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This post describes a method by which will allow you to increase your visibility in Google at zero cost.

It is common knowledge that community users (of blogs and Digg) do not click adwords, because:

  • They tend to be more ‘savvy’ than the average Internet user
  • They are information hungry, and particular
  • They know what adwords are, and know that they are unlikely to lead to the kind of content they are looking for

Getting a good presence on Google will attract new readers who are less savvy and consequently more click happy $$$ :-)

The problem with community networks

Of late there has been a lot of activity in terms of speed linking and review exchanges between blogger’s.

Whilst these are useful ways of increasing exposure and traffic for your blog, they are useless in terms of improving visibility on Google.

Why? It is believed (only Google know for sure) that:

  1. Reciprocal links cancel each other out
  2. The value of each link is, divided by the number of links on a page, so, if a single link from a page is worth 100%, then 10 links on the same page would be worth only 10% each.

So, in Google terms, speed linking in particular is of very little value, especially if the links are reciprocated.

In terms of Google, the best kind links are:

  1. One way inbound links (not reciprocated)
  2. Relevant to the content of your site, and themselves SEO’d

This is why ReviewMe is becoming so popular, it is not just about traffic, it is about search engine marketing.

Step 1 Build a receptor for your reviews!

To get the most from your review you need some well SEO’d content to link to, i.e. some content geared to ‘receiving’ these links.

First make sure your blog is Search Engine Optimised, on WordPress you should:

  • Enable Permalinks (which put the post title into the URL)
  • Set the page title to put the post name before the blog name

Then write a couple of posts containing your keywords. Make sure you work the keywords into the post title, as this becomes:

  • The page URL
  • The page Title (visible in the blue bar at the top of the browser)
  • The H1 tag in the post title

These are the three most important elements of a page so make sure you get the post title right, closely, or exactly matching the keywords you want to target!

Then work keywords into the content of your posts, using a process of ‘stemming’. For example, if you wanted to stem the keyword “learn”:

  • Learn
  • Learns
  • Learnt
  • Learned
  • Learner
  • Learning

Step 2 Writing the review

The review needs to be written in a similar way to your ‘receptor posts’, again remembering the importance of the post title and key worded content.

The reviewer should link back to the posts you specify, putting relevant keywords into the link text.

Only ever target one keyword per review, if you try to hit too many keywords you will ‘dilute’ the effect of the review.

Being told how and what to write understandably goes against the grain with most blogger’s. To overcome this I offer to write my own review, and give them the option of pre-dating the review so that it does not appear on their front page.

Whilst a review on the front page is desirable (it usually has the highest page rank), over time the effect will be the same, as the post will soon be relegated to the archives anyway. If tucking the review away in the archives helps secure the exchange, then it is an option worth considering.

Remember, you are not aiming for short-term traffic or direct referrals; the purpose of this exercise is long-term generation of Google Traffic.

Step 3 Avoiding Reciprocal Links

Google and other search engines began using links to determine the importance of a site, the logic being, if you take the time to link to a site, you must think that site is good.

That logic fell apart as soon as search engines started using links as a metric, because site owners began exchanging links indiscriminately in order to boost their own page rank.

Current thinking is that Google now only places importance on one way inbound links, which are more likely to be ‘genuine’.

Getting one way links is almost impossible for new sites / blogs, unless your content is very special, or you are prepared to pay for them.

The only solution I have to this problem is ‘Review Syndication’. For me this is easy as I have two blogs. I ask for a review for one blog, and post the reciprocal review on another.

If you only have one blog, you will need to lever the power of your community, i.e. “Review my blog, and my friend will review yours”. The correct term for this process is “Link Triangulation”, which has been used by webmasters for some time, but seems to be an overlooked technique within the blogsphere.

Link triangulation is a more complex than conventional link exchanges and can only be achieved by reliable well organised blogger’s, but, as I have already stated, building Google page rank is never cheap quick or easy, which is why it has commercial value.

For this to work you need to find new blogs to syndicate with, i.e. blogs outside your community to whom you have not already linked.

If your in for the long haul and are interested in review syndication leave your blog name, and a short description in the comments below and I will crate a page of possible participants for your ‘review syndicate’ (assuming there is interest).

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    1 Comment

    [...] information there. As I began to write this review I was shocked by the appearance of this post: Writing a Smart review / Review Syndication! Here I am writing a review about a blog and that blogger was kind enough to leave me instructions! [...]

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