Off-Site Search Engine Optimization - How Not to Do It

Offsite SEO - How not to do it
Offsite SEO - How not to do it


The one thing that makes a website, no matter what its contents, is its ability to provide information. And the one unique way of gauging how popular a website is by its popularity. And how do search engines find the most popular, hence important, web site? They analyze the data and feedback that is provided by other websites. The skill of making sure that a web site’s popularity is high is called off-site search engine optimization (SEO), and although not an exact science it is a very powerful weapon in a site administrator’s arsenal.

The Basic Link

The one way of sending people from site to another is by embedding links. A link is a shortcut address that directs readers to another page, whether or not on the same website. Search engines check all the links on a web site and analyze them. The more links a site has on other pages, the higher it will rank.

Keep it Clean

When search engines scour the net for links, they do not take in all the data as is. And also, they do not take in the data from any website: the one taboo that needs to be noted early on when planning and off-site SEO strategy is that it is better to have one link on a good site than many on bad ones. And this is doubly important when thinking of posting links on link farms (sites that exist only for posting links).

Other tricks that need to be avoided: 1

Too Much, Too Soon

One sure ranking killer is trying to do it all too soon. There are businesses that promise to submit web links to hundreds of sites and at the same time promising almost instant returns. Once search engines have analyzed the unnatural link profile and see the growth of the links from 0, to say, 500 in a couple of days they will get suspicious and the web site will get penalized.

Earn It

One thing search engines check for is whether or not the web site has actually earned the links that point towards it. For example, web site owners usually post articles and blog posts on other writing sites that have links pointing back to the site, which is perfectly legal. The problem arises when it is overdone: a pet shop site having a 400-word article with 50 links using words ‘cats’, ‘dog’, fish’ etc. is an obvious overkill too sour for the search engines palettes. Typically, a link shouldn’t have a density of more than 2-5% and should use the web site’s own name (The Pet Shop) or keywords (…to find the best pets…) as the anchor texts for the links.

Hard Work

The only way up, when it comes to page ranking, is through hard work2. The hard work should be spent in looking for good sites with a good reputation. Lazily submitting links to every site that accepts links only drags down the ranking, if it doesn’t lead to total banning.

1 – SEO MOZ: http://www.seomoz.org/blog/whiteboard-friday-offsite-overoptimization

2 – Blogging Fingers: http://bloggingfingers.com/blogging-tips/offsite-seo-strategies/


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