A query came from Web SEO Analytics.”They asked, Hello, Matt. A recent article of Danny Sullivan’s suggests that Google uses Twitter and Facebook links as a ranking signal. Can you confirm this? Can you elaborate a little bit more on this?”
We do use Twitter and Facebook links and ranking, as we always have, in our web search rankings. But in addition, we’re also trying to figure out a little bit about the reputation of an author or a creator on Twitter or Facebook .he made clear it with an e.g. , “I filmed a video back in May 2010, where I said that we didn’t use that as a signal. And at the time, we did not use that as a signal. But now, we’re taping this in December 2010, and we are using that as a signal.” So the exhaustive place, if you really want comprehensive information, is to go look up Danny Sullivan’s article, and we can leave that as a link in the description of the video. But essentially, the web search quality team has a lot of different groups and a lot of different offices. So people, including the original blog search team, people who worked on real time search, have been working on using these sorts of things as a signal.
Primarily, it has been used a little bit more in the real-time sort of search, where you might see individual tweets, or other links showing up and streaming up on the page. We’re studying how much sense it makes to use it a Little more widely within our web search rankings.
Now, there’s a few things to remember. Number one is, if we can’t crawl a page, if we can’t see page, then we can’t really assign page rank to it, and it doesn’t really count. So if we’re able to obtain the data, then we can use it. But you know, if, for some reason, a page is forbidden for us to crawl, or we’re not able to obtain it somehow, then we wouldn’t be able to use that within our rankings. This is something that is used relatively lightly, for now, and we’ll see how much we use it over time, depending on how useful it is, and how robust it ends up being. The one thing I would caution people about, is don’t necessarily say to yourself, aha.Now I’m going to go out and get reciprocal follows, and I’m going to get a ton of followers, just like people used to get a ton of links. In the same way that page rank depends on not just the number of links, but the quality of those links, you have to think about, what are the followers who mean quality? You know, who are the people who actually are not just bots, you know, or some software program, or things like that? So it is a signal that we’re starting to use a little bit more. You’ll see it most within our sort of real time search, as it’s streaming through. But we’re looking at it more broadly within web search as well.
Google recently penalized lot of websites that were buying links. In this process some sites were penalized even though they don’t buy links. Google’s new algorithm that detects paid links is a miserable failure according to me. So many sites got affected and even 2 or 3 our sites got affected. We never bought links for our client sites but 2 sites were affected because it looks like the backlinks were bought. The pattern of our links are no-where the same as the paid links that others get for their sites but still we lost 5 or 10 places for some important keywords. I can understand an automated algorithm cannot be 100% accurate in detecting paid links but they should also be careful before pulling the plug. I feel more manual review should happen so that the sites affected are really buying links and not just because their backlink pattern might look similar to a site that buys links for top ranking. The worse thing here is so many sites that are buying links got away with it and the sites that never bought links got caught. I hope Google is more careful with their buying links algorithm in future.
Google and other search engines have always stressed for people to get only natural links. The whole link based algorithm depends a lot on natural links. Scientists wrote link based algorithm because links are natural and more reliable. Talking about widget embedded links this has been in debate for a long time. Search engines always have mixed opinion on this.
Embedding links in widgets has been in existing from the day widgets were introduced. Statcounter.com a world famous tracking company which provides free tracking were PR 10 because of the links embedded in their counter. Seeing this people started this natural usage of links in a commercial way. People started approaching commercial counter companies to embed their links when free counters are distributed in exchange for a payment. Lots of companies got temporary benefit from it but the search engines immediately woke up to the occasion. An SEO company which did this as part of their link building strategy was completed banned from Google’s search engine. Also Google started implementing link based penalties like the -60 penalty for sites that use widgets to embed links. Even we were affected a bit but later recovered. So is this ethical? . In my opinion I feel the user should know that the link is embedded into the widget code as long as they know it its fine. But if the links are embedded without the user’s knowledge then it’s wrong. I feel search engines too have similar view. People should have the ability to embed the link or remove it or make it no-follow. If they can do it I am confident the search engines will accept it whole heartedly.
Google has recently made a lot of changes to their site links. When site links ( links that appear below the site when the domain name or other major name that the domain represents appears ) came into existence people thought its a weird thing. But now Yahoo, Bing both uses them copied from Google. Its an interesting way for people to find pages to a site they get a chance of multiple pages to be clicked from the search results itself. I have personally used site-links for a long time. Every one out of 2 times i have clicked a site link than the primary result. So yes as an active internet user i use sitelinks which i feel is a big achievement from Google. A trial has worked for them and we usually see tracking URLs in Sitelinks so even Google is monitoring the clicks on sitelinks.
Today Google has improvised a lot when it comes site links. They came up with a site link similar to simple single line text links we see it visible these days. Take a look at the following example.
Now furthur improvization they are able to show actual links in descriptions it was not the case before. It shows how much effort Google is putting into their organic search too. They know Organic search is their primary area and they need to keep focusing on improving it. I am sure we can see a lot of improvization in future.
What is hot linking?
Directly embedding or linking to a resource on another server, such as an image or video, so that it appears to be part of the linking website. Hot linking provides the ability within an online manual to jump from place to place by clicking on table of contents and index entries, cross-references, or icons.
So can hot linking benefit you. Yes I would say hot linking benefits you because you can get some quality traffic to your images from other websites that embed your image. We get loads of traffic from hot linking most of them are valid visitors. People who follow hotlink images also tend to look around your website for other images or videos. So yes there is solid benefit. But there are some draw backs imagine your image is added to an adult site and Google image crawler picks it up it might damage the reputation of your website and your image might start featuring only when safe search filter off. Most people don’t switch off safe search filter so its recommended to keep note of who is hot linking if you see a bad source feel free to request them to remove your image.
I found this when I was going through youtube for some SEO related videos. I thought this one was funny but not so informative. Its worth watching just for the sake of fun:
Here is the lyrics / transcript for that video:
Chuck raps about link building.
You create a new site and its content heavy,
With the right amount of pictures you believe it’s ready,
So you launch it trying to put money in the bank,
But when you search and try to find yourself, you can’t,
So you thank until your mind goes blank,
Got titles and headers but no page rank,
Sooner or later it will show if I wait,
In the meantime make sure my code validate,
And it do,
Hmm, now what I’m supposed to do,
Add meta information and alt tags too,
Still don’t get listing,
Something must be missing,
Brad and Chuck recommended doing link building,
So you start hunting down sites like a predator,
Doing back links on all your competitors,
Whoever linking to them need to link to me,
Is it free, do we swap, or do I pay a fee,
Well take it from us, before you take that step,
Some things about the site that you might want to check,
Did they use a link farm or some dirty tactics,
Could have a bad effect on your site that’s drastic,
Could’ve link baited, look at what they created,
Compare it to yours, is it even related,
Take the time, go inspect and see,
Take advantage of paid directories,
If you follow all the steps with a little bit of patience,
Get links from relevant sites that are favorites,
Update your content on the regular basis,
I’m confident you’ll make it to first page placement
There is no limitation in getting backlink for a high quality site. Especially high quality site like ours get 100s of backlinks from good sources as well as some bizarre sources. There are lots of bizarre links we get when we monitor our blogs here is a list of some of them.
1. From PDF and Doc files which are actually not html or web based files. PDF ( Portable Document Format ) is a format used to create important documents, thesis, projects, invoices and lots of other users. We get links from PDF files as well as doc files from some edu sites as well as other sites which use our website as reference for their project or report.
2. From PPT: Google , yahoo, MSN all top 3 search engines crawl power point slides effectively we have some Gov sites use our website and tools as reference on their PPT slide shows and this turn up as backlink for our website. You know edu, gov backlinks are some of the best backlinks you can get for your website.
3. From Other language sites: We get links from Japanese blogs, European language blogs, urdu blogs, Arabic blogs and from lots blogs in different languages. Though we are an English only site we have people visiting our website all over the world.
4. In college personal project pages: We get links from some students from major universities who use our tools as a testing base for their projects, also they use our articles and other good resources we have for their college projects. We get some good quality links from this source.
We get lot more bizarre links which I will share in future in our blog.
- Choose quality over quantity:- Link quality carries more weight than quantity. Spend time getting the highest quality links pointing to your site.
- Begin with Web directories:- Yahoo Directory and DMOZ are two reliable places for high-quality links.
- Harness online publicity:- How-to tips, helpful articles, even press releases often attract links from other websites. The search engine optimization world calls this “link bait .”
- Use blogs and forums wiselyL:- Blogs and forums can call attention to useful information on your site.
- Use search engines to research link development:- Look at competitors’ sites to determine their link development strategy. It can help you with your own. What newspapers and media outlets do they use for online publicity? What Web directories link to their sites? No link popularity checker (“link: domain.com” in Google, “linkdomain: domain.com” in Yahoo) can substitute for doing the research yourself.
New webmaster spends too much time in getting inbound link and forgets completely about the value of outbound link. For all new sites outbound link are more important compare to inbound link.
Getting an outbound link provide you more exposure to the wider web and is a proof for the existence of your site. Search engine crawl links to go from one page to another, all you need is one inbound link to your site to get the whole thing crawled whereas outbound links tell much more than inbound links. They tell your visitors that you are willing to provide valuable information.
Most of the webmaster care where there traffic comes from, if you link out then you will appear in referrer logs. Outbound links helps to get traffic from webmaster that are curious enough to know about you that why linked them. They will even get back to you if they like what you are doing it.
With this great differences it is clear that though inbound links helps to get the page rank but out bound links are more important drive traffic to your site and to make trade which is the main aim of online marketing strategy.
Yes, deep linking is better than home page linking because everyone knows that you have home page and they can find it easily. But deep link is more effective than home page link building.
Here are some reasons why deep linking is better than home page link building:
- You can target the specific keyword.
- It is easier to push up your internal pages than a whole site.
- Links in multiple pages looks more natural than all links in home page. It makes the page crowded and unattractive.
- Visitors can easily remember your home page URL but it is much difficult for them remember your page permalinks for your internal pages.
- It is the only all internal pages that cover all relevant topics that the visitor may need it.
When you start with link building, try to figure out the best anchor text for your internal pages and list out some then vary all the anchor text. Choose the most appropriate anchor text and do as much as deep linking you can with the help of various sources. Deep linking provides you with better result than only home page link building.
So, while link building only go for deep link building as it is more productive and effective.
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