Weekly SEO Q&A – Hump Day Hangouts – Episode 53

By Joriel


Click on the video above to watch Episode 53 of the Semantic Mastery Hump Day Hangouts.

Full timestamps with topics and times can be found at the link above.

The latest upcoming free SEO Q&A Hump Day Hangout can be found at https://semanticmastery.com/humpday.




Adam: … Hangouts today. It's the 4th of November and as you well know we've passed the 1 year mark and we are on episode 53. We'll go down the list here as usual and say hello. How's it going Chris?

Chris: Hey Adam! How's everybody doing?

Adam: Good, Hernan, how's it going?

Hernan: Hey stranger, hey everyone. It's good to be here.

Adam: I got nothing. Marco, how you doing man?

Marco: That's pseudo Adam, what's up man?

Adam: Hey Bradley, what's up?

Bradley: Yeah, that's the kinder, gentler Adam with the nose scruff beard.

Chris: Yeah, it's for [crosstalk 00:00:36].

Bradley: It's for aerodynamics so he can run faster.

Adam: I had to make some changes after Halloween, and if Kendrick's here and he asks I'll post that picture from Halloween and I don't rock a goatee and that's why I had to shave. I'll share that picture if he's on here, because he was asking about it.

Bradley: The door is wide open for Wayne Clayton.

Adam: Yeah.

Chris: You shaved the beard halfway for Halloween?

Adam: Yeah.

Chris: Like split face, like I'm serious?

Adam: Oh no, not like halfway. I had like just the goatee like the part right here. [crosstalk 00:01:09].

Chris: Okay.

Marco: Yeah, it was pretty good I saw the picture.

Adam: Yeah, I was pretty happy.

Bradley: Kevin Butler says, Bradley will go beardless next week? No my face is too fat. If I don't have a beard then I look funny.

Adam: Oh man. Well today we just have 1 quick announcement so go ahead and let everybody know if you haven't heard we do have a date for the release of the Twitter SEO Academy, which I believe actually somebody was asking about. That is going to be on Monday, the 23rd of November, so stay tuned. We will definitely be having some more information and some details about it, but we wanted to say we've got the release date, and we're getting ready for that.

Bradley: Do you want to mention that JV page in case anybody wants to promote it?

Adam: I do, I do not have the link on me so I will grab it and post it up here but we've got a … Hernan will do that. Thank you.

Hernan: Mm-hmm (affirmative)-

Adam: Yeah, if you are interested in promoting, by all means Hernan will drop the link in there, go check it out, see if that's what you want to do. You can also win some great prizes so just check out the JV page and it's pretty self-explanatory.

Bradley: Yep, that's pretty much it. Was there anything else we had?

Marco: Aren't we also finalizing dates for the Costa Rica summit?

Bradley: Oh yeah.

Marco: Or is that only? Are we going to talk about that tomorrow in the Master Mind, how are we going to do that?

Bradley: Yeah I think so. I think Adam said we wanted to mention that tomorrow during the Master Mind webinar. then we'll kind of do a full announcement of it next week. Yeah, we're finalizing those details now.

Adam: Yeah, I think we mentioned it last week or the week before, and we'll tell everybody some more about it later, but the Master Mind members get the details first.

Bradley: Okay, cool. All right well we've got lots of questions already, this is the first week in after our 1 year anniversary so this is kind of exciting. Just a reminder guys, we will be here next week but the following week we will not have a Hump Day Hangout 2 weeks from today because we're all going to be meeting face-to-face for the first time, believe it or not, in Miami. We'll be out of town that week. We're going to take that week off so, just so you guys are aware of that. Besides that we've got lots of questions which is good. Let's go ahead and jump right in and get to it. Can you guys see my screen okay?

Hernan: Yep.

Best Approach for Posting Content

Bradley: Okay cool. All right Renier says, if I have a bunch of posts with a lot of good juicy content that I want indexed what would be the best approach? Use a theme that puts all the posts on a blog page as well as displays them in full on the main page, just leave them on a blog page only, or display them on the main page in full to avoid possible duplicate content issues in, I guess, option A?

Honestly, most blogs don't display the full text post anymore. They usually just display a snippet and then a “read more” button. That's in part because of duplicate content issues that can occur. If you're going to display a full text post, and by the way as far as you're saying you want them to be indexed, you know indexing is easy guys, especially if you have decent content, it's not hard to get stuff indexed.

You can submit the URL directly to Google Webmaster tools, even if you don't have your website connected to the search console. It doesn't matter. You can submit your URL's there. Something else that you can do is just tweet, just tweet the URL like, as long as your Twitter account isn't in the sandbox, which is again all that's covered in the Twitter SEO Academy which we just mentioned earlier that's going to be released later this month. If you have a Twitter account that has a few followers, and you're not in the sandbox, you can just tweet a blog post URL and the spiders will come crawling and index it, damn near instantly. As far as indexing that's not a problem.

These questions alone though, you know apart from indexing, I would suggest just leaving the blog page. If you're worried about duplicate content issues, number 1, don't put in the full text post. Most themes are going to truncate them anyway, most themes. Some of them will give you an option, but most of the time there's no reason for the full text post to be displayed on a blog page anyways. In fact, on our own blog, it's semanticmastery.com, I don't know if you guys have visited our blog recently, but go to semanticmastery.com. Click on the blog button at the top navigation bar. We hired a content manager. She is pumping out so much content, it's freaking awesome. Check out our blog. If you're not already subscribed, subscribe to our RSS feed.

We had to, because of the Hump Day Hangouts that we post, the replay on our blog, we ended up having to truncate the post. We had them set to full text, but we had to truncate it because otherwise you've got this huge scroll area to get through if the posts are long before you get to the next post. That can be a bit irritating. It's better just to have it truncated and have a “read more” button. Again, this has nothing to do with indexing, either on … Any of these questions won't effect indexing at all. It's just a matter of user, you know visitor experience I guess.

Hernan: Yeah, I was about to say just that, Bradley. User experience should be your number 1 priority Reiner. If you have that “read more” button it will trigger an interaction. On Google analytics it will show as an interaction as an actual click. In case somebody lands on your home, they will have to read more to check them out. In fact, there are newspapers and magazines and what not, that they have these carousels, or slides, that you need to go through them in order to read the full post. That's also enticing in interaction. I think the informer.com has a quote before you actually see the page and you need to close that quote and that's counted as an interaction. They are always trying to trigger that click from the visitor so you should do the same.

Bradley: Yeah you're manipulating engagement. Essentially you're forcing engagement on your post, which is good for user engagement metrics, which is the number 1 most important ranking signal now. Right? Is user engagement. I totally agree with Hernan. Usually what I'll do is if I … Most sites don't have blog rolls on the homepage. They might have a, most real sites guys. PBN sites, completely different story, but that's in part why PBN sites get de-indexed a lot too is because they always have the blog roll on the home page.

For most real, normal type websites, they're not going to have a blog roll on the home page. They might have an area like a featured area, where some, the most recent blog posts will be displayed, the featured image and then the link over to actually view the blog post. Most websites don't display full text, or posts on the homepage anymore. The home page is more of a static thing with maybe some dynamically updated sections.

I recommend you just have a blog page on your site. Then, obviously you can always now index the blog page. You can do that in your SEO plugin settings, whatever SEO plugin, they all have similar functions. You can now index the blog page if you want, don't “no follow it” though because you want any juice coming in on that page to flow through to the posts. It's entirely up to you. I usually just leave it to index and just set it to display all the posts on the blog page.

RankBrain & Long Tail Keyword Phrases

Okay, Sky says I'm curious on your thoughts of RankBrain and the future of long-tail key word phrases. Do you think the beginner SEO people are going to have a much more difficult time getting into the game? Yes, Sky, but if you ask me that 2 weeks ago or 2 months ago or 15 months ago, I'd a said the same thing. If you ask me 6 months from now, I'm going to say the same thing of course. Getting into the SEO game later is always going to be harder than getting in sooner.

It's just more complex. It's becoming more complex on a daily basis. That's the nature of what we do. That's our business. That's why you can make a lot of money doing it too, because it weeds out all the riffraff, so to speak. The people that are lazy or that don't, you know, if you're not, SEO is not something that you can do if you're not truly passionate about it because it does require an awful lot of study and testing and time to put into it. As far as is it going to be harder for people getting into the game? Yes, but that's a good thing for those of us that are already into the game, or for those people that are incredibly ambitious. You know, they aren't afraid to put in the work.

It says, I'm having good success with long-tail phrases and wonder if the following approach makes sense. A more difficult ranking phrase would be my top level page. Then have 3 to 4 pages with very similar keyword phrases and different content would all interlink and also link to the top level page, or with RankBrain does it make more sense to focus on a single page and try to rank for all the different phrases? I think the former approach is easier, but I know Google wants the latter. At some point they might penalize the multiple page approach.

Sky, since Panda 3 or 3.1, I can't remember, it was around April of 2014, whichever one that was, it was a Panda update, I have been saying the second part of what you mentioned there, which is, it's unnecessary to build silo's out now with the top-level term and then a whole bunch of very related keywords each with their own separate post to make up a silo. In fact, I think that's over optimization because each one of those posts are targeting one specific keyword that is very closely related to the main keywords that you're trying to rank for. It's almost as if it's duplicate content. Even if it is unique content on each post, or supporting article, it's overkill.

I have found since Panda 3.0 or 3.1 whenever that was back in April of 2014, that you're better off going with a long copy page and have sections, headings basically, that separate the sections where you target those addition keywords. Then if you're going to be doing, if you need to set up the silo structure to boost that page, which is still, quite, most likely it's going to be necessary, you target the really long-tail stuff or questions, stuff that you can find using tools like, Power Suggest Pro, Google Suggest Keyword Phrases because those are generally very long-tail.

They're low competition, and they make sense because it's actual search queries that people are typing into Google. You optimize the post for those type of queries and then interlink those up to your top-level page in which case would have all of the supporting keywords covered in that one page. What would typically be a normal silo structure, or a traditional silo structure as we've known it, for the last several years, would be to have your top-level term, you know, 800-1000 words on the page.

Then you find 4 or 5 supporting keywords that are closely related to that top-level term and, you have blog posts of you know 600 to 1000 words for each one of those keywords. Each post focusing around 1 specific keyword. Then you interlink all of those up to the top level page. Again, in my opinion it's like how many times can you say “blue widgets” without it becoming overkill or repetitive? Do you know what I'm saying?

In my opinion and through my testing, I have found having 1 top-level page with abut 1500 to 2000 words is much more effective. Then you use those long-tail phrases that you find through suggest scraping tools, such as Power Suggest Pro as your blog post. Because they'll rank damn near instantly because of the long-tail nature of them and their supporting type keywords search queries that people are actually typing in. You want to compound on that Hernan or Marco or anybody?

Hernan: I think that you nailed it with the content [lens 00:13:37]. I mean, if you're providing content for the user, the least that you can do is, I would say, I don't know 1200 words or 1500 words or 2000 words for a money post or something like that. On those 2000 words you have more than enough room to get all of those synonyms because have in mind the RankBrain has been developed and deployed with Hummingbird. That was the main idea of Hummingbird is to give working RankBrain on the background. My point is that Google is becoming smarter when [intro-crediting 00:14:16] or seeing what people want, actually, what they are looking for when typing [crosstalk 00:14:24] …

Bradley: What is their search intent?

Hernan: Yeah exactly, so when typing content queries it has to process a lot of synonyms. That's why Google is so advanced, in my opinion, in English, English language. In other languages, it's still a bit behind, that's because you know the language pattern and the syn tags and the grammar of the English language makes it right now a priority. When you're using a ton of synonyms, and a ton of [LSIs 00:14:55], and you're using a ton of objects with a scheme marking up things, you have a ton content there. I don't think there's a need for old, like 5 years ago or 10 years ago, SEO tactics where you would put a lot of similar page with similar keywords.

Bradley: Again, I think it's overkill. At some time it will pull your site down because it's repetitive. It's like you can't, and I know, look that's how I used to build sites too because it worked, but I don't think that's necessary anymore. Through a lot of websites that I've built since that update, I've seen the big difference. Like Hernan just said, you know RankBrain has been being developed since Hummingbird was introduced to, which basically replaced … It was the beginning of Google Semantic Web engine, right?

Hernan: Right.

Bradley: Which is what Hummingbird was, and that's where complex queries come in. More natural language type patterns started to emerge in the search queries as far as what kind of result were returned. A lot of that had to do with because of the voice search now through mobile devices because people speak their search into Google instead of just typing it in. That's where Hummingbird came in, and so knowing that and, that's where the Google Suggest Keyword Phrases or search phrases come in. That's why they're so, in my opinion, the best type of keywords to be targeting in SEO.

Remember guys, the Google Keyword planner is an SEO, excuse me, it's an AdWords tool it's for people bidding on pay-per-click keywords. It is not SEO tool. Although you can use that to give you some ideas on search volumes and such, it is not the best tool to be using for finding keywords for SEO purposes. Suggest, however is in my opinion, the best and most efficient way to find keywords and search queries that people are actually typing in to Google, and then optimizing for those whether that … That's a playground with a lot less competition. Does that make sense? Anyways, hopefully that answered your question. We're going to move on.

Ranking to Page 1 Quickly

Carlos has 2 questions 1-completed site siloed and plugins installed, 2 full tier, where's the 2 questions? Okay, this is a checklist to get to the questions. I get it. Full-tiered network integrated, 4 rings, tier 1, and 3 tier-2, okay backlink commando and indexes are set about 20 articles and 6 videos. Most keywords targeted with Power Suggest are on page 2, some are on page 1. I'll plus 1 that. First question, what is the immediate thing I need to do to push all my posts to page 1 FCS SociSynd to crowd search saved et cetera, what do you recommend?

Okay I don't recommend using SociSynd anymore. That was a great, great tool that I used, like extensively. I used it very very heavily. I had 2 installs of it actually, Enterprise installs because I used it so much for about a year-and-a-half. In about the last 6 months, it's really gone down hill because of spammers. I don't recommend using SociSynd for tier 1 anything anymore. You can still use it for videos, for boosting videos, and for 2nd-tier and 3rd-tier links. I don't recommend using it for 1st-tier. I would cross that off the list.

As far as pushing your posts to page 1, yeah I mean there's a lot of things that you can do Carlos. It's pretty much endless, the amount of, the things that you can do. The possibilities are endless. That's what I was looking to say.

You know, one thing that I like to do is take, you can actually grab the post URLs from the web 2 accounts, on your tier-1 branded network. Then boost those, those specific post URLs, because they're going to be linking back to the original post on the money side anyways so you can use those as buffers. Typically what I do, I hear Hernan ready to chime in, give me 1 second.

Hernan: Sure.

Bradley: Typically what I'll do is I'll boost the homepages of all the tier-1 properties, because it takes too much additional effort to extract the post URLs specially to build links to. However, so I just do it all by boosting the homepages. Eventually the post will paginate, right, will push off the homepage.

If I have some posts on my money site that just need a little bit of an additional boost, I'll go pull my post URLs from like, Blogger, Tumblr, WordPress, those properties, and then I'll set up link-building campaigns to those post URLs which will ultimately funnel back to my money site and help to boost those. Now, you can jump in Hernan.

Hernan: Okay thank you. No, I mean my main point here is that I totally agree with you Bradley. It will depend a lot, Carlos, on what niche your in, and the competition, and what not, you already know that. What my process would be, once you have the entire silo, and the IFTTT network working, then I start pumping the IFTTT network. Usually, I wait a couple of weeks because at some point you do not need to power them up, you know, at some point.

If you're on a much more competitive niche then yeah, I would suggest that you start powering them up with FCS Networker and GSA, or with GSA only, or with [Sage 00:20:25]. Then I do for a kick-start, I do a press release, so as to kind of equalize the link profile of that particular website.

Then I can start being a tad more aggressive with the internal linking with posting because every post that you make with that exact mark anchor in a post, linking back to another page inside your website, it will syndicate out. Those will be exact-matched links.

Once you have a press release done, fully branded, fully URL links, then you can start pumping up your IFTTT networks. Then you can start doing some save to internal pages as Bradley was saying. I usually just start with the basic on site, and the IFTTT network, and see if that's enough, which usually is for ranking for long-term and for long-tails.

Bradley: I'll second what you said about press releases guys, I use the hell out of press releases. I love them. I think it's a great strategy for not just for SEO purposes, but also for just driving traffic. Press releases are a great way to also build … Those can be used to build tier-1 links. I recommend that you use either branded anchors or naked URLs, if you're going to do that, because otherwise you can get in trouble for over optimizing anchor texts very easily.

The other thing is you mentioned crowd searching, yeah absolutely. Now keep in mind with crowd search, I don't like to run direct traffic to my money site using crowd search, unless it's with navigational terms only, which means brand searches. At some point I feel like that's going to get websites in trouble.

What I typically will do is set up a referral traffic campaign where I'm running traffic through my web 2 post or social media post, back to the money site. It's a 2-step process, crowd search searches for the web 2 post, finds the web 2 post which would be from IFTTT network and then clicks on that. Then you tell crowd search to use the internal link feature to find the link back to your post on your money site and click on that.

That will drive referral traffic in from social media or web 2 sites, which it looks great in Google's eyes especially if you've got your site connected to analytics because you'll see referral traffic coming in and that's a great ranking signal for Google. That's something else that you can do if you have access to crowd search, that's the best way to do it. Which reminds me, that's why guys I've got a … Adam if you can find the post about referral traffic that I just pushed it on our blog last week I think it was.

Adam: Okay.

Bradley: Then we'll drop that up here and tag Carlos when you drop it. There's a post where I did about how to use crowd search for referral traffic, for videos, but it works just as the same for websites. I've had a lot of really, really good results from that guys. It's not an instant result. It's not something that you could put into place tonight and 3 days later your page is going to be ranked.

You have to let it run, you have to let it run with conservative values, in other words your search and click number is low. You've got to keep it low but just keep it steady. Over in the course of a few weeks, you'll see a significant jump and then it sticks. I've had some really good, excuse me, really good results with both videos and local sites that way.

Free Grader & Fixing Meta Keyword Issues

Second question, I ran freegrader.com on my domain and it failed. I can tell you without even looking at this site I wouldn't believe a word that damn thing tells you. Free graders, should I click on it? I don't know, I'm afraid to.

Adam: No, yeah, it's just a …

Bradley: It's probably full of shit to be honest with you. Just to put it nicely Carlos, it's probably full of shit. I wouldn't, I don't ever trust any of these things. Just like the [EO test EO 00:24:19] plugin will give you scoring, what is it, the green, the yellow, and the red indicators?

Adam: Right.

Bradley: Don't ever follow that or you'll be over optimized. Don't don't follow that stuff. If you're one of our students you should know how to optimize onsite by now anyways, if you don't, just ask, and we'll answer.

Hernan: Sorry, but most of these tools like we have a couple then you have the, shit, I don't remember the name, well you have a ton of these SEO, onsite SEO tools, that they are you know, optimizing websites based on keywords. That's exactly what we're not doing.

Bradley: That's right. They're junk man, they are, they're junk.

Hernan: Yeah, if you want to optimize like a couple of years ago, go ahead. It will most likely tell you to over optimized your website. Because even Yoast, I don't know why they haven't updated that, because Yoast is a hell of a plugin. They haven't updated that. They have added Schema, and Rich Mark-Up, and whatnot, but they haven't updated that meter which will tell you put your keyword in the title, put your keyword [on H1 00:25:26].

Bradley: Which is absolutely wrong.

Chris: That's right.

Hernan: Right.

Bradley: If you were to turn all your posts, all the green lights on and the Yoast plugin, on Yoast you're over optimized, period. There's no question. I don't use any of those page graders at all. What I look for is keyword density based on the entire page not just the content on the page. You can do that using a free tool called, seocentro.com, right here. I use this tool all the time. It's free.

You go over here to keyword density right here, you enter your page URL, fill out the Captcha, and hit submit. It will show you the page, or the keyword density of a page, which includes the entire page not just the content body. That will include keywords in alt text. It will look at the text inside of alt text in images. It will look in your side bar. It will look in your footer, your widget area, all of that, and will analyze the page based on that.

Adam: Yeah.

Bradley: It's free. What you want to with that is you want to stick with the singular terms. If we ran it and, we've going to move on, but if you run an analysis of a page, it's going to show you singular terms, singular keywords. It's going to show 2-word terms and 3-word terms. The parameters that you want to stay within, and these can be bent slightly, okay guys? These are just kind of rules of thumb, but you want to stay with 2% on singular terms, 1% with 2-word terms and .2% with 3-word terms. Okay?

Hernan: It's just a caveat of what we just said unless you're doing foreign, unless you're doing foreign SEO, then yeah, you want to go ahead with Yoast, put it in all rings because it doesn't really matter.

Requesting Additional Client Budget

Bradley: All right Paul says when are you going to give us something on Twitter SEO? November 23rd, Paul, Monday, November 23rd. Estelle says most of the services I use to rank my client's websites are subscription based so that means that I need to keep paying them every month to maintain my rankings. However, I noticed that when I start working on a new clients site the first 4-6 months ranking skyrocket, but then reach a plateau.

My problem is that I don't have anymore budget to create more link, and now I need to tell my clients that if they want a rank higher they need to invest more money. What would the solution be to avoid that kind of situation? Okay, solution number 1 ask for more money upfront. Okay seriously raise your prices Estelle, that's got to be solution number 1.

If you're dealing with people that are … If you're dealing with the wrong type of business they're going to always be resistant to spending money on their marketing because a lot of small businesses look at marketing as an expense and not as an investment. That's why they will remain to be very small businesses, because they don't look at it the right way.

When you're dealing with businesses that get it, they're willing to spend more money on their marketing because it's an investment that will give them a return on investments. I don't know what your client situation is like Estelle, I have no idea. I know from firsthand experience and working in the contracting industry, mainly home services industry for most of SEO career, I've dealt with a lot of contractors that don't want to spend money. They look at it as an expense.

When you start to realize … Those types of clients are always going to be the ones that give you the most shit. They're going to be the hardest time. They're going to be the ones that are always tracking every single penny and dollar being spent and questioning what you're doing all the time. They're just a pain in the ass.

It's better to go with clients that are a little bit bigger, that have bigger marketing budgets. A lot of clients that I like to go after are clients that are doing pay-per-click advertising. Then I approach them for SEO because I know that they're willing to spend money to bring, you know, leads in the door. Again, number 1 would be to charge more money.

If you're running out of money in your budget then you're not charging enough or you're paying too much for services that are ineffective which could be part of it. The other part of that is what would the solution be, is start investing in your own infrastructure. That's one of the key factors.
If you're always outsourcing work to like you're link building and that sort of thing, you're always going to have to pay a portion of whatever you're charging the client out. That can offset, like you said, to the point you're not making any money. Then you're still managing the project but you're not making any money. You're still accountable to your clients.

One of the best things that you can do is start to build your own infrastructure. Hire your own link building team that work directly for you because then you'll get a much … You're dollars will go a lot further because, if you have an in house link building team, you have your own servers for GSA, whatever. You would build your own PBN networks.

Whatever it is, just start investing in your own infrastructure, your own teams so then instead of paying an outsourcing service you're paying your own team which you'll get a hell of a lot more bang for your buck, so to speak. What do you think Hernan?

Hernan: I think that at some point you just don't want to keep throwing money at a project. I get Estelle, and I totally agree with you, Bradley. I would suggest to Estelle that you tighten up your own site. Because at that point you probably have a lot of link juice floating on your website.
Sometimes we forget about that, so if you'll tighten up the onsite, for one, and the other side you can still build, you can still make more posts on your blogs to push those pages that are ranking on bottom page 1 or page 2, to push them higher. [crosstalk 00:31:15] …

Bradley: Hernan, I didn't mean to interrupt but I think, if I remember correctly, Estelle also posted in the IFTTT SEO Academy Group, the Facebook group, about something similar. I think her issue is that, a lot of her clients, she doesn't have access to their websites, so all she's doing pretty much is off-page stuff.

I think Marco replied to you Estelle about how you could set up your own assets and then redirect those assets to client assets, so that you have more control. Ultimately you'd have control over the asset in case the client decides they don't need you anymore, you can maintain all the work that you've put in.

Hernan: Yeah, well that's a good point. If that's the case then no, what I was saying won't work. I would suggest Estelle that you either ask access, which is what I would do. Either work, because you need to work on the onsite. It's like 80% of the SEO right now. It's not like 50/50 or not even 60/40. It's like 80%. If you're just building …

On the other hand, if you're just building links, then you should charge for link packages, not SEO, not rankings, not results, just link packages. I will build a IFTTT network. I will build X amount of web 2.0s. I will build a PBN for you, whatever. If you're not asking for access, you're kind of limping with your SEO because 80% of the SEOs right now is onsite.

You're being a accountable, as Bradley was saying, so you cannot work without the proper tools. If that's the way you want to handle it, that's fine. I would suggest that you might grade your business from providing SEO services to providing link-building services, which are less accountable, and you don't need access to do that.

Bradley: That's right. Yeah, there's no way in hell I would ever promise, or give an expectation of rankings, if all I was doing was building links. If I had no control over the on-page of the site that I was building links to, there's no way that I would make any sort of promises as to what type of results they could expect, because, like Hernan said, 80% of it is …

If you have a site with proper on-page, you can rank it with a fraction of the off-page that it takes. On some sites, if the on-page isn't done properly, it doesn't matter how much off-page you throw at it, it's still not going to rank, depending on the level of competition and the space that you're working in.

Hernan: Yeah, definitely. Well for most, if you're doing onsite SEO for local clients, and you throw an IFTTT network at the onsite, it's died. Then you will rank it.

Bradley: Yup.

Marco: When I saw her first comment in the IFTTT SEO Facebook Group, it kind of surprised me because I remember that she worked in the French market. She has IFTTT working on her client's sites. She said it's not ranking.

I immediately went, “Well how's your on-page.” That's when she said, “Well I don't control the on-page.” Like you said, if you can't control the on-page, then no matter what you do, that IFTTT ranking is just powering up itself.

Bradley: That's right.

Marco: It's not really doing anything for the website.

Bradley: Yeah.

Marco: You have to be in control of that website and the on-page SEO or else you build a blank sub-domain or you just take it out. Take it out of step and build your own asset, control it.

Bradley: Which I recommend you do anyways going forward is build your own asset. You can always redirect your own asset to clients that are paying you. That way they're benefiting from the work that you've done while they're paying you. The moment they stop paying you, you can remove redirects and now you've reclaimed all of the work that you've done and kept it for yourself which in my opinion is only fair.

I've had in my career where I've done work for, and most of you probably have too, where you've found a client, built him a site, rank their site, then they decided that they don't need you anymore because oh, how easy it is to forget what it was like before they had traffic. Once you've done all the work, and they've decide they don't need you anymore, because they're already at number 1, now you're screwed.

You just lost out on all that work that you did. You don't get to receive a recurring revenue from it which is why, if you build your own assets, that you can use to power up other people's assets, when they're paying you, and then if they decide to stop paying you, you just reclaim them. Then you can redirect it to the next paying client that you find. Keep control of your business.

Pitfalls in Having Too Many Backlinks Too Soon

Wow, we're not even making a dent in these. We've got to get rolling. Rick says, “Thanks for your help and time folks. Let's say you got a new site. You're planning to use IFTTT network, Syndwire, and press releases, is there a danger of getting too many back-links too soon and too frequently? Should these methods be staggered?”

Yeah, there is. It just depends. Can you go too hard too fast? Yes, I would recommend that you start off with your IFTTT networks and set up a consistent blog posting schedule because that's going to be one of the most key or critical factors of ranking. Today it's freshness of content and regular updates, so do that.

Then press releases, that's perfectly normal to do a press release especially with new sites because you're announcing the new site. That'll give it a flood of links back to your site which is great, because that'll pillow the site a bit, make it more receptive or less vulnerable to over-optimization when you start building additional links to the site.

Then lastly, I wouldn't use, again, my personal preference guys, I don't use Syndwire as tier-1 links to my money sites, don't do it. I don't do it because you use spun content and it's shitty. Don't do it. Use them for 2nd-tier links to your IFTTT networks or your press releases.

If you've got a local site and you're building citations, business directory listings, then you can use Syndwire to boost those as well. I don't recommend that you use Syndwire direct to your money site. For videos it's fine, but for money sites I wouldn't do it because you're using spun content guys. It's going to look crappy.

Just start off like I said with networks, start consistent blog-posting schedule. Guys, that's one of the most critical components of it to work is consistency. Then press releases are always good. I can't say enough about doing press releases properly. Then use [Send Wire 00:37:51] to boost all of those.

Issues with Some Tumblr Templates and Other Web 2.0s in IFTTT Networks

Ed Ryan says, “Hey, guys, having a couple small problems with my first network. Tumblr does not let me enter the HTML into the description area under the title to add our links to the Google Plus About Page in our blogger account. Everything else went fine until I tried adding the break-tag.”
Ed there are some themes, Tumblr themes, that won't allow that. There are lots that do. We build dozens of networks per week now with our team. They have no problem. I would try to swap out the Tumblr theme because it should work there.

Again, we have networks built all the time. We don't have any problems with it. I'm sure that it's probably a particular theme that you're using in Tumblr that doesn't allow it. You can find plenty of them that do. Also, if you have a specific issue with a Tumblr property, I would reach out to Tumblr support if that's the case. Again, I think you're just probably using a theme that doesn't allow that.
WordPress is giving me problems with verifying my WordPress site for Gravatar, Blogger, Google Plus, and YouTube, went just fine. Ed Ryan, please go check the updates section of the IFTTT SEO Academy training.

I specifically have 2 update posts in there addressing the Gravatar issue. Don't try to do any verified services in Gravatar anymore. Just add everything as websites. That's covered inside the update section. All right, there's 2 posts in there about that specifically.

Removing Links Safely in PBNs

Kevin says, “I've linked my site from my niche relevant PBN that has a trust flow of 12 and citation flow of 35. Should I remove that link from my money site? If so, how do I remove the link safely?” No, not necessarily if it's niche relevant. Just because the trust flow and citation flow is a bit of an imbalance there, I wouldn't remove it.

Hernan: What about the trust flow?

Bradley: They said the trust flow is 12, but the citation [crosstalk 00:39:52] …

Hernan: Yeah, take it out.

Bradley: Yeah, bump up the trust flow on the PBN site for that particular post. You can do that. Just go purchase a couple high trust-flow safe links or something and point them to your PBN. That will boost the trust flow up.

Again, the most important phrase in this whole question here guys is niche relevant. You said niche relevant, then I would absolutely leave the link. Don't worry about those metrics so much as long as it's niche relevant. You can always boost those metrics.

Backlinks in Majestic

All right, Kevin's next question. “I forgot to ask. I have noticed in Majestic that it shows back-links that were deleted at some point in time. Does Majestic still count those back-links trust flow, or citation flow, against the money site even though the back-link has been deleted?

No, Kevin it doesn't. There's 2 different options in Majestic. There's the historic index and the fresh index. If you're using the fresh index, it's only going to show you what's live and not stuff that's been deleted as far as what's being counted for trust flow citation flow.

Also on your back-links page, inside of Majestic, there's a button that says to hide or show deleted back-links. I always click the hide button because why the hell do I want to look at deleted back-links? I could care less about them. You can filter those out inside of Majestic just by clicking a button at the top of that back-link's page.

Also, if you're using the fresh index, it's not going to show. If you use historic it's going to show. I don't never look at the historic index, really. I do, but not for the purposes of determining the quality of what the current state of a domain is.

Trust Flow in Weebly Sites

Next question, “One more thing, do Weebly sites pass trust flow and link juice even though they are not indexed unless you pay for a premium account?” Kevin, I don't know who told you that. Unless Weebly changed something recently, that's bullshit.

Weebly's site will index without being a paid account. Unless something changed, like I said, within the last couple of weeks, Weebly sites, I've onlygot one paid Weebly site out of probably hundreds of them. All of mine are indexed just fine.

Hernan: Yup, and have in mind Kevin that I don't know with trust flow, but link juice, you do not need a link to be indexed to pass link juice.

Bradley: That's right.

Hernan: You will pass probably less link juice. It will pass link juice nonetheless, because …

Bradley: Even if it's not indexed.

Marco: That's right.

Adam: Yeah, that's right.

Hernan: Because you can have the tag knowing that's do-follow which will pass link juice of course. I have had some great results with PBN that are no index. Keep that in mind. I don't know about trust flow though. I don't know. Maybe we'll need to investigate that.

Bradley: On another note, I've heard that a fresh Weebly gains, like a trust flow increase of 5 simply by being indexed, are there any other web tools that give you … ? Again, I don't know where you're reading this stuff Kevin. I think that's all like you just said, is that's all just hocus-pocus? I think that's all a bunch of bullshit to be honest with you.

Marco: Kevin, my advice to Kevin would be just test.

Bradley: Yeah.

Marco: Just test it. Set up a Weebly. Try to get it indexed. Get a free one. Go get an indexed or whatever you have to get it indexed. It will get indexed. Then check the trust flow metrics.

Hernan: You know if you search for a site called Weebly Operator, it has 17 million results. It's probably indexing.

Bradley: Yeah, again, as far as getting a trust flow boost just from being indexed, I don't think that's part of the trust flow equation. Again, I haven't tested that specifically. I can't imagine why that would give a boost just for being indexed because trust flow is based upon links and relevant content and the authority of the sites that those links are coming from.

It's not something that I could imagine just having a link indexed, or page indexed is going to get a trust flow boost. Again, haven't tested it, so I don't know for sure, but that would be my thoughts.

Hernan: We might need to check with Majestic guys if the indexing, it's another metric on their algorithm, another factor on their algorithm too.

Marco: It may be.

Chris: It may be.

Hernan: It might be. I don't know.

Done For You Link Building Service

Bradley: Daryl says question for you about the Done-For-You link building service. I'd like to purchase a 2-tiered package by I am unsure how I should treat the anchor text. Would it create an issue for my money site if the third tier on the chain had multiple exact-match anchors for my money keyword and all the links that led back to my money site were default?

Yes, Daryl, it totally would cause problems. You don't want to do that guys. The only time you should have exact-match anchor text, which you should use very sparingly, is on tier 1. That's it. Even then, again, very sparingly, man, you can rank, guys, with all on-page now.

You still need links, but you can rank with just brand terms and naked URLs now if your on-page is correct. Do not use exact-match anchors for tier-2 or tier-3. Don't do it. Use more broad, very broad keywords, generics or URL anchors.

Now it does make sense at times to use the brand term, the brand name, as an anchor when linking to the tier-1 branded IFTTT properties. In other words, in your tier-2 links, using brand terms as anchors to link to your tier-1 IFTTT properties, why?

Because it's an extension of the brand. As far as any type of keyword anchors for tier-2 and beyond, always go with very broad, very general keywords within the same theme, the same keyword set. Also use generics and naked URLs. That's all you need to do.

Let's see. [inaudible 00:45:42] site, all the links in the chain are do-follow is there any chance I can over-optimize for the term pink underwear? Yeah, because remember guys, that's exactly why. Remember keyword relevancy passes through do-follow links. It just doesn't make sense to have exact match anchors 2 or 3 tiers out. It just doesn't make sense because it's not close enough proximity to the main source, your main target.

Think of it like a funnel guys. At the top of the funnel it's wide. That would be your very broad or generic terms. As you get closer at the bottom of the funnel, the output, the spout, where it spits out, that's your money site. As you get further along toward the money site your keywords should become more concentrated or more exact if that makes sense.

You start broad and you continue, as Tier-3 it would be very broad or generic, or generic and URL only. Then tier-2 it would be, again, very broad URLs, a few generics, and then on tier-1, and possibly some brand terms in there.

Then on tier-1 it could be mostly brand and URL, but some exact-match anchors and some broad-match anchors as well. Hopefully that makes sense. Daryl, you're in the Master Mind. Bring that question up tomorrow. We will cover that more in-depth if you'd like with some examples.

Network Crusade Plus PBNs in IFTTT Networks

Florian has a question from last Hump Day Hangout. I'm a member of Network Crusade, our product from [Gregory Ortiz 00:47:09], inside this tool we have the ability to share PBNs between members and post on each other's PBNs. I would like to suggest an idea.

What about creating a PBN group on Network Crusader only for Semantic Mastery community and add the condition that in order to enter the PBN group your PBNs have the following requirements: 15 DA, 15 trust flow with a branded IFTTT network which meets the SM standard.

It could be pretty massive and effective. Let me know what you think guys. That's not a bad idea because it would be like crowd sourcing an actual PBN network. I still would only recommend that it would be used for tier-2 links though.

Hernan: It's kind of Fight Back network.

Bradley: Yeah, very much like Fight Back network.

Hernan: My suggestion would be I don't think that we have time to manage it, so it should be a private initiative. My main point would be keep it private.

Bradley: Yeah.

Hernan: If they're really out there like these kind of tools like Network Crusader or Fight Back Network, they tend to go out with their networks. The more private you keep them, the better.

Bradley: Yeah, Florian, I would say that's not a bad idea. Like Hernan said, it's not something that we're probably going to get involved in. We could maybe help you to promote it a bit internally to our members or something if you were to organize something like that. I'm sure it could be useful.

Florian, step 1, joint he Master Mind, dammit, because that would be something that we would probably keep in the Master Mind alone. Obviously, because that's where the more series, the people that are willing to pay attention to detail. Do you know what I mean? That's all I'm saying, not that you guys outside of the Master Mind wouldn't, but I think that would be something that we would probably keep a little bit more private like Hernan just mentioned.

That would be something, a project, that could be spearheaded within the Master Mind. I'm not sure. We'd have to discuss it further. Get into the Master Mind and bring it up and we'll talk about it further. Okay, where is the meme? Where is the meme? That's you Adam, but I'm waiting for Wayne's. There it is.

Adam: No, that's Kevin.

Multiple Subdomains for Multiple Locations in a City

Bradley: That's Kevin. Plus one that. All right, sorry, I got off track here. Let's see. What's next? Jason's here. I haven't seen him in a while. Okay, keep going, keep going. Michael says, “If I'm using sub-domains to cover multiple locations in a city, should I create the links to those sub-domains from the root domain site or should they be siloed?

Michael, I wouldn't use multiple sub-domains … Okay, multiple locations in a city. Yeah, I guess you could do that. It depends on the situation. Usually I do a sub-domain per city. If you had multiple locations within one city, it could make sense to do that. Although I would almost put everything on just one city site and have location pages because it would be easier to manage.

It just depends on the situation Michael. I don't know specifics on your situation. Should I create links to those sub-domains from the root domain site? Should they be siloed? You can. You totally can. If you have the root domain, you could use that as just a directory index site.

In other words, you have some general information about the business. Then you have the location's page which would link out to each one of the individual locations and maybe have the name, address, phone number for each one of them in the link over to each one of the sub-domain sites. You certainly can do that. That wouldn't hurt anything.

Just make sure that all your link-building activity is all done to the sub-domains individually and not to the root. What you're trying to do is avoid the root ever catching a penalty because then it will pull all your sub-domains and everything attached to that domain down. You can still use the root, don't get me wrong, I just wouldn't do any link-building activity to it.

Should they be siloed? Yeah, it just depends. Again, Michael, for so many local sites, silos are overkill. They're not needed. I think there's just too much information out on the web right now that you must have siloed websites. I can't tell you how many people approach us with these incredibly complex diagrams of how they're going to silo out their local brick layer website. It's like, “Holy S.”

They put 5 hours into drawing a diagrams for a siloed site for a brick layer when all you need is pretty much a 1-page site. I just say, should they be siloed? If you're in a very competitive niche, you're probably going to need to do that. If you're not in so much of a competitive niche, you most likely don't need to do it. You could just have a flat site. In other words, just single individual pages on the site targeting the key words.

Keith Goodwin on a new silo structure. Would you change existing setups or just leave them as is? I don't know what you mean entirely, Keith. On new silo structure, change existing setups or leave them as is? It depends, without knowing …

Adam: He's talking about with the reference to what you were saying about having sites where you would have a really close keyword association.

Bradley: Oh, okay.

Adam: [crosstalk 00:52:31] silos, because he posted that when we were talking about answering that question. He's saying would you go back and change those if they were already set up?

Marco: That's a great question.

Bradley: Keith, one of the easiest things you can do in that situation, is just go to the individual pages or posts, depending on how it was set up, that are the supporting articles, that are closely related terms to the top-level page, and just set the canonical to point to the top-level page. That's the easiest way to fix that.

Guys, if you have older silo structures where you did that, and you're worried about now there being too much similar content within the silo, just go set the canonical to point to the silo heading. All that's going to do is it's going to tell, you're telling Google, based on the canonical setting, that, “Hey, look this content is very similar to this content over here. Give all the credit for this to that other page that I'm pointing to.” Does that make sense?

Essentially you're telling Google, “Hey, look, we understand this page is very similar in its content to this other page here, so I want to pass all the credit to over here.” That is totally 100% Google approved way to do that. Just Google if it you want. Search Google canonical settings or something like that. You'll see plenty of documentation from Google themselves about how to do that.

All right we're almost out of time. We'll answer just a couple more really quick. Let's see Wayne, I was waiting for a meme. I haven't seen it yet. There he is. That's great. Joe Newel says build your own assets. That's what Joe's talking about, build your own assets, end of story, plus one on that. I'll give it another one if I could.

Setting Up Your Assets and Redirecting to Client Domains

Keith says, “Is there a post on how to set up your asset and then redirect your clients domain, as discussed earlier?” Keith it's in the Master Mind. Again, we've got a Master Mind webinar tomorrow. We can cover that again during the webinar tomorrow. If you have any questions, we'll be happy to answer them then. Used the same one you did in the training, let's see, I did [inaudible 00:54:35]. What did he use?

Adam: That's fine. He was just talking about the stuff we were talking about earlier that you answered his question.

Bradley: Okay. All right, I think we're done. We've got to wrap it up.

Adam: Yeah.

Bradley: Cool, all right guys. Well thanks everybody for being here. We'll be able to see Master Class members in just about 5 minutes.

Adam: Holy crap, Wayne, that is disturbing.

Chris: Nice.

Adam: All right, guys, see you guys.

Bradley: We'll see you all [crosstalk 00:55:06].

Chris: All right, then.

Bradley: Bye.

Marco: Bye.

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