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How to Improve Backlinking Variety in Light of the Latest Google Updates

Google Panda Updates

Today I want to talk about changes many of us need to make to our link building strategy, as a result of the latest Google updates.

I’m not referring to the de-indexing of BMR (BuildMyRank.com) and other blog networks. A lot has been said about that, and I might blog about it later.

In this post I want to talk about how you need to avoid over-optimization with your link-building. This concept is very important to understand if you want your sites to rank well.

I’ll explain.

Google is working harder and harder to detect whether your link profile looks natural.

Why is Google doing that?

Because they want to rank sites that are good quality sites, and therefore get links naturally.

That is why Google became so popular in the first place. Because their search results are relevant and good (or at least better than their competition).

And they want to continue that. In fact, they want to improve it.

So when you search for something, they want you to see high-quality listings in the top results.

In order to detect high-quality sites, they are now looking closer at backlinking patterns. If a site has a good linking pattern (I’ll explain what that means in a minute), it means that people like it and want to link to it. In other words, it’s a high quality site.

It wasn’t always this way.

In the past, you could stuff a webpage with multiple instances of a specific keyword, then get a lot of links to it using that keyword, and you were set. As long as the competition wasn’t too high, you’d be able to rank for it. A lot of spammy sites were doing that.

However, things have changed and this is no longer the case. Things have been different for quite a while.

For a while people who practice SEO have seen that you can’t do that anymore. You have to be careful not to stuff your site with keywords, and not to use the same anchor text for our backlinks 100% of the time.

And now, after the latest Google updates, we need to work harder to make sure our backlinks are indeed varied.

And that’s what I want to talk about today.

So…

To get straight to the point, there are 3 things you need to do from now on, if you are not doing them already:

#1: Vary your anchor text

For those who don’t know what anchor text means, here’s a quick explanation:

If I have the following link:

Wikipedia Online

then the text – in this case Wikipedia Online – is called the anchor text, and the place it takes me – in this case http://wikipedia.org – is called the url.

So the anchor text is the text that you see when you view a link.

And when you get backlinks to your site, you need to vary that anchor text.

Until now, you could use your keyword as your anchor text 60%, 70% or 80% of the time (depending on who you asked). Today you want it to be much lower.

And you want the variety to be much wider.

So if my keyword is canon camera a590, I’ll want to use that exact keyword a portion of the time, and the rest of the time I’ll want to use:

  • Variations of the keyword, such as canon a590, a590 camera, canon camera a590 sale, buy canon camera a590
  • Other keywords I’d like to rank for (it’s always nice when you rank for more than 1 keyword per page because you get more traffic)
  • My brand or site name, such as Best Digital Cameras – if that is the name of my site
  • The url of the page I’m linking to. For example: http://bestdigitalcameras.com/canon/canon-a590
  • Generic keywords. For example, ‘click here’, ‘read more’, etc

(All the examples above are made up and do not actually exist on any of my sites)

#2: Get links to a variety of pages on your site

In the past you could just link to one page on your site (most people would link mostly or only to their home page), and that would work well. Now you need to get links to a variety of pages on your site at once.

#3: Get links from a wide variety of sources

There are a lot of ways to get links. It’s actually a topic for another post, because there’s a lot to talk about and explain. But if you search online a little, you’ll see a lot of options.

You want to make sure to get links from a variety of places.

#4 Make your sites link-worthy

As I said, Google is working harder and harder to make sure that your link profile looks natural.

So even though your goal is to make money from your sites, do make an effort to have good quality content that is useful to people. This will only help you in the long run, as Google’s algorithm gets better and better in filtering out bad sites.

Got any questions? Anything to add? Please post in the comments below.

And if you think (like me) that everyone should know about it, please like, share, and tweet it as well.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 12 comments
Beau

getting organic back seems like an impossible feat when starting out … writing good content and telling others about it seems key. I think whats hardest is ensuring that the audience is properly targeted .

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Johnney

Thanks Sara, I have be reading a lot lately about the blog networks deindexing and I began to wonder about EPF and what might or might not happen.
What you said here helps point the way for me to continue on w/some confidence so thanks again.
Johnney

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Lisa Wyle (Nursing Programs)

Thanks, Sara. This is a very important blog post. My website has recently gone down in google ranking, and I was looking for ways to get it back up.

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forex mentor course

thank you for updating us on this issue sara. What we need to do now is to vary the anchor text, link to inner pages and have the links from resources..

Got it.. cheers.. you are the best, fatimah

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Andrew

Thanks Sara for this reminder, it is all to easy to get caught up in doing the easy linking routines which are easily spotted as not being natural links, it is more work to get varied links but in the end it is worth the effort or the investment if paying to have it all done right, for you.

It is really hard to back-link to your site with ‘Click Here’ or ‘Visit Us’ LOL, but it has to be done.

Thanks again

.Andrew.

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shawn

Thanks Sara, I have been using you “Easy Paycheck Formula” for about a year now and have enjoyed some moderate success. Thanks for the back linking info, and for providing such quality and accurate advice. I always learn something of value from you…

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Vivian

Great information, as usual, Sara. Thank you for helping us stay clear of the google potholes!

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Shlomo Skinner

Hi Sara:
I just watched a replay of a webinar that you did with Matt Carter. As I was watching, I kept wondering how you would be dealing with the recent Google changes.
When I searched your name, I found this website and article.
I see that you’re working on the problem.
One question. You say that this article will not deal with the de-indexing of certain blog networks. From the webinar, it seems like blog networks are a big part of your back link strategy. Are there blog networks that are still effective and flying under Google’s radar?

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    by Sara Young

    Hi Shlomo,

    We were using BMR for part of the linking strategy (I believe in a very wide range of links, so it was just part of it).

    So for the past week I updated the course (thanks to my babysitters 🙂 ), and BMR has been replaced with something better and safer.

    IPC gets updated often to keep up with any changes that come up.

    Sara

    Reply
Kishurim

Thank you Sarah for this useful post.
i would like to emphasize the importance of where the link is coming from. Try to have as many links from pages that share your keywords in the content of the page.
Good luck all.

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Linda

Thank you Sara. It is rather easy to get hung up with the repetition of using the same anchor text for your site when trying to get backlinks. This post was very helpful. You are one of a select group of internet marketers I would recommend.

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Kimberly

Hi Sara, mean only anchor text has to be change and apply variation of key words when i submitting my own article to other article directories to get more backlinks?
Im doubt that im still can submit my same exact article on such directories or have to rewrite?

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