Links - the most important SEO strategy

Discussion in 'Digital Marketing' started by nativeCO, Jun 15, 2012.

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  1. nativeCO

    nativeCO LawnSite Member
    Messages: 30

    Hey everyone,

    I work for Native Lawns, a lawn and landscape company in Colorado. I've recently designed my website myself and in the process I have done a great deal of research on SEO (Search Engine Optimization - the process of making a website so it gets higher rankings in search engines such as google and bing)

    If you know anything about SEO, you'll know that one of the most important strategies is to get links coming into your website that come from websites with a topic related to your website. This is one of the most difficult processes, simply because it is tough to find other people willing to cooperate in this process of linking to one another's website.

    I've tried very hard for a very long time to find people willing to link to my site, and vice versa. Anyone with half a brain can realize that if you cooperate with me, we can both gain a huge advantage over our competitors.

    PLEASE contact me if you are interested in exchanging links to one another's websites. I swear, there is absolutely nothing to lose. This cannot hurt your website or company in any way. Your cooperation is greatly beneficial to BOTH OF US
  2. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,915

    Since you put it this way, I'll be blunt and tell you that you really need to find better sources for inbound/outbound linking strategies for SEO, because you are way off base in what you've presented here, and put into practice on your site. As you are currently implementing it, there absolutely is something to lose with your cross-linking strategy. In fact, you're doing it exactly the wrong way. You are falling in to an old trap of quantity over quality.

    Couple of other things to worry about before trying to pool links is that your site has almost absolutely no SEO in and of itself, and it needs a lot of work under the proverbial hood:

    - The load time is not good (2.8sec to load, 1mb page weight, and a 64% total page grade quality for a D).
    - The pictures are too large (you've forced them down to fit with code, rather than to properly optimize them).
    - The code for your home page has, to me, a record 376 validation errors.

    Why do I bring these up? Because they all play in to the various search algorithmz and linking to you, especially with "just a link" as you are currently doing, would potentially be more detrimental to my well-ranking "wherever USA" lawn company.
  3. Turf Troll

    Turf Troll LawnSite Member
    Messages: 227

  4. Dave does lawns

    Dave does lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 257

    Incoming links is good yes but not as good as you seem to think they are. Truth is search engines read your site just like we read a book. they do not see all the flashy eye appealing design that many of us spend most of our time making our sites look good. Only people who see that is us and our potential customers. First thing you need to do is open a book. What do you see? TITLE! the way the search engine read your site, you apparently do not have a title. (H1 Tag) Make your TITLE, H1 tag match exactly. then whenever possible use as many of the words in your title within the site text, as often as you can. That would be step one. don't worry about links, so much. If you do SEO properly, people will be more willing to link to your site as it benefits them too.
  5. Turboguy

    Turboguy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,972

    Well said Dave. I tend to agree with you that Links are far less important than the OP believes. I never pay much attention to links and still my sites end up with a high ranking. Other steps that you mention such as a good title and description and the use of keywords in the text often and early do far more.

    A few years ago I decided to take two of my most important websites and have a professional optimize them. They made a couple of minor changes and the main thing they did was to add a links page and links to my site. My traffic dropped off by about 25%.

    One of the last sites I did which was a couple of years ago has one link to it anywhere and I did nothing to let the search engines know it existed and within a week of having it live it came up in three of the top 6 spots for anyone searching for what I do in any of 50 cities around me. Actually it comes up in the # 2, 4 and 5 spots with # 3 being where my link is and number one being the yellow pages. It convinced me that content and meta tags are the most important thing in web site optimization not links.
  6. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,915

    One of the reasons I didn't offer any explanation of my comments was to see if the OP was actually even interested in learning what the correct approach is. Given that was his only post here in a year, well...I'll leave it at that.

    Slapping disparate links/logos on a site, especially in a footer, ala the NASCAR method of advertising, hasn't worked for SEO in many years (8 to 10?).

    Dave, everyone should follow your advice on the TITLE tag. It's amazing how many people put zero effort into it, but if you ask anyone in the field of SEO what the most neglected, albeit high-reward element there is, we'll tell you it's the page title.

    I will disagree on the inbound links, as they are the most important off-page SEO device there is. This isn't debatable, but it's all in the context. As the OP is implementing it, there is no worse way. Relevant sites, such as this, or say a link from your article you wrote for will have huge impact on your move up the SERPs. When it comes to this, there is still a misuse of the linking itself. Don't have your website name be the link. Have the link anchored to great, relevant keywords, suck as "lawn mowing" or what have you.

    As for Meta Tags, meta description is important. Meta Keywords have been useless for years. Work whatever meta keywords you would use in to your actual content. They can be a guide, of sorts, but they're a wheel-spinner when actually using the effort to put them in your header. The only times I use them are to easily see what my (your) competitors are targeting so that I can make my own strategic adjustments.

    As TurboGuy said, focus on good content and solid, relevant inbound links, and you're going to beat your competitor. It's not rocket science, although at times, it's close to

  7. Dave does lawns

    Dave does lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 257

    Link are good but not if the engines struggle to determine what the site is about. That's why I recommend fixing onsite seo before you worry about links.
  8. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,915

    100% agree. "This isn't debatable, but it's all in the context." By context, I'm referring to the inbound link's source material as it relates to the target.

    Definitely agree on getting your own proverbial house in order before going to outside sources. Too often, people are concerned with amassing links, no matter the source ("For $50 I'll get you fivetyhundred links!" lol), when their own site is missing an effective seo plan.
  9. Dave does lawns

    Dave does lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 257

    Sounds like you get the same out of country phone calls I get on a weekly basis.

    Besides I have found in my experience that by me linking to other sites weighed just as heavily then those linking to me.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
  10. Turf Troll

    Turf Troll LawnSite Member
    Messages: 227

    The path of least resistance is just to ask.

    Stating that any action increased/bettered a sites keyword search engine ranking is only relevant if the competition for the keyword is known isn't it.
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