When I’m reading over notes for SEO Liverpool and Summit Online Marketing, I feel it’s quite important to revisit important information, especially if I’m receiving questions around the subject.
I received an enquiry about a website that had lots of links and believe they’re getting penalised for it. The copy seemed succinct, keyword rich and the meta data looked good.
A few years ago I remember reading that over 100 links on a page can be considered a link farm.
My quick bit of advice revolved around PageRank sculpting to enhance search engine ranking. The classic way to negotiate lots of links is in changing them to no-follow links. This is a quick and easy way of not passing on your hard earned ‘juice’ to unnecessary third parties.
Although how much juice still gets through is debatable.
On closer inspection they had gone with the classic ‘ball’ linking structure (Every page links to every other page). It’s not very effective at conserving and spreading the link juice (PageRank, link reputation and link popularity).
I wasn’t saying this was a bad thing, but with SEO, testing is key. I advised changing the structure to what is known as a ‘pyramid’ linking structure.
A pyramid linking structure
Typically all the links leaving the home page are no-followed, except the one leading to the sitemap. The sitemap has normal links to everything, except the home page. With internal pages, everything is no-follow except the link back to the home page. It creates a feedback loop, concentrating all the link love back to the home page. This could mean you’ll be getting a lot of traffic from your internal pages… depending on your content!
Food for thought.
Here at SEO Liverpool I’ve spent a lot of the day chatting with various people about duplicate content filters… do they exist or not? Well, the answer seems to be yes. BUT, as far as I can tell, there are no penalties for using duplicate content. The only problem is that the page with the best PageRank, will be the one to appear at the top of the search engine results, for a search matching a phrase, which is found on multiple pages. When you think about it, it makes sense. Effectively it means, “sure, go ahead, use duplicate content, but be aware that unless you have the best PageRank for a particular page, that content isn’t going to do you any good.” … which effectively stops people who are slapping up sites with the same content everyone uses, but doing very little to promote their sites, from getting top search engine placement. … and also explains why an original article, when submitted to a high PageRank article directory, results in the article directory being listed at the top of the search engine results for a matching phrase, above your original page containing “your” article.
So… you have several options…
1: Use freely available content, and know that your site is unlikely to get good search engine rankings, unless you heavily promote your pages and get them good PageRank.
2: Use freely available content and re-write it extensively.
3: Write your own, original, content for every page.
4: Use articles that very few other people will be using… from sources such as Article Underground (http://www.scamfree.com/articles/) as I’ve been recommending. If each page you create has 20 similar pages out there on the web, do some promotion, use the Article Underground blogs as announcement services, get your page to PR3 or 4, and your page will be the one at the top of those 20 pages in the search engine results.
I’ve dug out some information for an SEO Client of Summit Online Marketing Liverpool.
This is an incredibly common question and not very easy to answer in it’s current form. I’ve read a variety of posts on the subject over the past couple of years and here’s the general consensus.
Question: What’s the fastest way gain a high search engine ranking?
Lets break it down, all seasoned SEO Consultants understand the mantra ‘Content is King’ therefore the more relevant the content the better. A natural reaction to informative relevant and contextual content are links and these certainly help the cause.
So how do you generate content;-
Answer: From your Blog/News, any website that doesn’t generate content has a massive disadvantage unless awareness of the brand is already high.
I’d like to add that you can generate links from someone else’s blog, anarticle submission, a press release, or a directory like Yahoo. It doesn’t really matter where the links come from. But it’s the quality of the link that
has the most impact. The more PR (PageRank) and link popularity that a page has, the more of its “juice” that it will pass on to you. For example, the “real” purpose of most blogs, are to get deep incoming links to my main site. I post just a portion of an article on my blog, and then I deep link to the full story on my site. That way, all stories on my main site, have at least one incoming link.
In addition to the PR of the page hosting the link, what you say in the link is very important. Use your keywords in your links. They will build a Reputation for the pages that you link to. And that’s important for good SEO.