Yes. And here is why you should not discount no follow links.
Rand Fishkin, Founder of SEOmoz just did a great blog on early ranking factors data after his companies April Linkscape update.
One of his interesting points during the session was that many SEO’s are using more no follow links, and that they are seeing better value in them.
I have agreed with that for years. And here is why. A link profile that has a nice mix of Follow and no Follow is more natural. Google likes natural.
Not only that, but as Rand made this point in the presentation, alot of really trusted sites and high value sites use no follow. Face book, twitter, wordpress… the list goes on and on. I don’t think google really pays as much attention to the no follow tag as many people think they do. Why would they. Works to their advantage if we think they do, as they then have a metric that is pretty easy to identify sites building an unnatural linking profile using an unnatural amount or percentage of follow links.
So, I go back to were I always seem to go with Links. Add links that you would add without considering how they will effect your site rankings, and you will end up in good shape. SEO is not search engine manipulation. It is solid marketing and promotion for your web site.
It’s really the same thing. In our sales coaching, one of the main topics is how to sell more through business relationships.
Local SEO is just an extension of that principle. Your site needs to “build good relationships” with other local and national sites to attract attention.
In business you want to first, build great relationships with your current customers, and then build strategic relationships with other companies that can promote your service, and in turn you can promote theirs.
The bottom line on building better positive relationships in business is finding ways to support your customers and network in new and valuable ways.
Ask not what they can do for you, but ask what you can do for them.
A good step would be offering to write a letter of reference for their services, and allowing them to post it on their web site. Testimonials are an important part of building trust, and they should jump at the offer. It’s good for their site and company and if you add your business information to the testimonial include your web site, and that’s a plus for your SEO.
I truly believe that the way you advance your business is by helping others advance theirs. And just like with good local SEO, make sure you chose the companies you promote carefully, as you will be judged to an extent by their reputation.
When we explain SEO, or search engine optimization, to business owners, we explain it in this analogy.
SEO is like a popularity contest back in high school. Every one wants to be liked by Google. So the first thing is Google has to like your looks. In this case, that’s your site. Google like’s sites with good content, easy navigation, and a site that is clear what it’s about.
The second thing Google wants to know is who likes you ( who you hang out with). In this case what other sites like you, and how does Google feel about those sites. If they are popular, your site is going to pick up some popularity points in this contest. A site’s trust is also very important, is Google confident that the site that mentions your site is on the “good” list.
Google also wants you to be popular with sites that are related to you. No one likes a wishy washy site. Are the sites that like you, related to what you are?
And Google knows who likes you (your site) by what other sites link back to you, or give you a mention.
I recently had an email from a client asking about his Google site rankings moving a little bit over the last few days. I thought the answer might be of interest to anyone asking that same question. So here is my response. The things that impact your organic listings are:
Your site content
Your Back links
Other sites content
Other sites Back links and improvements to their sites
Google making changes to their methods of ranking sites by keyword.
So, in the world of organic listings you will see your site move a little from time to time. As we only control 2 of the factors, we can only react to the others. I never get to concerned with a ranking moving down for a week or two. We need to let things “settle” a bit before we assume what’s happening.
The monthly web managed services program will help and should, over time, continue to both stabilize your rankings as well as move them closer to the top.
Google Local has a tendency to be more stable once you’re established (at least so far). We think that’s based on the current ranking methods which are not SEO based, but specific to Local. Many SEO firms don’t even consider the LOCAL box and therefore fewer changes seem to be made to those listings.
This of course is changing every day as more firms realize how important that piece is. Google also has a test going on in CA. giving Local companies the ability to buy a simplified version of PPC and placing it above the Local Box. Seems to be little doubt this will get rolled out in one form or another nation wide over the next few months or quarters. How that effects site traffic will remain to be seen.
In general, Google would like SEO tactics to disappear, and allow what ever systems they employee to completely dictate rankings. So, they continue to make moves to discount traditional SEO tactics, and encourage better Web site structure instead. They continue to move to content being king and simple tactics like Meta tags, Keyword stuffed domain names, individual page name changes, and unrelated links becoming less important.
That’s why our monthly maintenance program makes sense. The first priority for us is to make sure we understand what’s changing every month, and then apply that knowledge to your Internet Visibility program. It’s also the reason we spend so much time on research and reporting.
For those of you interested in more information on our web visibility programs, or web managed services you can find more information on our site. www.salesjumpstart.net