TRAFFIC & BLOGGING TIPS
Backlinks are one of the most important parts of the search engine optimization. They increase a website value for the search engines and also bring traffic.
SEO and backlinks
Most of the search engines determine site value from group of parameters in order to get the most relevant results for the search queries. The number and the quality of the backlinks to a website are some of these parameters.
It is natural to consider that if more people link to one site than it has something useful. Also if websites with high authority link to other website – it must be trustful and important. Backlinks from websites in the same topic also bring points in ranking for that niche.
Backlinks and traffic
People follow the link and visit a website so backlinks bring traffic. Backlinks from popular blogs or websites like digg can increase website traffic a lot.
How to get backlinks
It is easy. Backlinks can be obtained through forums, blog comments, link exchange, social bookmarking sites or just by asking friends.
Offering something cheap or free of charge can make others to link to a website.
More traffic with Google Friend Connect
Social networks become more and more part of an everyday life. People are making valuable friends in networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn. Social networks communities also are great way for advertising a site. It is natural to share your favorite websites with your best friends.
Google are launching new service that will allows people to be more social. Here is an announcement titled Becoming Social. If it is not clear enough you can visit Google Code Blog post about Friend Connect.
Getting traffic from images
Images are important part of many websites. If you have a blog with fun cat photos or a gamers website with screenshots, you can attract more users with your images.
So how to optimize a website for image search engines?
* Image name
Use describing names for your images. Name like a453kjh4.jpg won't help you get any traffic. Web crawlers are not people and they can't understand what is on the image but you can help them with precise names. Use short describing names like cat.jpg or clouds.gif.
* Alt text
Don't ever forget to add describing and precise alt text. This is the other important part for getting targeted traffic from image searches.
* Page title
Page titles are something important for any kind of search engine optimization. You must have precise, short and describing titles for your pages and images with similar content.
* Paragraph titles
Paragraph titles are very similar to page titles. One page can contain multiple topics and any topic must have its own describing title.
Optimizing for image searches is not so complex part of a SEO campaign. Done together with standard SEO optimization it can bring a lot of well targeted traffic.
Blog planning – how to start a high-traffic, high-paying blog?
After reading about a SEO experiment in DP, I gave a serious thought about what is the best strategy to start a blog. What is the best planning? How to attract more visitors? How to get maximum revenue? How to make people remember you?
I am not exactly a SEO expert, it is more likely that I am a SEO enthusiast. I am not interested in making money from SEO, my money source is programming. But for the past two years I do (and experiment on) search engine optimization for some sites. It is not a complete service and only small part of them are mine. I have some sites in high competition niches and some in low ones. And I make tests on different types of blog/website monetizing.
So what I have learned till now. The basic is – you have no guarantee in anything related to search engines. Two websites with no duplicate content but identical in niche/ marketing/ optimizing will have very different performance. This is not a rule of course but it happens most of the time. And all of this is just my opinion and analysis, I don't pretend to be fully right in anything.
I’ll make a simple plan for starting a blog, according to what I have learned till now. I choose a blog, not a website because it is a little more complicated for a website.
This is the research part. If you haven't selected a niche for your blog - now is the time to do so. You must select a niche where you can provide quality content. If you are not a pro in writing consider hiring a professional writer. Make a deep research on your target niche. Analyze your competitors, niche forums, social sites, trends, keywords, etc.
Spending a little more time on this first part will help you to solve many problems of the future.
2. Actions - any of this step may be not appropriate for your niche, make the final decision what to do in a clear mind
* Make minimum 20 posts before doing anything else with your blog. Maybe this advice is not suitable only for political/ civil/ spicy blogs.
* Make gradual link building campaign – too fast link building may put you in a sandbox
* Make minimum 3-4 posts per week for the first 3 months
* Active membership to some related forums and communities – minimum 3-4 quality posts per forum per week
* Make 30 or more directory submissions per week – prefer high rank directories
Define your goals depending on the niche popularity in a monthly rate:
* Unique visitors expectations
Keep in mind that in a high competition niche your blog will need more time and efforts to become popular.
I usually start to monetize my blogs after 3 months starting period. It is better to set goals according to the niche for the expecting revenue. Don’t aim too high because one disappointment at the beginning may be critical.
Selecting the type of revenue program is also a very complex task. I’ll live it for another post.
SEO BlackHat Method
Google makes it clear that it disapproves of certain SEO tactics, such as hiding keywords with invisible text, or showing one page to Google's spider and another to actual human visitors.Methods that conform to what the search engines like are called White Hat SEO, and disapproved methods are called Black Hat SEO. There is a lot of controversy about whether Black Hat SEO is really "bad" in the ethical sense. White Hatters say that Black Hatters are unfairly trying to manipulate the SERPs. Black Hatters counter, "What constitutes 'fair'? Isn't any change you make to your page for SEO purposes an attempt to influence rankings? Why is one method less pure than another when we're all just trying to get our pages to rank higher? Further, if an engine is ranking a bunch of irrelevant sites above mine, what's so wrong about using any method at my disposal to get my relevant site ranked above them? Doing so doesn't benefit just me, it benefits the searchers because it gives them what they're searching for. And it also benefits the engine, because searchers will think better of the engine for giving them more relevant results than it would have otherwise."
Adding to the controversy about Black Hat SEO is the fact Google does allow a certain select few sites to operate contrary to its own stated policies. Danny Sullivan complains that Google's cloaking policy is inconsistent (more on cloaking below), and that the policy wording should be updated. He further notes that the reason Google allows some cloaking is that it improves searching rather than hinders it, and that it's therefore inappropriate to think of cloaking as synonymous with "bad".
Whether you think Black Hat SEO is bad or not you should avoid it anway, because it can get you banned from the search engines, or at least reduce your ranking. Google has been known to remove sites it felt weren't playing fair. Granted, this isn't likely, but why take that risk? Also, much Black Hat SEO involves some fairly technical work. If this article is your introduction to SEO, you likely don't have the skills to be a successful Black Hatter anyway -- at least one who doesn't get caught.
Reddit and StumbleUpon
The vision in my mind of a typical 'Redditor' is one who hits a link, arrives at your site, glances at the content, goes back to Reddit, repeat for another link at a pace and schedule you could set your watch to. When talking about frequency, we do get significantly more traffic from Reddit than Digg on a day to day basis. But one front page story on Digg will in just a few hours easily surpass 2 weeks worth of Reddit traffic, to which our battered server can testify.
StumbleUpon was one of those sites I deliberately avoided early on. Submitting our own articles on StumbleUpon has returned some good results, but our submissions pale in comparison to one getting picked up by a high profile user. When this happens, we easily get more traffic spread out over a week than we get from Digg. As an example, one particular article had 115,000 visitors from Digg over about 6 hours, but the same article which got picked up on StumbleUpon over 2 weeks later saw 55,000 visitors spread out over a week.
Stumblers love to comment, and they love to let you know where they came from: "I stumbled in!" is a typical start to a comment. And they love to look around. They are a unique breed of web surfer who are on a mission to find anything and everything interesting to share with others. Not only that, Stumblers keep coming back and many subscribe to our newsletter and RSS feeds. In fact while composing this article we got 2 more newsletter subscribers who say they came in from StumbleUpon.