Backlinks Santa Rosa

Backlinks For SEO And Ranking

Good morning to internet fans. It’s Ryan Perry with Simple Biz Support. Today is Internet Marketing Thursday and, as always, I have the beautiful and talented, Virginie Dorn, with Business Website Center down in Petaluma. Good morning, Virginie.

Virginie Dorn: Well, thank you, Ryan. Good morning to you too.

RP: Thank you. Today we’re going to jump right into it because we have a subject you could literally spend eight hours in a classroom learning about. But I think there’s still a lot of misconceptions and not really understanding around the topic of backlinks. So first of all, let’s explain to people, if you would, what exactly is a backlink in layman’s terms?

VD: Well, sure, fairly easy. A backlink is any incoming link onto your website. So they could come from other websites or even from emails. Anything that links back to your site is called a backlink. You have heard inbound links, inlinks, inward links, it’s all the same, they’re all backlinks to you.

RP: Alright, and I think that… And the one thing we want to clarify is, there’s also a thing called a “reciprocal link” and reciprocal linking is something that was used many, many, many years ago as an SEO tactic. And basically, I would go out to all my buddies with websites and go, “Hey John, Phil, Jane. If you put a link to my website, I’ll put a link to your website.” So now we’re reciprocating, and reciprocating links really don’t have the same value versus a link that’s coming from ABC website and linking directly to your website and that’s it, there’s no other link back to it.

VD: That is correct. It cancels out each other. Because what Google is looking is, like how many people link to you versus how many people you link to? So if your website is linking to 100,000 websites, so people have to leave your websites constantly, it is not great value. But if your website, a 100,000 other sites link to you then Google is like, “Hmm, that site must be of interest because there are so many other websites right now backlinking to that one”. So again, it’s a numbers game. You want more people linking to you than you want linking to them.

RP: Right, the way I break it down is that if you go back to the days of high school there’s the prom king and queen, and there’s only one king and there’s only one queen. And the reason why they are is because they got the votes, more people voted for them to be prom king and queen, therefore they rose to the top and they got that position. So if we think about that same analogy but with websites, I consider a backlink is like a vote for your website, I approve of your website. And from a social point of view, that’s something that’s really important for Google, from a algorithm point of view as, “Well, how far do we put this website up to the top?” The old rule of thumb was, whoever had the most backlinks or the most votes would automatically rise to the top. And obviously what Penguin and a number of other changes that have happened over the years, Google algorithm changes, that’s no longer the case because we had issues with link farms and link triangles and all kinds of schemes that are out there. So why don’t we talk a little bit about the quality of the backlink and how that can affect your ranking, either positively or negatively.

VD: Oh, absolutely. It’s all about the quality of the link, now. You’re better off having CNN and Fox News linked to your site than having some obscure donut shop down the street and have a Fasnacht donut shops. Having… And it’s also… The quality of the link, the quality of the website it comes from and how many visitors are those websites having and are they true visitors. So again, I’ll mention CNN and Fox news, huge traffic there. If they link to you, it’s definitely an indicator to Google then you are of importance since those big players are linking back to you. On the other side, if you have 100,000 backlinked to your site and they all come from China or Russia, or some pornographic website who knows what, you actually… No way does it bring no value to you, it’s like they’re going to penalize you. So it has the reverse effect. And now, instead of thinking, “Oh, I bought… I spent $29 on 100,000 backlinked, now I’m all good”, it’s the worse thing you could do. You’re actually going to be heavily penalized, it might disappear from the ranking altogether.

RP: Right, and those… And for people that don’t know, gosh, what’s it been? About a year ago, Google, maybe even longer now, Google started sending out emails to people who had links from what Google considered spammy websites from links from websites that were all on the same server that were known to just spam a lot, not create quality. And you would actually get a letter through your Webmaster Tools interface stating you need to clean this stuff up. Otherwise, you’re never going to be found on Google, you have too many poor links. And basically, from Google’s point of view, they’re going, “Hey, you’re trying to manipulate our algorithm, you’re trying to manipulate the system by generating all these backlinks”, and we used to be able to do that. Years and years ago that was basically what you have to do. Whoever had the most backlinks… Google trained us, whoever had the most backlinks won. And so, then it was a matter of, “Well, how can I get a 1000, 100,000, 1,000,000 backlinks and do it as inexpensively as possible?”

RP: And then, finally Google got smart enough to say, “Okay, enough’s enough. We really want to value backlinks”, and that’s where you mention CNN, Fox News, any of the big ones. It could be ESPN. That one link could have the same value as, say a 1000 other quality links, and when I say quality, they’re not from a link farm or link triangle, but they’re actually legitimate links but because they come from small websites that really don’t have a lot of credibility with Google, and typically that credibility is because they don’t have a lot of traffic, then those backlinks aren’t going to have as much value as something that’s on a major website. And the other thing you mentioned was, if you had a backlink from a donut shop, the other thing that Google’s looking for is relevancy. So, if you’re selling shoes and you’re getting backlinks from pet stores, Google doesn’t understand what’s the relevancy between shoes and pet supplies. So, when you’re trying to get backlinks, also understand your industry and try and get backlinks from other websites that are relevant to your industry.

VD: It’s very true. It has to be relevant to what it should do otherwise it doesn’t make sense. So, the algorithm has got so smart, it almost think like a human now. So, you compare the donut shop versus the shoes and versus the pet stores, and other type of backlink it should encourage having back to you, it would be from directories like Chamber of Commerce, networking organization you belong to, BNI, you name them. If they can backlink to you, they also have great value, even though they might not be industry specific to what you do, they’re still considered by Google and other search engines as quality incoming link. So, if you have multiple directories, you have members to own, make sure you optimize your profiles on each of those websites and enter your website if that’s a possibility. Not all they allow you to. But if they allow you to put your website on your profile, make sure you do. It’s a great tool to use.

RP: Right, and one of those is going to be if it’s an industry specific. So as an example, in the law industry, there’s a directory out there called Nolo, and with Nolo having that backlink because Nolo is a reputable viewed positively in Google’s eyes by having a backlink from Nolo, N-O-L-O, you are getting a quality backlink and it’s also industry specific, which is nice. But also like you said, having Chamber links, Better Business Bureau links, those are all reputable places, and therefore they’re quality backlinks.

VD: Yes. Even social media, Facebook, Yelp, you name them, Twitter. So that’s one thing. Twitter, for instance. There are different ways to think about it. We’re not here to talk about social media, but backlink from those social media platform are extremely important if they are done well. So, if you do a tweet mentioning new services you’re launching, make sure you put the URL there of that service specific page from your website. So Google will read the tweets, knows it’s about new shoes, and if you click on the link, it goes back to you. So, that’s also a backlink.

RP: Right. And a lot of people that I talk to, especially small business like, oh my gosh, there’s Twitter, there’s Google+, there’s Facebook, there’s this, there’s that. The reality is there’s hundreds of social media sites out there and a lot of times people feel overwhelmed that I don’t have enough time, energy, or desire to maintain all of these accounts. And from a linking point of view, that’s okay because we still want you to create that account even if you’re not going to use it on a regular basis because one of the things that Google is doing is they’re looking out on the internet and they’re trying to quantify or validate the fact that you’re a real business that actually has value. And by taking the time to create all those different social media accounts, putting your name in there, your phone number in there, your hours of operation if it makes sense, your address and a link back to your website, basically as Google is looking through and seeing that, it’s going, “Oh, Twitter, check, Facebook, check, Chamber of Commerce, check” and all it does, it just adds credibility that your website and your business is legit and therefore it’s going to help you with that ranking bringing you up to the top.

VD: Yes. So you have to use all those tools. And you mentioned people are overwhelmed, and I can see how people can be overwhelmed. It’s a lot to think about. Just, if you’re not sure, don’t do it. If you do want to do something that’s going to affect your website, make sure it’s the right thing to do, so you don’t get penalized and it’s too late. That farm linking scheme, and it was happening from the last two years, has really, we’ve heard about reverse effect on a lot of website that so we were so happy they jumped to page one, now they’re nowhere to be found and their domain name and sometimes the content of their website has been tagged.

RP: Basically, everything that they’ve built up has zero value now because they’ve been tagged by Google. I know both you and I have worked on an account that’s had that situation happen to them. Because we’re running out of time, the other thing I wanted to talk about was there was a Google algorithm change on the 25th. I forget what the name was, but it’s tied into Penguin and all that, and what they were targeting is blog, I’m going to call it the blog farm where basically you would sign up and become a member of this blog forum, if you will, and you would actually allow people to access your WordPress site and other people could leave blog posts on your website and it sounded like a great idea because other people are writing original content and then they are pushing that content out to other people’s websites which was supposed to be great. The problem was, most of the content that people were creating was garbage and therefore people were posting content on your website, that was duplicate content, that was spun, that really didn’t have any value and therefore it really just didn’t add any value to your website. And so I know there was an update on the 25th of last month where Google was targeting those types of content.

RP: Basically, to me, in a nutshell, if somebody’s offering a… It comes down to if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is. They’re going to give you a 1000 backlinks. Even if they say their page ranked eight or better for a $100, the reality is you’re trying to game the system, it’s really not going to help you any. The best way to get backlinks is network in your community is through a local paper that needs somebody to write content about state planning if you’re state planning, if it’s about shoes, about how to protect your feet. And if they are… If they have a digital version of that newspaper, can I if I write an article, put a link back to my website? That is one of the best ways to get backlinks is really engage or work with other companies that have similar interests where you can go ahead and link back to your website. We got a minute left. What are your final thoughts here Virginie?

VD: Ditto. I agree with everything you said. Do it right, don’t go for the cheapy offer because you know it’s going to backfire. If it’s too good to be true it is certainly too good to be true [chuckle]

RP: Yeah and unfortunately the problem is, it’s like when you, let’s say you buy a car or something and it works great for the first three years and you’re happy, you’re driving along and then all of a sudden it breaks. And the first thing that they go and they go see the mechanic is, “The car ran fine until… ” Well, the problem is when it comes to your website my ranking was fine until. And then until it’s going to be, well Google made an algorithm change to target people who are trying to cheat the system and I finally got caught and now my website has zero value. So, take the time and energy, especially if you plan on being in business for a long time. Take the time and energy to do it right because it will pay off in the long run for you.

VD: Absolutely.

RP: Alright, perfect. Well, it is 10:00 AM. That is everything you need to know about backlinks in 15 minutes. There’s plenty more that you do need to know but it would take more than 15 minutes, so we’re not going to talk about it. Virginie, as always I appreciate your time.

VD: Take care. Have a great week.

RP: You too, thank you. Bye.

Simple Biz Support has clients in Santa Rosa, Las Vegas and Petaluma to name a few places.

About Ryan Perry

Ryan Perry has taken his 10+ years of business ownership and hands-on marketing skills and focused them on online marketing. In April of 2009, he started Simple Biz Support with an emphasis on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Ryan is propelling local business websites to the top of Google, Yahoo and Bing resulting in increased market exposure and revenue for his clients using a variety of internet marketing tools including blogs, article submissions and video. Additionally, Ryan speaks and vlogs (video blogs) about internet marketing, educating business owners how to effectively use various SEO tools and techniques to promote their business on the internet. Ryan currently resides in Santa Rosa, CA. Connect with Ryan on Google+

My Google Plus – Do You Have An Account?

Hey. Good morning, Internet fans. It’s Ryan Perry with Simple Biz Support. It is Thursday morning, therefore it’s another episode of Internet Marketing Thursday, and as usual I have the beautiful and talented Virginie Dorn with Business Website Center down in Petaluma, California. Good morning Virginie.

Virginie Dorn: Good Morning Ryan, thank you for the compliment. Hi.

RP: Oh boy, always, always. I am doing wonderful, thank you. I see the windows are open, so it must not be raining out.

RP: We were talking before the broadcast how cool it is that you can actually have the broadcast go live on Facebook, and so I was showing Virginie how to do it. When I first learned how to do this, when I was doing a broadcast on Social Media Wednesday with Sarah Giometti, I did the same thing, I left it on, but it was the YouTube channel I left on. That’s the first place I went when we started hearing the playback, was the YouTube channel because that’s where I screwed up the first time with Sarah, so I go and I turn it off and it’s still playing and I can’t figure out why, and it’s because it wasn’t on YouTube that it was playing, it was on the Facebook page that I showed you. I clicked play to show you “Look, it will say that it’s starting, and then it’ll go live at 9:45″. So that was fun. Yeah, Okay. Let’s see. We are going to talk about Google Plus today. Actually, it’s not… What the heck is it? It’s Google for business?

VD: No, Google My Business.

RP: Google My Business. So specifically, this episode is for business owners with at least one physical location. Ideally, you’re going to have a physical location. If you’ve been dealing with Google, the map section, Places, Business, now My Business, it hasn’t been the easiest transition over let’s say the last three years since Google Plus came out. Now I can remember the early days when we already had a presence in Google Places, or the map section on Google, it was it’s own independent database, and then Google Plus came out and that was initially a social media account that was just a personal account, like Facebook. And as they kind of grew that and figured everything out, then they finally added business, but this was a separate database over here in Google Place and Google Plus, but you still had your Google Places account, so then you had to merge it.

RP: And you are talking about clients that you had that lost photos, you lost reviews. It was just crazy crazy crazy trying to merge everything together, trying to get it into one database. And today we’re going to talk about that a lot of those problems I think have been fixed, and they’ve actually made it much easier to manage your business account now on Google Plus. Is that correct?

VD: It is correct. It has been a bit of a nightmare the last few months, ’cause they are working through all the glitches of changing products. I’m just hoping that now that we have Google My Business, they’re going to stop releasing new products related to businesses and give us 24 months to master the product before retiring the product and launching a new one which is pretty much what they’ve done three times in a row in the last three years. Google Map, then we had Google Places for Business which was the interaction to Google Map, and we had Google Plus pages for business, and now all of this is gone, now it’s only Google My Business.

VD: One thing I want to reassure people who listen to us that if they did have a Google Plus account for their business or a Google Places for business account, those are not gone, what they have done is Google actually automatically upgraded those accounts to Google My Business. So you still log in the same way you did with a an user name and password, but you do have to go to Google My Business today if you have not done so and make sure all your information is still there, because oftentimes as we just said, things just got lost in the migration. So, you want to make sure they still have your correct information, but even if you are still there, your photographs most likely are gone; that has happened to most people.

RP: And just to clarify, so that when you say you should go there, in going there you need to log into the account. You need to use your user name and password for the account that was originally created, may have been a year ago, two years ago, three years ago, you need to log in, and hopefully it’s the right account because a lot of people create different e-mail accounts for different things, but you want to log into the right account. And let me do a quick screen share… I don’t have a thing open though, ’cause I tried shutting everything down, just to show people what we’re talking about.

VD: When you look… So, they need to make sure they go to, lowercase so /business… They made it at least very easy to get to that page. And from that page you can sign in at the top right corner and use what you had used in the past to go to your Google Places, and your Google Plus page’s dashboards.

RP: Right. So, I logged in, and in the upper right hand corner. You may not have all of these but ideally you’ll actually have at least one page and you can click on ‘Manage My Page’, and that will take you… Now, if you don’t have anything at all, you may be logged into the wrong account, and then you want to actually try and log in to a different account at that time.

VD: Yes. And again, if they don’t remember, just go to, not ‘mybusiness’, which is the confusion. They want to call and brand themselves Google My Business, but everywhere you go, it’s So the word M-Y has disappeared. In the business, in our industry we call it Google Business. So, I think the M-Y in the middle is cumbersome, I don’t know what their marketing people were thinking [chuckle] Anyway, it’s a free product…

RP: Yeah, they don’t want to make anything easy. I think when it comes to Google, they’ve made it painfully clear, “We don’t want to make anything easy.”

VD: They keep us on our toes; they keep us busy, for sure.

RP: Definitely for sure. So, now that people get in there… You said that there’s been some changes, things are… Hopefully, it’s all in one database, so what’s the key benefit to people from a business owners’ point of view now? Why would they even want to get in there?

VD: Well, the biggest change they’ve made is truly the multiple location. So, if… Business that had multiple locations within the same city, or within the US, you’re now able to manage this all on the same dashboard. In the past, typically you’ll create multiple accounts, and sometimes those accounts were tied as duplicates, because Google was getting all confused may be you used the same e-mail, or the same phone number. Imagine you’re a nationwide company, and you have a toll-free number, you don’t have 50 toll-free number for every state you cover, but you may have 50 office locations so, the biggest change has definitely been the multiple location capability. The dashboard you were showing a couple of minutes ago was showing one of our clients you and I work on, and they had multiple locations so, it’s all from the same dashboard.

VD: Everything else… It’s kinda the same, it’s still very cumbersome to get it approved, there is no exact rule. You might enter information like the service description, your hours, but perhaps some category, you fill your business applied to, and sometimes they are approved right away, sometimes we need to go to a review, sometimes we need to send a postcard, sometimes they need to give you a phone call, and there’s truly no ruling as to why; it’s part of a new algorithm within Google to what define what needs approval or not. So, you might make a lot of changes seen on your business dashboard, but if you go to the live site of Google Map, you might not see those changes yet because they are under review.

VD: And also, they don’t like it when you make too many changes. So, let’s say you put your phone number, and you put an address, and you realize your suite number is wrong, and it just got approved, now you have to change it, “Oh my God, it was 101 not 102.” And then you get tagged, just because every time you make a single change afterwards, it has to be re-approved, and they don’t like that. So, you make sure you do it right the first time, because it will slow down your process of approval if you have to make many edits on your account.

RP: Right. And I think the important thing is that when you’re filling out the account for the first time… I was trying to use Wikipedia as a template and that is that Google loves information, so the more information you can fill out in the forms, and it’s not just filling out your hours of business, when did you open, your description, but it’s also video, it’s pictures, all of that stuff… They don’t just want one picture, and it’s your business logo, they want to actually see multiple pictures in there. And if you have links to video, they want to see links to video.

VD: Especially if they are on YouTube, ’cause as you and I know, it’s the mafia out there. [chuckle] They own YouTube as well, so if you have video, put them on YouTube and then tag them on your Google My Business account.

RP: Right. Now, the one thing I do like about My Business is that if you go in, all the information is very easy to find. Let me do a screen share again. So, here’s a client of mine… Oops, I gotta click share, that might help. So here’s a client in Santa Rosa, and what I really like is that they have… Basically the dashboard’s very clean these days.

VD: Yes.

RP: There’s a lot of information. I don’t have to go to multiple places. I can see kind of everything all in one place and I think that’s one of the things that makes this… It’s a cleaner design, it’s easier to navigate, and it’s easier to find information. Now, the one thing I do get frustrated with is that whenever I… I always think I need to click on this, it actually takes you to “My business”, and so instead you just need to hover over it. So if we want to actually see the page or we want to hover and we want to do whatever it is, you can go ahead and do that. But I think the “My Business” page itself is much, much easier to navigate and find information because they put a lot of information in one place so that you’re not having to go, “Oh, I gotta go here to find this, I gotta go here to go there.” So that’s the one thing I do like about it.

VD: I do too. And when people have multiple pages, like you do on your dashboard, you can select one and if you want to go to that page, there is always a link at the top right and that’s where I click. I know you use the drop down. There’s so many tools. I think it’s almost too many. Just focus on the basic and master those basics. Make sure all your information is there. Most of the time people are forgetting very vital information within their profile. And try to understand all the products associated with Google Plus.

RP: Right.

VD: And look and see…

RP: I think that the big thing with this where we’re at today versus two years or three years ago is that Google had a huge database that then they created a new database and they had to merge those two together. And that process at this point, it’s done as far as I can tell. And so because they took… And think of Google, how many millions of pieces of information does Google store just about business owners and their location, so imagine merging that information into one database. How many problems you’re going to have? So if you haven’t looked at your Google Plus account recently, I would highly recommend doing that as a business owner to make sure, are the images current, the address correct, phone number, all that type of stuff. Maybe you have pictures of employees that are no longer with the business, you need to change those out.

RP: And as always, it’s good to be active in Google. Google wants to see that you’re active in there. So if you haven’t gone into your Google Business account or Google My Business for some time, it’s kind of like, “hey, how important is Google to your business?” Well if you want to be found, Google should be very, very important to your business.

VD: Yes. Do you think it’s alright for me to share the screen of the KLF for their main account?

RP: I would say yes, however it’s 10 o’clock, so why don’t we hold off. If you were going to showcase something, let’s hold off until next week and we can dig a little bit deeper into Google My Business next week. How’s that sound?

VD: Yeah, let’s go in more deeper in, like the people’s section, the description of the business sections, the links section, the community section of that Google, the business profile.

RP: That sounds good. For now though, that is the end of our broadcast. I hope everybody enjoyed the SNAFU at the beginning. I promise, I will get this figured out, so hopefully it doesn’t happen again. And Virginie, as always, I appreciate your time, and I hope you have a wonderful day.

VD: You too, Ryan. Take care.

RP: Alright. Bye.

About Ryan Perry

Ryan Perry has taken his 10+ years of business ownership and hands-on marketing skills and focused them on online marketing. In April of 2009, he started Simple Biz Support with an emphasis on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Ryan is propelling local business websites to the top of Google, Yahoo and Bing resulting in increased market exposure and revenue for his clients using a variety of internet marketing tools including blogs, article submissions and video. Additionally, Ryan speaks and vlogs (video blogs) about internet marketing, educating business owners how to effectively use various SEO tools and techniques to promote their business on the internet. Ryan currently resides in Santa Rosa, CA. Connect with Ryan on Google+