By now it should be no surprise that what you will be doing primarily is setting up a series of backlinks to your client s website. The sites I will recommend have a high Page Rank score (usually PR 5 and higher) and will carry a lot of sway with Google when the links are finally crawled and credited to your client. However, there are also some on-page SEO items you can do for the client (or at least point out to him for his webmaster to address) that will also help tremendously. Let s start with those. If you don t already have it, I strongly urge you to grab a copy of Market Samurai.
This is a program that crawls the search engines for terms you specify, bringing back the top 10 websites for that term, and telling you if those sites have satisfied about a half dozen different criteria. What Market Samurai looks for are backlinks to the top 10 sites (and it tells you how many each site has pointing towards it), if any of the backlinks are .gov or .edu links, whether H1 tags were used in building the site, if the keyword(s) appear in the domain name, whether the competition appears in either or both the Yahoo Directory or DMOZ, and whether the keywords appear in the website title. All of these factors are taken into consideration by Google when analyzing a site for inclusion in the search results for a particular key word or phrase. And frankly, very few local websites satisfy even half of these factors.
You will find that a lot of these websites are cookie cutter sites that the client bought based on a phone call or visit from a salesman, or worse, got the site for free from the phone company when they paid for a year s worth of advertising in the Yellow Pages. In either event, the sites were built by designers with little or no experience in SEO, and the end result probably looks nice, but Google can t find a single reason to include the site anywhere near the top of the search results for the very phrases the site exists to appear for. Luckily, you can handle the backlinking without any input from the client.
You or the client s webmaster (and I prefer to let the webmaster handle this) can add H1 tags to the site s headlines. They can add the keywords to the site s title. They can create a new page and add the keyword or phrase to the website name. And all of this can be accomplished in under a day. If the client were to do all of this (and satisfy every factor in the Market Samurai SEO Competition Analysis) they probably wouldn’t need a single link to jump instantly up to Page One.
That s how poorly the competition has optimized their sites. However, we are going to add a bunch of links to the site over time, and usually the first batch we add is more than enough to land us on Page One and put us that much closer to our payday. The link s we are going to add are what are known as Angela s Links which is the shorthand way of referring to a set of websites mailed out each month by a gal named Angela. Each of these websites has a forum as a part of the website, and we are going to join that forum and then post a link to our client s website, using the chosen key word or phrase as our anchor text. You can learn more about Angela s Links at:
http://angelasdiscountmarket.com/backlink_builder1.html And for the record, this is NOT an affiliate link (I don t think she even has an affiliate program, to be honest) and I do not make a penny from her for this referral. I m recommending this product because I use it for linking my customer s sites and I ve moved every one of my clients to Page One of the Google Search Results for their chosen key words. So ignore this recommendation at your peril. When you buy Angela s monthly link packet (30 links for $5, so don t go bitching about the extra costs involved here) she will provide you in excruciating detail the exact steps you need to follow with each forum to get the links posted, so I am not going to spend any time going over those steps here.
There are other link providers out there as well, most of them
capitalizing on the goodwill that Angela created, so you might as well go with the original, and reward her for her hard work and efforts (although $5 isn t much of a reward in my opinion, but she s happy charging that amount, so who am I to complain?) But just posting those links isn t enough you need to start getting those links indexed, meaning you need to link to the link in order to get your share of the link juice provided by all of those PR 5-6-7-8 sites.
I have a way to do that which has worked like a charm for me so far, and as long as you don t abuse it, it will work for you as well. What you want to do is get your recently posted links crawled by the Google spider, and to do that, you need to get a second link posted to a site where the Google spider more or less lives 24/7/365. And where is that, you ask?
Craigslist. I have had more Craigslist classified ads show up in the first couple of pages of the Google search results for crap I ve sold online than any other source of ads. I really do believe the spiders live there full-time. The secret is to get your ad posted in an area where you are not likely to get kicked off by users of craigslist for spamming the site. There are a couple of ways to do this. First, pick any city in America that has a Craigslist page and post under Rants and Raves. The sheer amount of gibberish and b.s. that gets posted in this section is unbelievable.
Truthfully, I fear for our country after reading just a handful of posts in this section. I m not going to go into detail; you ll have to see for yourself. But because of the chaotic nature of this section, you can post just about anything you want and it will remain on Craigslist for days, allowing the Google spider plenty of time to crawl your links and get them indexed. The other option with Craigslist is to leave the U.S. and find a board that is not in use much in a foreign country. I m not going to name one here, simply because if I do, 100 people will start using the same board for the same purpose and put all of us in jeopardy with Craig. Keep this on the downlow, use it only when necessary, and we ll all be fine.
Now, as to the actual posting of the links, what you want to do is get the Google spider to crawl your Forum profile and index the links you included in that profile (which is where you get the link juice to flow from the forum to your site). The following is simply an example. You should not copy my titles or my body copy word for word.
Be creative. Hell, spew gibberish for all I care. All you really want is the spider to crawl your link. But if you run the same ad, word for word, more than twice in 3 days, Craigslist will delete the ad (or refuse to accept it) and ultimately shut down your account. So put up something different every time and you will be fine. I created a post in a Rant and Rave section titled My Second Favorite Forum and in the body wrote I love Craigs R&R Forum the most, but my second favorite forum is and at this point I insert some html as follows:
<a href=http://www.forumsitename.com/members/profilename .html>ForumName</a> (where I have www.forumsitename.com… )
I type in the actual web address of the forum profile I have set up that contains the link from Angela, and where I have Forum Name I type in the actual name of the forum. Google will now crawl the link I have posted on Craigslist, see the links I have included in my profile, and index those links using the Anchor Text I used when I set the link up in the first place.
This step only takes a minute or two to complete, and after you get the hang of using Craigslist, you can knock out all the links to your forum profiles in about an hour. The reality is that a single PR6 or PR7 link will almost be enough on its own to get your client s site to Page One for the local search results. Setting up a dozen or more should in almost every case get you cemented into one of the Top 5 slots on Page One. Since the overwhelming majority of local businesses do absolutely zero link building to support their sites, any effort you put forth on behalf of your clients will usually reap huge benefits.
Now before you run off and start slamming up 30 links a day for each client, let me advise you on one theory that exists about Google and high PR links. The theory basically says that if a site gets a sudden rush of high PR links, without some obvious justification (like a news site that breaks a huge story on a popular topic, such as Matt Drudge did back in the day when he broke the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky story) Google can and will ignore those links, rendering your efforts worthless.
I personally don t subscribe to that theory, but plenty of very smart marketers believe it carries some truth with it. So if you happen to be one of them, break up your linking efforts on behalf of one client over the course of a month. Do 5 links today, 2 tomorrow, skip the third day, do 9 the next, and so forth, giving your efforts the appearance of being random (or organic aka the current buzzword of the day). Just remember to get some links set up to your links (discussed above) so that they are indexed quickly and you start seeing some immediate benefits. One last thing I need to mention about Google and your high PR links.
As soon as Google gets even one of them indexed, there is an excellent chance you re going to see your client s website vault onto Page One somewhere. This isn t a guarantee, but I ve seen it happen often enough that I feel comfortable mentioning it here. Sadly, that move is most likely only temporary. Sometimes the same day, and sometimes several days later the site will drop off of Page One, and possibly even deeper into the search results than it was when you started (instead of being on Page Three, you could see it end up on Page Five, or possibly not find it at all). DON T PANIC!!!!!!
The technical term for this is the Google Dance and it happens pretty much every time a site is re-evaluated by Google for a particular search term. I can t explain why this happens, and frankly I don t want to guess. I just want you (and your client) to be aware this will most likely happen to them, so no one gets angry or depressed.
Getting onto Page One and staying there is usually a process that takes a couple of weeks at least, and the Google Dance is part of that process. Just keep adding a few links every couple of days, and keep monitoring your client s site for the chosen Google Search Term. Once the site reappears, it should be on Page One or Page Two, and every couple of days you ll see that it moves up a couple of slots.
Once you see it is back on Page One, start counting. Also, send your client an email letting them know that Page One has been achieved and (2) they need to start tracking the source of any new business, to see how much that new Page One placement is worth to their business.
As I noted earlier, if you were smart in picking a business that has a high dollar average for each new client AND a significant amount of search traffic each month for the chosen key words, there is a pretty good chance that your work will have paid for itself by the time your invoice comes due for the client. Now it s time to move on to the next step.