1. Your Anchor Text Is Too Focused
Okay so you want to rank for ‘red widgets’. The primitive thing to do would be to build 100 links to your target page for ‘red widgets’. It kinda worked in the past, there were such things as tripping an anchor text filter, but things were a bit more lenient. That black and white animal came along (we’ve banned panda and penguin from Fat Joe HQ) and changed the game a little bit. If you’ve been overly focused on a particular keyword you may have noticed your site slip in the rankings when the updates came along.
This is why now at Fat Joe we recommend you really broaden the scope of your anchor text and ‘naturalise’ it using ‘partial match’ and include words like ‘click here’ and your site URL. Partial Match means including your anchor text, only in a longer string of text.
Example: ‘Click here to see the website that sells the red widgets for dirt cheap‘
Takeaway: Use more variations of anchor text to avoid penalties.
2. Your Content Is Sh*t
Overly spun content to get your uniqueness up. PLR Content. I’m not sure if Google can define the difference between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ content, but when it starts making no sense, surely there’s an algorithm that detects this. On this front Fat Joe recommends using only exceptionally talented content writers, that can really write. If you’re going to spin, make sure the spinner understand the content language perfectly, and really understands the synonyms and nuances involved in your language.
Secondly if your content makes no sense, the site owners (whom own the properties you wish to place your sh*t content on) will take your articles/links down pretty sharpish.
Takeaway: Pay the extra to get it written by a native writer who can really write.
3. Your Articles Are Too Promotional
Just a short one, but if you’re writing about how good your product/website/service is in an article or around your link, your making an advert. Property owners will not take well to adverts and will take them down quickly. Some people wonder why Web 2.0 properties keep taking down links… it’s obvious. 99.9% of ours stick, and for a very long time, years in fact.
The key is to make your article educational. Make it add value to the user and the property your hosting your article on.
Takeaway: Don’t promote your own business in your articles
4. Your Links Aren’t On Topic
We kinda have a hunch that, if your link is on an unrelated page stuck in some unrelated content, it will be worth less than a page that is related in some way to your industry. We have seen links stuck on link pages of sites completely unrelated to the target site, and we have even seen links in the middle of unrelated content on article sites. If these are the type of links people are building, we have it easy!
Takeaway: Make sure the articles, pages or sites are on topic to your target site.
5. Your Link Is Obviously A Link
It is sooooooooo obvious when a page or article is written and published on a property for the purpose of link value. Google and other search engines hate us building links for links sake. Even more so, the Property owners do aswell. Stop making your links look like links.
How to do this? First of all make your article or mini site look like it was created by a third party (back to point 3 – non promotional). Even better, make it look like it was done by a hobbyist. Now instead of adding links just to YOUR site, add links to other related sites too.
WHAT? Build Links To MY COMPETITORS??
Of course not silly, find a related non competing page on the web, one or two, and link to them, naturally. Wikipedia is always a good one to link to.
So now, instead of an obvious link page, your link becomes nested in a resource. A resource that will stand the test of time, because it is educational, impartial, and adds value to the web!
For a test, ask a fellow SEO to take a look at your link page. If they can guess WHICH TARGET SITE you have built the page for, then you’re not being impartial enough
Takeaway: Link to other related (but non competing sites) to be impartial.
6. Your Links Aren’t Pretty Enough
We’ve seen links built that are so unformatted it looks as if they couldn’t have got it any uglier if they tried. Obviously made with SENUKE or some other automated software. Even worse, if you’re not including images or videos, your links aren’t pretty, and are kinda spammy.
We’re not saying Google’s only going to value your article and link if you have proper paragraphs and multimedia, but the property owner may frown upon your property and take it down if it looks spammy. Google and other search engines may reward the fact that your page has multimedia, it’s all about this idea of making your link articles become useful resources.
Takeaway: Manually build your pages and articles, and make sure you format them. Add sprinkles of multimedia for effect.
7. You’re Spamming Your Links
Ironic isn’t it. Years ago we spammed our sites with links to rank, and now the new thing going around the forums is… SPAM your links with 30,000 drip fed forum profiles or something stupid. Now we are big believers in getting our links indexed, giving Google a nudge, but we are not fans of spamming our hubs. The general word on the street is that, if we host our articles on big super sites such as Squidoo and Ezine Articles, then they’ll be able to take the hit of a big blast of spam… well if certain pages are getting that much spam, if I was a search engine I would penalise that page, or neutralise the spam (not reward the page).
Takeaway: We believe (to be future proof) in feeding just a few links into our web 2.0 properties, and not over doing it.