Tracy S. Morris

Quirky Mysteries, Screwball Fantasy and Sassy History

Monday Musing: Blogging for Fun and Profit Part 6– Backlinks, Spam and the differences between the Two

Written By: Tracy - May• 31•11

Sorry this is being posted late. I thought I had it set up on auto post. Apparently I did not.

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As you start to release your posts in your blog, you will also start to generate comments. Some of these comments are legitimate, but you may also notice that for some of these comments, the writers never even read your post.

“Great article, it saved much time :)” – this was posted on my biography page.

“I enjoyed your post very much. You are very knowledgeable on the subjet matter.”—Replies like these are often left on my interview.

“I think this topic was just addressed on 60 minutes.” – Left on a post about one of my convention schedules.

Comments Can Be Spam

What is going on? If this is spam, it’s very odd spam.

In actuality, this type of spam is created by people who are trying to create back links to their own blogs. I mentioned in my last post that Google sticks your blog posts on a page based on the key words in the post. Back Links are a way that Google ranks your post’s popularity (and it’s placement on the page in the search string).

A post which has more links that will lead a reader back to it will help the blog rise in popularity on the search string. This is why your blog may have a high rate of spammers: Because some people are using less-than-ethical means to create these backlinks.

Bloggers have several methods of screening these types of posts. First they can set their blogs to “no follow.” This method tells Google not to count a blog post link in its rankings.  Bloggers can also look at each post and delete it themselves. They can rely on programs that delete known spam (wordpress has plugins, other social sites have other programs in place). Some bloggers also use programs such as Captcha, which require a commenter to type in a string of words or letters and numbers to prove that they are a real person.

Unfortunately, these types of spammy comments have been on the rise lately. The problem is that Google changed its search string algorithims in spring of 2011 so that informational sites such as Suite 101, Demand Studios and Hubpages receive lower rankings (and less money through ad revenue) than individual sites. As a result, many of the writers who once worked for these websites are now striking out on their own to make niche websites and DIY promoting them.

The result is many more spam comments as people try to build backlinks.

Backlinking

On the flip side of things, now that you know what backlinking is, you can also use it to raise the page ranking of your blog by making legitimate backlinks. The good news is that you can create legitimate back links through the course of ordinary blog promotion. The key is to make your back links legitimate rather than spammy. In other words, don’t be that guy.

Here are some good examples on how to make legitimate back links for your blog:

You and a group of your blogging friends can links pages on your websites and link to one another’s blogs.

  • Every time you leave a legitimate comment on someone else’s blog, you can link back to your own blog.
  • Leave your website information with every convention you attend in order to link you website to theirs.
  • Link your blog whenever you participate in a blog tour.
  • Keep an eye out for posts on the internet where someone asks for book recommendations. Add a link whenever a request is made.
  • For Individual posts within your blog, you can create links through link-building sites such as infopirate or Xoomba. These will help build the profile of your individual blog pages for going after the casual web surfer.

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