 90’s to date, much of what is here is based on experience and not necessarily on fact, as I believe only Google can give us the facts (which of course no one is going to give away all the answers), all we can do is utilize what we see working in each industry and make decisions on the types of links to use based on research.
To read this tutorial in its entirety, please start at the beginning:
- Part 1 : Link Building & Determining Link Quality
- Part 2 : Link Building : Social Links, Reciprocal Links and .edu & .gov Links
Article Links and Press Release Links
I classified these together because they are both syndicated and loose value over time as they get archived. Similar to blog posts in adding a quick short burst of link weight. Unfortunately most article sites are devalued by Google the way directories are since they are often used for spam and generally offer recycled content. Most articles are duplicated via syndication and can cause duplicate content issues to occur, so to some extent these need to be monitored to avoid negative effects which are rare until they happen to you.
There are three kinds of articles. The first are the garbage articles written solely for the purpose of a content link to the target site and/or to generate clicks on paid search links (not paid text links), but ads like Google Adsense ads. The second are articles made for traffic. WoooHooo! What would you say if I told you articles lead to traffic and/or business? You would do it yourself, well here you go.
It is my understanding, and many other SEO’s that I speak to seem to share this opinion, that Search Engines like articles for multiple reasons that may include the link bait factor that many articles may have.
The Fading Power of Articles: Like blogs, articles start out with a link from a top level page and as a sole original piece of work. Many MFA (Made for Adsense) sites will pull article feeds. Some good sites will use them as well so you generally get a mix when syndicating. They tend get archived and become less powerful of a link as they fade in presence and importance to the sites architecture. They also get duplicated out of Google and fall into the supplemental index, or into the world of duplicate obscurity. Unfortunately Google does have a duplicate content filter that lets a percentage of original content fall victim to duplication and it buries it in its index. I recommend that you do NOT syndicate articles that you also place on your site. We forbid our clients to do this as a large percentage of duplicate content on a site can potentially cause the whole site to be devalued. This is not a stab at the Search Engines, just a fact that should be addressed because if the writers and artists loose their work and even after complaining cannot get credit for it, then the current method of analyzing is just plain old wrong.
Press releases offer a similar syndicated power, but usually across better networks of sites (to some extent), or at least the higher paid syndicated releases do. We like the PRWeb.com releases. Press releases often reach news sites, portals and even get exposure on large news networks (with broader syndication more along the lines of a PRnewswire release which has the largest distribution of all the PR Syndication services). Press releases are often commented on and some do in turn generate traffic for a short period of time. Press Releases can, like articles, also generate interest and conversions for your products and services. Press releases pass PageRank from the initial syndication and then the sites that pick them up. They have a slightly better performance then articles and sometimes better than blogs, but that is really a speculative theory. We recommend the use of Press Releases as a great part of any link baiting and/or link building campaign.
Resource Page Links
They are what they say they are, links on resource pages of websites. If they are not on networks, these links can be powerful as it is one link on a related site. Keep in mind related is the key. This increases the theme-ing of the on-page SEO and the Industry based popularity. Resource links are best as one-way links. Many companies now try and make them three (3) way links, which means links are exchanged from multiple sites. The three-way links are believed to have banned some companies from Google feeling at the time it was spam. Threeways do not seem like a problem, but because they have a desired goal of increasing one-way link popularity, that could be considered spam. The interesting way to look at this would be to say something to the effect of “anything with the intention of increasing ones rankings could be considered spam”, which in turn would be called SEO which would technically mean that anything we do to make a site rank better is against some Search Engines Terms of Service. – Go Figure.