SEMpdx session: Link Development – The Original Web 2.0?

Filed in Conferences/Educ. by Matt McGee on March 8, 2007 0 Comments

SEM PDX logoLink Development – The Original Web 2.0?

When I made my first speaking presentation last year at SES San Jose, it helped to see a couple familiar faces near the front of the audience: Rebecca Kelley and Matt Inman from SEOmoz. So I promised I’d return the favor for Rebecca’s first speaking session, and then the fact that I’d also just met Scott Fish and Ben Lloyd was all the more reason to attend. The information was, as expected, on the basic side — this was the Basics track, after all. The Q&A at the end was interesting, and I’ll include those thoughts below.

Ben Lloyd, Amplify Interactive
Rebecca Kelley, SEOmoz
Scott Fish, FishSEO

Rebecca Kelley
– link to your site = editorial vote
– SEs trust what others say about you more than what you say; links are more difficult to obtain than on-page factors
– SEs know where link points, where on the page it is, anchor text, relationship between domains (i.e., reciprocal links), how old a link is, trends over time (how quickly links are acquired)

Developing Links
– naturally (good content)
– manually (contact others)
– buying links
– viral marketing

Best Practices for Linkbuilding
– use proper anchor text
– linked-to- page must be crawlable
– nofollow or javascript = no link love for you

Value of a Link
– trustworthy sites are better (.edu or .gov, news portal)
– must be from relevant site
– check rankings/power of page linking to you
– SEOmoz Page Strength tool — “it’s like Google’s PageRank, except it’s not useless”

Pitfalls to Avoid
– forgetting to 301 pages when you change/move site
– don’t split site into multiple domains
– falling for the “get a crapload of links for X dollars” spam
– falling for the “we’ll submit your site to a million search engines”

Scott Fish

“Emotional Aspect of Link Building”
– consumers buy on emotion and justify on reason

Two Ways to Gain Links

1) Homepage/sitewide links
– more visibility/traffic
– possibly hundreds/thousands of links if its a sitewide
– can take advantage of competitor’s authority

2) LInks in a blog post or article
– varied anchor text
– contextual
– more targeted
– be controversial – bloggers love a good fight
– linkbait via great content
– networking – share and benefit from readers

Emotional Appeal
– be complimentary in approach; offer to link to them first

Ben Lloyd

Case Study – – no resource site existed in this niche
Case Study –


I think I’m guilty of wondering why conferences do “Basics” and “Fundamentals” tracks, but sitting in on one really shows why they’re important. There’s still a lot of misunderstanding out there in the business community about the basics, and the Q&A session here offered plenty of evidence. I’m not going to share any specific questions, because that’s not fair to the person who asked. The people who asked questions deserve credit for being at the conference, and credit for wanting to learn. Scott, Rebecca, and Ben did a fine job answering and steering everyone in the right direction, and that’s what matters most. Thumbs up all around from me.

[tags]sempdx, linkbuilding, seo[/tags]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *