The reason I don’t like the idea of “SEOs” in general, is that a lot of them prioritize link building. Link building, in itself, is a phrase that is against Google’s intent. I’ll explain why and why it should matter to you.
Several other things play into SEO Services for bloggers as well as other sites. Some of what’s necessary to rank well:
Google determines a lot about your site by the links that it receives (known as incoming or inbound links). If SEO had a currency, links would be it. More links = more google love, usually.
The rational is this: If Better Home & Gardens linked to you, it is likely your Hydrangeas really are that beautiful. If I linked to your hydrangea post, I’m sure it wouldn’t keep Google up at night pondering the awesomeness of your flower garden.
This is for three reasons.
When a site links to you – they are saying, “Hey, look over here – this is exactly what you are looking for.” Or at a minimum, they believe it will serve their audience in some way.
Since I have neither relevance nor authority on the topic of hydrangeas, any link I provide is useless.
This brings me to all the stinky sleazy services that promise you 20 – 30 – 40 and more links for $$$. And those links are from authoritative sites. What they don’t tell you is that they may not be relevant sites.
This is a bad risk to take. This is so bad you will loose all your SEO traffic, and your money and your house and be homeless – bad. It’s that bad.
You don’t. That’s the whole idea.
I’ve lost countless minutes in Google trying to find this saying – I think it was a famous woman(really narrows it down) – who said:
“…if you have to tell someone how special you are, you aren’t.”
That’s pretty much Google’s philosophy. And if you follow this line of thinking, it’s easy to determine which links are ‘good’ and which are ‘bad’.
Obviously those little links didn’t do anything wrong. It’s kind of mean to personalize them like that. But. There are definitely links that comply with Google’s guidelines and those that do not. Which ones do you want on your site?
Links that comply with Google’s guidelines are ones that are not paid for, traded for, co-erced into, or any other way of getting them. They are simply earned by the value you provide.
So you’re wondering about that link exchange you’re a part of? I’m afraid those are not Google compliant, no matter how well meaning your blogging friend is. However, it can work, if your friend would link to you anyway. It is subjective at best.
When I am writing a list post about various tools I like and use, it is natural to simply link to them. I don’t edit them to be nofollow.
If I was being compensated in any way for that same list, then it is my ethical obligation to divulge that information. The only way I know of divulging that to Google, is to use a nofollow link. Plus, it is explicitly noted in their guidelines that a nofollow link is required in those situations.
So – in conclusion – do NOT buy link-building services.
BUT – you can build links. It involves a lot of networking, research in your niche, providing very valuable content at the right time to the right person to earn a link.
It is very time and labor intensive. It requires an understanding of your niche, company, strategy, culture and society. So any good SEO company will also be very expensive.
I know it’s not reasonable for any of us to do it all ourselves. And there are a few tasks that are safe to delegate. Like these:
The items in italics are only sort-of safe. As with anything, you have to know your business, your audience and their expectations. Whoever works with you on these tasks especially, represents your business to the world. Keep a close(loving) eye on these team members.
Italics & asterisks are activities that aren’t front-facing, but they have a great impact on all the other activities. You get these wrong, and the entire campaign goes down the drain.
Think about that a minute! We like to skip ads, and most of the time, we are not looking for “recipes” and “photos”. We are looking for a specific ethnic recipe; or inspiration for a headshot. The more specific the request, the more chance you have of ranking for it.