MyYahoo Jumps On The NoFollow Bandwagon

I use my.yahoo as my homepage and I noticed over the weekend that they had implemented the nofollow attribute to all of the links. I use Firefox with the Search Status extension that will automatically highlight all nofollowed links on a page in pink; so when I logged in on Saturday my yahoo homepage looked like a big bucket of strawberry ice cream.

It was said early on when nofollow came out that although Yahoo supposedly wouldn’t pass any link popularity through nofollow’d links; they would still follow the links. Has this changed? As far as I could tell (although I never tested it), MyYahoo wasn’t passing any juice so I don’t really get why they’d do this. Maybe they were. (Damn! I should’ve taken better advantage of it if that’s the case.)

I guess I really don’t care about this one way or the other, but unless I want to turn off my SEO add-on, I now hate my homepage. Maybe it’s time for a new one…

*****UPDATE****** 8/28/08

Yahoo must’ve heard about my threats because they have removed the nofollow attribute from MyYahoo. I feel so loved.

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Great Tips for Link Building

Obviously LinkWorth is here to make your link building step much easier, however, it should never stop here. In a perfect world you can hire your own staff and have them do all of the leg work for your company and find great links for your site.

I’ve been wanting to make a very educational post on this topic but after doing some digging around, I found one of the more well thought out and informative posts that says it all. For those that aren’t familiar with SEOmoz, Rand is one of the more well known public figures of SEO and often speaks at the search related trade shows. He published his presentation from a recent show and it says everything I would have said and more. When you have a little time, read his “Give It Up” presentation.

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Hypothetical – How Lonely Is Lonely?

Thanks to Christine for this hypothetical idea!

Let’s say you are so tired of being lonely, you just want to find “someone” to be able to talk to about things, basically a friend and a mate. The problem is, you don’t have the time to spend looking for that special person and what time you do have, all the wrong places bring all the wrong faces.

How about a hypothetical to help? 🙂

You are at a point in your life where you are ready to settle down and find a life partner. You have tried dating and keep meeting people that are nothing but a waste of time. While at a bar drowning your sorrows away, you meet a guy that says he has the solution. A 100% legal solution to cure your loneliness.

  • 1st Choice – You purchase a life-like doll that feels like a human, can perform some human movements and functions, like say comforting things when you get home from a long day of work. He or She also has some bed etiquette where depending on how you lay down in bed, it can snuggle up to you.
  • 2nd Choice – You purchase a ‘companion computer’ that is programmed to display your perfect mate. He or She; looks hot and loves to lay in bed with you when you sleep. The only problem is this is only an image, nothing physical. The program makes the image roll around and spoon with you, but that is the extent of it.

So it comes down to just ‘how lonely you really are’!

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New WordPress Plugin – Dofollow Comments

Being a company that ‘loves links’, I thought having the nofollow tag on our comments just didn’t make much sense. I removed the nofollow some time ago and found people kept trying to abuse it, so I took that plugin out.

Thanks to Megadawg for referring me to Lucias Linky Love dofollow plugin. It basically allows you to apply a minimum post count on our readers who comment. Once you hit that number, the nofollow attribute is removed and we’re happy to pass along some link love to our contributors. In other words, it weeds out the good posters from the fake posters.

We’ll be watching and making any necessary tweaks. If you have any suggestions or notice something weird, give us a reply here.

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Who Says Link Building Does Not Work Anymore

We can all agree that the past year of link building, well SEO in general, has been quite the hot topic. Damn near ‘everyone’ participated in link building in some form or fashion. If you read someone that says they have never participated in link building, you can bet most of your money that they’re not telling you the whole truth. It was just part of the landscape and you had to do it to compete. A good analogy is like trying to compete in a marathon but not working out, you can still participate but you probably won’t finish.

Text Linking Is Still AliveAll this rambling leads me to my point. Since the ‘so called’ hammer was thrown down, a lot of people have either turned their heads towards link building or have continued on as under the table as possible. Those that have turned their heads have found it impossible to compete, once again. Why? It’s because linking is still alive and well. The truth of the matter is it will always be alive and well unless the engines change the way they rank websites, a point that I’ve said over and over. Sure, they can try and slap people’s wrists, but if you knock 10 down, there’s 10 more waiting to take their place.

A great example of how well the text linking business still works, I bring to you exhibit A. If you look at the page source, you’ll find that it is nothing more than a frameset page with absolutely zero content. Only a title and meta description. It is currently ranked #1 for the term “Text Link Ads“, which is pretty competitive. I first thought our pals over at TLA were back on track but then realized it was just an affiliate page. Either way, I was thrilled to see what I was looking at. That gives even more proof that you can rank a page with nothing but a pure linking campaign. All you have to do is look at the back links listed and you’ll find their text links. It’s a beautiful thing.

If you have become a non-believer, what more proof do you need that we can help!

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Should SEO Agencies Advertise With AdWords

When you come across a SEO agency, their main motto is, “We’ll get you listed naturally in the search engine results.” The goal is to eliminate the need for PPC because you’ll be listed in the natural results. That is even the motto in our niche market. The idea is you get search engines to read your site, then your site will be listed well for your target keywords. Plain and simple, right?

If that is the case, wouldn’t it make sense that the SEO company you find ranks well for their own keywords and do not have to attract people by using AdWords? Should it make more of an impact to the customer if that company doesn’t spend a dime on AdWords and only gets their customers by way of natural search traffic or through non-search related advertising?

I think it is quite humorous when I see SEO or SEM companies that don’t rank well for a single keyword in their own industry, but they tell potential customers that they can do it for them. You could definitely point the finger towards the fact customers aren’t hip enough to do the research on SEO companies before they spend a dime with them, however, I know of situations first hand where people in our industry put certain companies in a high regard even though they are nowhere to be found when it comes to natural search.

I’m definitely not here to point anyone out, this post is more about asking the question regarding this subject. I’ve always wondered how a customer feels when searching for this type of service. I know I’ve read new SEO sites that talk a big game, yet they’re nowhere to be found on simple keywords related to them, which always makes me think they’re a bit full of it and I’ve always wondered how the actual customer feels about it. With that being said, some of the smartest cats out there could not rank for the easiest of words, but it doesn’t mean they wouldn’t get amazing results for their customers.

If you have a second, give me your thoughts. I’d like to hear what everyone else thinks.

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Link Building – One of the Best ROI Tactics of 2007 – Study Shows

Reading studies about online advertising is something I always enjoy to dig in to. It really gives you an insight of how companies are spending their money and what they feel is the best bang for their buck. Running an online business and actually being in the marketing industry makes it even more beneficial to understand our target market.

Today I read MarketingSherpa’s Study on the Best & Worst Online Tactics & Budget Plans. I was very happy to see how well the SEO market is doing with the highest Search ROI percentage (57%), trumping paid search ads by almost 25%! No wonder Google is trying to take the feet out from under SEO companies.

What do I mean by that last comment? There is no secret that a main staple of any SEO campaign is link building. Or maybe it is a secret to some, but an SEO firm can optimize the hell out of your site but it’s really nothing without a solid linking campaign. (INSERT LINKWORTH) There is a reason so many agencies use LinkWorth as part of their process; it’s effective and it simplifies their jobs. How much of what we do actually works? According to this study, quite a bit. Here’s a graph showing the emergence of text link ads into the marketplace:

Marketing Survey

What a pleasant sight to see. We had the largest increase from ’06-’07 and we’re in the top 3 of outperforming tactics. What’s even more impressive is the fact link building campaigns are tough to work into conversion systems. I think we do a great job of educating our customers in how they’ll see the benefit, but if you come across someone that lives and dies by the analytics conversion system, it might be a tough sell.

One more thing about this study that interested me was the expectations of emerging tactics. See the image below:

Marketing Study

It appears viral video is an area where marketers are looking to increase their budgets. They list Youtube.com, but there are loads of sites videos can be uploaded to. One example of the viral video tactic is the girl Kina Grannis who entered a contest with Doritos to win a music contract with Interscope Records. She used the social network Digg.com and wrote a song “Gotta Digg” for that community. Long story short, it was a hit and so was she, along with getting a contract with Interscope.

Have an agency and interested in using LinkWorth? Call 866.LNK.WRTH and we’ll get you started. Know what you’re doing and ready to go? Or have your own site to promote and want to do it on your own? Then go signup and create your account. You can be on the ground running in just a few minutes.

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New Spider In Action

Earlier today we put our new ad checking spider into production. The much needed upgrade is using up to date technologies along with verifying code and text of the ad. What this means is, if you publish an ad using the wrong anchor text or the wrong code, the ad is not going to be validated until it is published correctly.

Another advantage to our new spider is the advanced level of communication. Rather than just telling you the ad is not found, we’ll be communicating the reason why our spider was unable to validate the ad. We do expect a period of a few weeks to get the communication feature completely finished.

We do encourage you to let us know if you notice any unusual activity or messages being sent. What I mean by this is if we’re sending incorrect information or something repetitive, or just out of the ordinary, then contact support. This doesn’t relate to messages about ads not being found. If you are receiving an ad not found message, we request that you hold off contacting us until you have received more than one consecutive messages regarding the same ad.

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A Friendly 2007 Farewell and a 2008 Outlook

Here we are, the office has skipped out a little early to prepare for their big night to welcome in the New Year, Matt and I are still working and 2007 is about to be gone in the blink of an eye. Something tells me that in my mind, I’ll be making another post just like this in what will seem like a couple months, asking, “what happened to 2008?”

Overall, 2007 was a great year for LinkWorth. Sure there were bumps in the road here and there, but what doesn’t kill you can only make you stronger. Luckily the business of online marketing is going nowhere, so that means we’ll continue to morph into a better marketplace for our advertisers and for our partners. We definitely want to thank “ALL” of our customers that continue to make LinkWorth one of the biggest and best ad networks in our industry.

To keep this interesting and not so sappy, because that is so not my style, I wanted to send a few 2007 farewell’s in bullet style:

  • Farewell to: All of the conferences we attended: SES, SMX, Pubcon and Affiliate Summit. . .
  • Farewell to: All of the cities that put up with us: Seattle, San Jose, Vegas, New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, D.C. . .
  • Farewell to: American Airlines and their HORRIBLE delays, the special emergency landing, decent 1st class and pitiful coach seats. . .
  • Farewell to: Our departed staff: the good, the bad and the greedy. . .
  • Farewell to: The almost $2mm in payouts our partners earned!!. . .
  • A special thanks to: All of our wonderful advertisers who helped LinkWorth continue on. . .
  • Farewell to: Greg “The Hammer” Williams, aka Motorcycle Greggo, aka Sweet Greggo, aka Robot Greggo, aka Common Man. . .
  • Farewell to: The horrible scoring system known as PageRank. . .

As we send 2007 out the door, let us welcome 2008 in along with a few bullets for what to expect here at LinkWorth:

  • 08 Outlook: More blogging with tips, tricks and secrets to making LinkWorth work even better for you. . .
  • 08 Outlook: Create new ways for partners to gain more exposure to Advertisers. . .
  • 08 Outlook: Improve our daily spider check to cut down on “not found” messages (already in progress). . .
  • 08 Outlook: Introduce new advertising products with a focus on vintage methods. . .
  • 08 Outlook: New contests with new prizes. . .
  • 08 Outlook: The purchase of Google and Yahoo with my next few saved paychecks. . .
  • 08 Outlook: Growing the LinkWorth staff with new smart and exciting people. . .
  • 08 Outlook: Spread the LinkWorth brand to new markets attracting new advertisers. . .
  • 08 Outlook: Making 2008 better than 2007 and having a great time doing it. . .

Obviously, both lists can have loads more bullets, but this is what came to me before I walk out the door for the evening. 2007 was such a great and big year for our customers and our company, anything short of what we’ve already experienced isn’t really an option.

Directly from the LinkWorth crew, we wish everyone a very safe and happy new year!

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More Hypocrisy By Google – Nofollow?

A couple of weeks ago, I blogged about Google selling links for a cheap annual price of $1,995. It was a story that I read some time ago but could not find the real owner, until today when Rustybrick sphunn what I had just sphunn and provided a link to the original story. I appreciate someone finally telling me who I could credit because I don’t like duplicating stories without giving kudos.

As I’m reading the comments on sphinn today, I see where people are saying the backlinks are not showing up. I would suggest they are not looking very hard. I researched several when I was blogging a couple of weeks ago and found the google backlinks on several of the domains. This made me want to do even more research today and I happened across even more google links that are essentially links that were bought. Oddly enough, the nofollow tag is absent on all of these. Something Google is forcing everyone to do if it is paid for in some fashion.

Now the original link farm style page was a hit and miss for finding google on their backlinks. Lucky for me, I stumbled on a gold mine of hard evidence they are nothing but hypocrites over at Google. Let me introduce the enterprise superstars!

http://www.google.com/enterprise/superstars/index.html

These people are Google customers who have paid for the Google Mini and because they paid, were recognized and highlighted. The first page is a list of the “Current Winners”. Each person from the respective company is highlighted and given a Pay for Post style write up on a Google blog. (example)

Now let us move on to the real gold, the success stories page. If there were doubts about passing juice before, this page should seal the deal with proof.

I did the daunting task of checking all 187 links on this page (umm..link farm?) and the results paint the picture:

  • 171 of the domains have google.com appearing in their google backlinks.
  • 10 of the domains do not have google.com in their google backlinks.
  • 5 of the domains have no cache and/or no website present.
  • 1 of the domains has a typo and the link does not work.

In summary, if you want a good solid backlink or even a backlink and a blog review on the google blog, then pay for the google mini and become one of their superstars.

I have put the entire list with results in this PDF called Google Link Selling if anyone wishes to check my work.

Their new motto should be, “Do As I Say, Not As I Do!”

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