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The Blogging Institute

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The Blogging Institute This eBook Is Brought To You By Alexis Kenne Dot Com This eBook Comes With Free Giveaways or Resale Rights, However You May Not Change The Contents In Any Way

“How To Build A Blog With 1000+ Subscribers”

LEGAL NOTICE The Publisher has strived to be as accurate and complete as possible in the creation of this report, notwithstanding the fact that he does not warrant or represent at any time that the contents within are accurate due to the rapidly changing nature of the Internet. While all attempts have been made to verify information provided in this publication, the Publisher assumes no responsibility for errors, omissions, or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein. Any perceived slights of specific persons, peoples, or organizations are unintentional. In practical advice books, like anything else in life, there are no guarantees of income made. Readers are cautioned to reply on their own judgment about their individual circumstances to act accordingly. This book is not intended for use as a source of legal, business, accounting or financial advice. All readers are advised to seek services of competent professionals in legal, business, accounting, and finance field. You are encouraged to print this book for easy reading. My name is Alexis Kenne and I’m the owner of TheBloggingInstitute.com . Over the last few months I’ve gone from Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute being a LOSER affiliate to finally starting on the path of becoming a SUPER AFFILIATE and Expert Blogger! I shared some of my experiences on my blog I quickly realized how important was a mailing list in an online business. I then did everything to learn in the shortest time possible to send a ton of free targeted traffic to my main site at HomeBusinessFirePower.com and to my blog plus by making some small split tweaks to my conversions (opt-in rates) I’ve also managed to capitalize on the amount of traffic I do get. More Traffic = More Opt-ins = More Sales If you are struggling to get traffic to your site and /or struggling to make money online then I can help. Check out my site for access to my free affiliate marketing success kit, or visit my blog for some of the hottest affiliate marketing and traffic driving tips.

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One last thing before you begin reading the rest of the guide, I actually offer a FREE 7 day ecourse on how to make money blogging. You can get access to it at theblogginginstitute.com

Additional Useful Links

My Facebook Fan Page My Twitter Page My Youtube Channel My Articles at ezinearticles My LinkedIn Account

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The Blogging Institute Table of Contents

The 4 Keys to Building a Popular Blog

6

Guest Blogging

9

Narrow Connections

18

Proitise Content

24

Dominate Search

35

Recommended Resources

53

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The 4 Keys to Building a Popular Blog I generally like to stay away from “boxing” certain tactics as the only ones you need in order to build a successful website. There are literally hundreds of ways to grow your audience, as many lists online will show you. Just because there are a lot of ways to do something though, it doesn't mean that you should try to focus on all of them, or even most of them. There is a lot of common advice out there which I rarely recommend, such as: • Commenting on other blogs • Building your Facebook fan page • Submitting articles to directories • Following all of the bloggers in your niche on Twitter These are all things which can help you to grow your blog, but in this report I'm not going to solely recommend a single one of them. It's not because they don't work, it's just that there are far better uses of your time. Though I get to work for myself, I'm still a very busy guy when it comes to my social life, hobbies, and working on other projects. I don't have all day to work on my blog, but thankfully you I don't need it. And neither do you. My minimalistic four-step approach to growing your blog is both simple and highly effective. The real four keys to becoming an A-list blogger are: 1. Guest Blogging 2. Narrowing Your Connections 3. Making Content Your Priority 4. Dominating Search Engines

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I didn't get lucky one day and find that these four things were working well for me. I proactively used them on multiple websites and had a lot of success doing so. I've also coached, one-on-one, dozens of bloggers who have used this quadrant strategy in order to have more blogging success than they ever thought possible. By focusing on just these four things, there are a lot of direct and indirect benefits to be had: • Guest Blogging    

Direct: Backlinks Direct: Traffic Indirect: Search engine traffic Indirect: Brand exposure

• Narrow Connections    

Indirect: Links from other blogs Indirect: More Facebook fans Indirect: More Twitter followers Indirect: Affiliates for your products

• Prioritise Content    

Direct: More value for your blog readers Indirect: More traffic from StumbleUpon Indirect: More traffic from Twitter Indirect: Links from other bloggers Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute • Dominate Search Engines    

Direct: Targeted website visitors Direct: More product sales Indirect: More blog subscribers Indirect: Stronger brand recognition

Hopefully you can start to see how just focusing on these four things, can have a massive affect on your overall blog-growth strategy. There's a reason it works for me time and time again. Let's look at this quadrant in more detail, shall we?

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Guest Blogging I try not to sound too egotistical when I say this, but I really have increased the use of guest posting as a marketing tactic, simply because I have had a lot of public success withit. I’ve been interviewed about marketing using guest posts over 10 times, I’m mentioned on the homepage of a guest posting community and I’ve written far more of them than I care to remember. Because of this, I feel I’m probably one of the best people to cover this subject in detail. If you’re wondering what guest posting is or why you should even care about it then you’ve been missing out. You’ve seriously been unaware about one of the best marketing tactics available today. Thankfully, you're reading this report so you have time to utilise this strategy before it is too late. Why Guest Blog? If you’re wondering about the “what’s?” or “why’s?” of guest blogging then they’re going to be covered here. To begin with, let’s explain what guest blogging actually is. In it’s simplest form, guest blogging is the exchange of content from one blogger to another, for a site which the author does not own. In essence, someone (you, perhaps?) writes content for another website and this act makes you a ‘guest blogger.’ If you’re wondering what you get in return with more specifics than the typical “exposure” response then let me give you a run-down: • Links - Links control the web. If you want rankings on Google, you need links. If you want authority in your niche, you need links. If you want traffic from other blogs, you need links. Guest blogging is a fairly easy way to get custom anchor-text, high Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute quality one way backlinks to your website. There are few other techniques so effective. • Traffic - There are millions of webmasters out there and they’re all competing for targeted eyeballs online. Guest blogging is not only a way to get one fundamental of the web – links – but also another fundamental: traffic. The difference between someone who makes money online and someone who doesn’t is generally because one has a website which gets traffic. It’s that important, and guest blogging provides it. • Subscribers – Not everything is about web spiders and the big G of course; the readers of a blog are more important than anything else. This, of course, is why so many bloggers care about their feed count. Subscribers are the life and soul of a blog and if you can get in front of an audience on another site, it’s likely that they’re going to subscribe to your feed. (More on this later). • Branding – Research suggests it takes someone eight views of a brand name or logo to have it stored in memory. On the web, your name and your blog are your brand, and guest blogging helps you get them out there in your industry. My own activities with guest blogging have sometimes found me on 3-4 sites all on the same day. This massively pushed my brand around the niche and put my website on the map. Guest blogging is a great deal for all parties involved. Blog owners win because they get excellent, free content for their site and bloggers win because they get more links and more subscribers on their blog. How to Find Sites If you’re going to guest blog on other websites in your niche to enjoy some of the benefits that guest blogging has to offer, then you need to actually find websites to write for. After guest posting consistently for over a year, I now have quite a few tactics for helping with this process.

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The Blogging Institute • Google Search – Google is always the place I start with my internet research because it gives quick, accurate results. Depending on what you know about your niche, you can use Google for two things. The first is simply to help you find sites in your industry by searching for things like “niche blog” (changing niche for your industry). Alternatively, you could search for things like “niche blogging” or “niche guest posts” to find sites that want your content. • Niche Browsing – Many sites in your industry will make it clear that they accept blog posts on their site. Therefore, all you have to do is simply browse around the top sites in your niche and see which one’s do. Look for text like “write for us,” “become an author” and “submit your article”. These are all indications the site wants guest Writing Publish-Worthy Posts Although bloggers who accept guest posts also ‘win’ because they get free content, they still want great content. On that same note, guest blogging has so many benefits because you get to show a new audience the kind of awesome content you’re capable of writing, not to slip in a link and hope to get hundreds of subscribers. The Basics The basics of all good blogging applies to guest blogging so because they’re so important, I thought I would jot down a few of them here: • Write content that is unique and hasn’t been used elsewhere previously • Break posts up with images, bullet points and headings • Write your best work. Blog posts to a blogger are like paintings to an artist. They’re your portfolio and show you off.

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The Blogging Institute • Keep the piece relevant to content the blogger has published in the past • Provide as much value as you can to the new audience you’re interacting with If you write good content for other sites, you’ll have your posts approved and you’ll receive the benefits that guest posting has to offer. If, however, you put in minimal effort and product subpar content, then you will have done nothing but waste your time. Even if your post gets published, nobody will take the time to check our your website and they certainly won’t subscribe for future updates. The Process The process that you go through with guest blogging very much depends on the website you are writing for. For example, in almost all cases, bloggers will say that they want to see your article idea before you get to work. However, these same bloggers will say that if you want an interview with them, send questions with the request so if the answer is “Yes, I’ll do it” then things get done. Based on this, I decided to send a number of guest posts without saying anything. I simply sent my content and said ‘I really hope you enjoy it’. Now, these were people that clearly accepted guest posts, but they were also people who said they wanted to know the idea before the article is written. This is usually just a measure so that the blogger doesn’t waste his time, but when I was writing these things so frequently, the only time being wasted with the process was mine. I don’t recommend you going ahead and relying on this, but it goes to show that people like to do business without much fuss. If you know your work is up to standard, you just might get away with this like I did. Otherwise, the process typically goes like this:

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The Blogging Institute • You find blogs accepting guest posts or contact those who you’re unsure about • You tell them what you would like to write about and see if they would be interested • They get back to you with any suggestions or thoughts • You write the article and make sure to include a link back to your website in the bottom • You send it to the author • They publish the article if you like it, and you receive the rewards As far as publishing time goes, I’ve had one blogger who published my post the next day and one who took almost four months for an article to go live. A handy rule to remember is that generally, the bigger the blog (in terms of subscribers), the longer the wait. Guest Blogging Examples I’m certainly not the only guest blogger in the world so there are lots of examples out there of its benefits. Some of the most prominent guest-bloggers (and people I count as friends) include Ali, Jade, Mary and Dirk. This means that I can give examples about each of the points mentioned earlier and show how things work out. Links As you know by now, guest posts give links to the authors website. These links in-turn send traffic which could then become subscribers to this persons blog. The links don’t just send direct traffic but they also help with search engine traffic. If you want more traffic from the likes of Google, Yahoo and Bing, you need more links.

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The image above shows a Yahoo backlink count of links to PluginID. The tool seems to be a bit ‘off’ lately as PluginID has around 15,000 backlinks but this screenshot should show proof that guest posting can get you a lot of links. Also highlighted in the image is an article that I did for ZenHabits. Traffic As I am working a little on getting the name of ViperChill out there, I have already written a few posts to both help people and build this audience. Notice how I don’t think of guest posting as just getting something in return, but also doing a good service to the readers of the blog I write for. Because of this promotion, I recently posted an article on Problogger about the lessons I’ve learned from blogging over the last 12 months.

The article ended up getting me almost 700 highly targeted visitors from the site which I believe resulted in around 200 feed subscribers through watching my stats closely around this time. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute This clearly shows more proof about the benefits of guest blogging and what 1-2 hours work can do for you. Guest Blogging Email Instead of just showing you the benefits of guest blogging, I also thought it would be useful if I provided a sample email of what I send to bloggers after I’ve written an article for them. Note that I send all of my posts in text (.txt) files because I send bloggers the HTML code of my post, and not just the text version. This allows us to keep links intact and make the post far easier to edit.

If you can’t read all of that text clearly then don’t worry too much about the specifics. Instead, the two most important tips I can give you when sending emails like this are simply: be friendly and to get to the point. Bloggers are busy and they don’t want you rambling about your life story but neither do they want you to be robotic, so be personal in there. As long as your content is good, you shouldn’t have to worry too much about this email. Getting the Most from Guest Blogging Everything I have told you so far has hopefully given you a clear understanding of what guest blogging is, how to get blogging opportunities and how much potential this ‘method’ Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute has. Before I leave you all to start getting in touch with bloggers in your niche, I want to share some tips from getting the most out of guest blogging. • Write Awesome Content – I know I covered this earlier but I believe it’s worth repeating due to how important this step is. Remember: even if you get your article onto the site of someone else, it doesn’t guarantee any results. The best way to make sure you reap the benefits of guest blogging is to write the best articles you can for other websites. This means that they’ll a) want you to write again and b) you’ll get traffic and then subscribers from their site. • Leave an Optimised Link in the Byline - Guest blogging has been around for a while, and there are hundreds of people who do it. The biggest mistake I see these people make, however, is that they just leave a normal link in the footer of the article to their site. While it’s obvious that you should leave a link to your own site in the bottom of your post, you can get more ‘use’ out of the link if you change the anchor text to something you want to rank for in Google. I’ve received thousands of visitors from this tactic and it means that the benefits of guest blogging on each site will be with me for a long time to come (search engine rankings). • Vary Where You Post – Generally, the way to maximise the benefits of guest blogging is to write for bigger blogs. If a site you write for has a large audience then that means there are more visitors who can click through to your website and subscribe to your feed. I have noticed a few people trying the guest blogging ‘tactic’ just on a few websites and constantly using the same ones. They had great results at first, but this quickly died down. If you keep writing for the same site, the people who want to subscribe will, and those who haven’t already probably won’t. I have wrote for sites with 200 subscribers and I’ve wrote for sites with 150,000 subscribers.

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The Blogging Institute I’ve enjoyed both and received the rewards for varying where I place my content. • Respond to Comments – Because guest blogging is about writing on relevant websites, it’s important to stay professional and friendly with the influencers in your niche that you interact with. Not only should you try to keep in email contact with the blogger you’re writing for, but respond to as many comments as you can once your guest post goes live. This will show the blogger (and their site readers) that you genuinely want to give people genuine advice on whatever it is you write about. • Make Subscribing Obvious – If you want people to subscribe to your blog after they click through to your site, at least make it easy for them. The amount of sites I go to and struggle to find how to subscribe to them is actually amazing. Remember that most of your visitors are probably not as web-savvy as you are so you need to make your RSS and email subscription options very clear. As you can see, I have mine in a bright yellow box at the top right of a page (for those who are web-savvy) and then sections in both the blog sidebar and single post footers for those who need a little push. • Have Excellent Content Waiting – People won’t judge you just by what you write on the site of someone else, but what you have waiting for them when they arrive. If visitors don’t like what they see and don’t feel like missing your content is missing out then they just won’t subscribe. For example, I once promoted my personal development site on an internet marketing blog (where I wrote about internet marketing) and as expected received links and traffic for doing so. However, I only gained about 20 subscribers from 500+ visitors because only a few people were interested in both topics. A lot of these are common sense suggestions, but I do see them being ignored on a daily basis. If you can write great content and stick to these tips to maximise your rewards, then you’re going to have a lot of success with guest blogging. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


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Narrow Your Connections The advice to 'narrow your connections' is usually the exact opposite to what most people will tell you to do. After all, it makes logical sense that if you can reach more people, you should be able to grow your blog by more followers. The flaw in this thinking is that it simply takes far too long to reach a lot of people individually. And, even if you could speak to every blog reader in your industry, the time you have to create strong connections is going to be minimal. Instead, what I prefer to do is create fewer, but stronger, connections. I like to build them with people who have large audiences I can potentially (ethically) tap into, and people I just generally seem to click with anyway. If I have completely different views to someone or don't enjoy what they write, I won't try to get in their “good books” just for the sake of a potential link one day. I made the mistake very recently to focus on too few connections, so watch out for that. After launching affiliateSkin, I sent review copies to some of the biggest bloggers in the world, with only a handful replying. I wasn't ignored by some people because we had never contacted before. I actually have no idea why some people ignored me, but they did. Some were people I've wrote articles for, helped with product launches, and even given interviews for their membership sites. That didn't seem to be good enough to even give a “sorry, I'm busy” response to my email. Through my own observations and experience, I've found it's better to try and connect with people who have a decent, but modestly sized audience, and enough time to communicate online. For example, when I first came across Pat Flynn, his blog had been going a year longer than mine and he had a solid 4,000 subscribers. I can't recall exactly how I came in contact with Pat, but from the first emails we exchanged it Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute seemed clear that we had a very similar focus, and neither of us took ourselves too seriously. After countless emails, Skype conversations and advice passed between us, Pat is someone I wouldn't hesitate to call a friend. I also wouldn't hesitate to promote any product that he's working on, or link to him in a free report I share to my 10,000+ subscribers ;). I've met quite a few more “Pat's” over the last year and now have some great connections in this space. Connections I don't believe I would have had if I had tried to broaden my networking horizons too far. Your job is simply to find and connect with the influencers in your industry. The influencers behind most blogs of course, are the writers. Look for people who seem to be active in social media spaces (Twitter, Facebook, etc.), have a decent-sized audience, and write on a similar topic to you. I would choose no less than five people to connect with and no more than ten. Once you have a list of people in your industry who would be worth getting to know, it's time to make the approach. When it comes to approaching people for the first time, you need to remember a few things: • Don't ask them for anything • Don't speak to them like they're some kind of guru (it feels strange) • Get to the point Influencers are generally far more interested in doing other things than replying to emails. This is a key reason as to why they're influencers in the first place. I'm not only speaking here from my own experiences of trying to make connections with others, but from experience where people tried to connect with me, and how they managed to get on my radar. Email interactions, in my opinion, are not the best way to begin communicating with someone. Instead of trying to get on a bloggers radar by annoying them through email, connect in a Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute way that they will love. This could mean stumbling their articles, linking to their blog posts, commenting on their articles and even retweeting them. Giving before you get applies here more than ever. Once you’ve been giving for a while then start to engage in more personal surroundings like email. Why This is So Important Although guest blogging was the number one way that I grew my personal development blog PluginID, it was not the number one way that I grew ViperChill. If I write a guest post for someone, I might receive 100 visitors to my blog and gain about 15 subscribers. Yet, if someone links to me naturally, interviews me, or mentions one of my posts they happen to like, the visitor to subscriber ratio is way higher. In other words, I would rather be mentioned on a popular blog than write for it. Once you see the effectiveness of mentions on other websites, you inhibit a drive which makes you want to work on getting more of them. After all, it makes sense that you would rather trust the recommendation of a friend (or website) directly, rather than have someone speaking on their behalf (a guest post). The major benefit of guest blogging over trying to get mentioned on other blogs is that generally, your time spent guest blogging is a lot more likely to result in a link. If you put the work in on creating a good article, then it’s likely to go live on the intended targets’ blog. You can’t be sure, however, that your engagement with other bloggers will result in them linking back to your website. Getting links from other bloggers, in my vast experience, is the easiest and most effective way to increase the number of people subscribing to your blog. You can increase your chances of getting links from other bloggers by creating these strong connections, as we've just discussed, but there are a few more things you should be focusing on.

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The Blogging Institute Write Incredible Content There are a lot of people who come to ViperChill, leave comments, and interact with me on a personal level. I would love to promote a few of them to help them grow but in all honesty (without trying to sound nasty) the content they produce just isn’t that great. The main reason for this is that it isn’t unique. If I recommend a site that people don’t get value from, my audience will start to lose trust in the links I share. That’s why I so frequently link to people like Tamar, Karol and Pat, because they write excellent content and it’s relevant to my audience. No matter how engaged and friendly you are with another blogger, they’re going to struggle to link to you if your content isn’t relevant, and it isn’t amazing. It’s pretty much a waste of time trying to get a cooking blog to link to your marketing website, and also a waste of time trying to get them to link to your guide on how to make toast, even if you do run a cooking site. Make sure you take care of this most important step first and foremost, and you’ll have a much greater chance of getting links from big blogs. Make Other People Care When I was 16, I received an email from Google Engineer Matt Cutts. Matt created what you may know as Google’s “safesearch filter” and is the head of their web-spam department. His blog actually has over 70,000 subscribers. In the email, he asked if I did any “shady or black hat tactics” because he wanted to link to me, but didn’t want to look bad for doing so. If my blog at the time had any sort of audience interaction or readership, Matt wouldn’t have needed to ask. Because my

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The Blogging Institute blog was so quiet, which I had in common with many of the bloggers who interact with me, he wasn’t totally comfortable with just linking to me, but instead wanted to speak to me first. Just because I like a post of yours and may want to link to it, like other bloggers I’ll have doubts whether this was a fluke post of yours, and whether people would be disappointed with your other posts if I was to send them your way. Sadly, we rarely have that much time to look around to determine a “trustworthy” site, so building an audience first is your best chance to do so. With so many blogs in the Make Money Online space, it’s only the ones with a fairly large audience that tend to catch my attention. Grow your readership and show potential linkers that you can build and sustain an audience, and they’re far more likely to send readers your way. Finally, this also works well because many people will link to you in the hope that you’ll link back one day. They’ll only care about this if you have a decent-sized readership. Show Me Who You Are This isn’t so much a rule myself or other bloggers have, but more of a feeling. If I don’t know anything about you (even just basic details such as your name or gender) it just feels weird to link to you. First of all, I don’t know what to call you when I do so — site names just aren’t personal. Secondly, I don’t know how to structure my sentence because I usually want to say he or she. Thirdly, I tend to wonder what people have to hide if they don’t want to reveal information about themselves online. I totally get anonymity, since I had a pseudo-name online until I was 18, but some small details like your first name and a picture won’t hurt you. I’ve also noticed that out of all the people I link to regularly, I know something specific about their life, or their character (usually through Twitter interactions). I know bloggers who I Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute don’t even interact with that are performers in the circus, trying to visit every country in the world, or able to speak six languages. If you can let me know through your blog or our interactions something unique and quirky about you, I’m far more likely to remember who you are. Though it may not be great for my brand, people often refer to me as the “young blogger” or “marketing wizz kid”. Neither are angles that I’m going for, but it’s clear that people pick this up from my work online, and it’s something they remember me by. What can I remember you by? If I can remember something, I’m more likely to link to you when it’s relevant to what I’m writing.

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Make Content Your Priority If most of your blogging time is not spent by focusing on your content, then you're on the wrong track. This isn't to say that things like having a clean design, networking on social media sites and following other sites in your niche aren't important. Because they are. All I'm saying is that the only reason anyone reads any blog, is because of the content it offers, so if producing brilliant content is not your main aim, then it should be. Because there are so many other sites in the internet marketing industry – and pretty much any niche these days – I knew that my content was the number one thing which would set me apart from the competition. It's what will set you apart from the other bloggers in your industry as well. The kind of content you should be writing, clearly depends on what niche you're writing in. Instead of just saying you should focus on your content, it would probably be better to say that you should focus on producing high-value content. Information that your audience loves. It's your job to find out exactly what this is in your industry. For some of you it may be in-depth articles, for some it may be quick, powerful posts, and for others it may be a humorous piece that others naturally want to share. The aim of your content is to not only be viewed as powerful by the person who reads it, but encourages others to pass it on to people who may also enjoy it. The high-value content you produce also needs to be viral. Some of the most popular articles on my site have received hundreds of backlinks, comments, and tweets. This wasn't just some lucky event, but something I consciously aimed to make happen. A list of some of my most popular articles include: Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Article Wordpress SEO: The Only Guide You Need. 28 Resources from My Internet Marketing Toolbox. How to Build Backlinks and Dominate Google. 21 Lessons I’ve Learned After 21 Years Alive. How I Wrote a $30,000 eBook (And You Can Too).

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The rest of this section is going to look at how I aim to write the most valuable and viral content that Ican, which hopefully helps you to do the same. One of the first lessons that newspaper journalists are taught is to structure their content so that the most important information is first, with the importance decreasing as you read through the piece. Pick up any newspaper around you and you’ll see that the first few sentences contain the most crucial elements of the event. This not only creates impact, but also allows editors to simply snip off the bottom paragraph of a story if they need space for other articles. As the final paragraph is the least important, their editing does not affect the article too much.

Your Headline Your headline, in my opinion, is by far the most important element of your article or blog post. It of course matters what you say after the headline, but only if you can actually get people to read your article. The job of your headline is simply to get people to read the first sentence of your post.

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The Blogging Institute Your headline doesn’t just need to be attractive to people who stop by your blog regularly. If you use Google Reader in a list format for example – like I do – then your headline determines whether myself or anyone else using the service will click on your listing to read the post. Similarly, if I see content posted on Facebook or retweeted on Twitter, that same headline will determine whether I click through to your website. The following advice is my take on how to create a headline that draws your readers in and helps your content go viral. Don’t tell me something I know: If your headline says something like “Why exercise is good for you” or “How to increase your feed subscribers” then I probably won’t read it. It gives me nothing but the expectation that I already know most of what the article is going to share. If you want someone to keep reading, you need them to feel like they’ll actually get value out of the time they’re going to spend doing so. Headline example: Printer Cartridges Are Expensive Challenge someones beliefs: One of my most popular posts on PluginID bore the title ‘Smoking is Good for you’. As everyone knows, there are many reasons why smoking is detrimental to your health, so this caused quite a stir and invoked the desire for people to continue reading. I followed up the title with a good twist in the article, which is important if you’re going to write your headline with such an angle. If you write an article – with the content to back it up – which tells me why “running is bad for you”, “people don’t read blogs anymore” or “[common tactic] no longer works”, I’m going to read the post. Humans love taking in new information, but we hate holding on to information which is incorrect, so challenging beliefs can be a very powerful to get eyeballs on your content.

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The Blogging Institute Headline example: Why Buying Another Printer is Cheaper Than Buying Ink Offer a hidden insight: This one is very common in the internet marketing space, with titles offering ‘keys’, ’secrets’ and ‘crucial aspects’ about different topics. I’ve used them myself in posts like this one on ‘The Secret to Growing Your Blog Twice as Fast with Half the Effort‘. This works so well because the title suggests that by reading the article, we’ll learn something we wouldn’t have known otherwise. A year or two ago I did this for a popular topic – how to increase feed subscribers – but in a way that was new and promised value. The title was ‘How to Increase RSS Subscribers (One Method You Probably Don’t Know About)’. Are you more likely to read that article than an article with the same title, but without the brackets? Headline example: The Real Reason Behind the High-Cost of Printer Cartridges Ask a question: If the question you ask is relevant and intriguing, people are going to read your post to see why you feel a certain way about something. Headlines with questions are also one of the best ways to get people to leave comments on your posts. The question automatically gives them something to say in response. Discussions start from questions, and this is a great way to get a conversation going in your community, especially if you make bold statements on a hot topic. There’s a great example of this kind of post at Copyblogger, where the author asks: Is Commenting on Blogs a Smart Traffic Strategy? [Link] Headline example: Do You Know Why Printer Ink is so Expensive? We Reveal the Truth

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The Blogging Institute I’ve received a lot of praise for the headlines I use in posts and I’ve been asked numerous times whether headline writing comes naturally to me. The answer is no, it doesn’t. I find inspiration from magazine covers, books, and other bloggers along with my own imagination. I also spend quite a lot of time on each title and it’s never something I just “throw out there.” Keep these ideas in mind, and you’ll soon be writing headlines which capture the attention of your audience and help your content go viral. Your Introduction If the job of your headline is to get people to read your introduction, then the job of your introduction is to get people to read further into the post. I believe that if your introduction is interesting and compelling enough, there’s a better chance that people will read your entire post, rather than just skimming through or ignoring it all together. I definitely have a lot of work to do on my own introductions, but do have some advice to share which I think can help you. List some interesting facts: I think the introduction for this section, regarding newspaper journalists, would have been interesting for most people. The information it shares must have some value, simply because I was able to remember this myself and then pass it on to you all. If you’ve naturally remembered a small nugget of information about a topic, there’s a good chance it’s interesting. If your facts are both interesting and relevant then it’s a great way to keep people hooked on what you’re saying. Offer a teaser for later in the post: If you could easily work out who the killer was at the start of an episode of CSI or figure out the plot of a movie after the first 5 minutes, we just wouldn’t watch them. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Smart television and movie producers “sprinkle” teasers throughout the length of the production to keep you hooked until the end where you find the answers. Promise your readers the answer to something you know they’ll care about, and make sure you stick to that promise, but only by offering small nuggets of information as they get towards the end of the post. Ask a question: Though questions can make very effective headlines, I personally don’t like to use them in this way. I prefer to use them in introductions. This way, you can both ask the question and answer it to offer value straight away, or you can use it as a hook. Similar to the last point, you could answer an intriguing question and then promise to answer it towards the end of the post. A good one from the book Made to Stick is the question, “What are the rings around the planet Saturn made of?” I’ll tell you at the end of this section . Use Reverse Psychology: I recommend you use this sparingly as too much of this tactic will annoy readers rather than encourage them to read your post. I used this tactic in my ‘most important blog post‘ article when I wrote “This blog post is quite long so you probably shouldn’t read it. To the 50% of visitors who are still with me, I’ll say now that less than 1% of you will get to the end so you may as well leave now.” I can imagine some people will take this too far and tell their readers in every post that they aren’t going to read it or they won’t enjoy it. Trust me, this tactic only works when you use it very, very sparingly. Think of some unique ways you can apply it and you’ll be on to a winner.

The Middle (The Meat of Your Content)

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The Blogging Institute The middle of your post is where you get across your main points, provide value to your readers, and offer lessons you hope that they take away from the article. For example, in my post on How I received over 900,000 visits from Google in 30 days, I began by proving my facts and claims in the headline. The meat of the post was exactly how I was able to do that. Although I mentioned this earlier, it’s very important that even if you have a great intro and a great

headline, the meat of your content must match up to those high standards. If you have extravagant headlines and can’t follow them up with great information, you’re just going to annoy readers and they probably won’t come back. In other words, if you’re going to offer some “secrets”, make sure they actually aren’t that well known. Be personal: One of the best ways to get your points across is to speak about personal experiences. On the most basic level, this means that you should be open to sharing both your failures and your successes. In my article about generating more blog post ideas, I was more than willing to share that I had been struggling to come up with things to write about. The reason that being personal works so well is because people can relate to what you’re saying. And, if people can relate to your content, they’re more likely to take your advice to heart and engage in your site. Don’t be afraid to use personal stories to help get your points across. It’s probably one of the most effective things you can do. Provide concrete evidence or examples: I’m lucky enough right now to be in an industry where people know enough about what I’ve achieved to trust what I say. However, that wasn’t always the case, especially when I was blogging about personal development. In order to get your point across and have your ideas stick, it’s good to have enough information to backup your points so that they really can’t be disputed. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute I often include images of ‘roadmaps’ when I talk about complicated subjects like my SEO strategy in big industries, and always try to include examples to help people create a picture in their mind of what I’m talking about. Evidence and examples might not help your post be more viral, but it will help solidify the ideas you’re trying to share. List your most important points first: I can’t remember where I first read this, but it makes total sense, and it’s something I’ve tried to implement in all of my posts. If you’re writing a list post or ever just listing points in a certain order, put the most unique and/or valuable at the top of the list. I believe the simple logic is that if you’re going to share points that are interesting and someone hasn’t heard before, they’re more likely to continue reading than if your initial points are just generic and nothing new. Keep Your message simple: In most cases, it’s best to keep the message you’re sharing simple. Or, if it is complex, at least keep it to one idea. The best blog posts tell you one thing and they tell it well. Seth Godin is a master at this. If there’s a key message that someone can take from your article that they understand fully, then they’re more likely to pass that message on. An example of this is my post on blogging partners, which was one of the most popular on the site. I said a lot about the subject, and covered it in-depth, but I really just stuck to one idea: If you want to grow your blog faster, find a blogging partner. “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” – Leonardo Da Vinci Your Summary and General Readability The summary of your post, in my opinion, is the least important aspect of your article. The hardest part of anything you write is to get people to read it, and then continue reading it until the end. Similar to what newspaper journalists learn, your best Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute information should be in the introduction and main sections of the article. If you rely on the summary for people to “get” what you’re trying to say then you’ve just wasted 80% of your writing, in most cases. Although the summary isn’t as important as the other sections, there are some recommended ways to use it. End with a powerful statement: The more articles I wrote, the more I found myself trying to end them with a message that left an impact on the reader. Movies do this all the time; if you’ve seen the end of Inception then you’ll know what I’m talking about. Just because you’ve got your main message out of the way, it doesn’t mean you should get lazy with your article. On two random guest posts that I’ve written, here were two of the endings: • “Those thousands of subscribers are waiting for you. You’ve just got to be ready for them.” from Copyblogger. • “Now, can you please promise me you’re going to share your value with the world? Because I can promise you, the world is waiting for it.” from TylerCruz.com Start a discussion: This will be the third time I’ve mentioned starting discussions and asking questions. I do so because I believe that conversation is really at the heart of blogs, and one of the main things that makes them so different from static sites. Often times, people will want to leave a comment, but they just aren’t quite sure which part of the post to share their thoughts on. You can use your summary to remind people of the most important points, and ask questions around any of them. This should help to get the comments flowing.

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The Blogging Institute Summarise Your Post: Although very obvious (it is called a summary, after-all), I couldn’t leave this point out of the post. A good suggestion for ending is to pick the most important advice you’ve shared and repeat it in bullet-form. Another option, where relevant, is to give people an action plan as to the steps to take next after reading your advice. My final suggestion, which is not directly related to making your content viral, would be to offer links to other relevant posts on your site. If people like what they’ve just read (and they probably did, if they made it to the end) then they’re likely going to want to see other articles you’ve written. Readability I generally break many rules when it comes to readability, but I still try to include the basics when I can. Even if you write the best posts in your industry, nobody is going to take the time to read them if you just list paragraph after paragraph without any formatting or line-breaks. There aren’t many things to remember when it comes to making your posts scannable. Here are a few things that I think you should: • Use Bullet Points: Just like I’m doing here, separate some lists into bullet form which not only breaks your post up into sections, but helps people skim your ideas if necessary • Use Section Headings: I often use H2 and H3 tags to define different sections of my posts. This way, I have a clear outline of my beginning, middle and end, so visitors can decide to read just one section or all of them combined. • Bold important sentences: If people are going to skim your posts, make it easier for them to take value from it by highlighting your most important points • Use clear sentences: Unless you’re trying to appeal to English literature graduates, you don’t need to use fancy words or complex-sentence structures. Keep your sentences simple. And

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The Blogging Institute remember: What you say is far more important than how you say it. • Break things up with images: Another good way to structure your content, without using headings, is to use relevant images to break things up. I like to have one in the introduction, as do many other bloggers, and more throughout the post, depending on the length of it Many of these suggestions are aimed towards people who aren’t going to take the time to read every word that you write, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The whole point is that they’re reading your content and enjoying it in their own way, and then sharing it if they like it. Many people will also skim an article first, and if it looks interesting, go back to read the whole thing in detail. To those of you who read this whole section, and want to know the answer to my question about Saturn, the rings are believed to be made out of dust-covered ice.

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Dominate Search Engines There are far more ways to build traffic than I could ever cover in this guide. The four keys to the A-List quadrant all either directly or indirectly give you the greatest chance to get the best traffic to your site, with the least effort. The fourth quarter of our quadrant, is to focus on search engine traffic. Search engine traffic takes a lot of time to grow, simply because search engines take time to “trust” a website and allow it to rank. Many people believe in what is known as the Google Sandbox, which temporarily holds back websites from rankings to determine whether they are quality, legitimate websites or not. This makes sense, as search engine's don't want spammers to be able to rank highly, or quickly. Though it does take a long time to grow, it's one of the best sources of traffic you can get to your site. In fact, with affiliate marketing, I make 90% of my living thanks to traffic from search engines. It's not only highly targeted, but it's also free once you've achieved rankings for your relevant keywords. There are two main parts to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): • On-site optimiation • Off-site optimisation As the names suggest, on-site optimisation is the things you can do to your website to help your rankings, and off-site is things you can do besides tweaking your site, to help with getting more search engine traffic. I'm going to begin this section by looking at on-site optimisation for your blog, which I will assume like 99% of blogs out there, is running Wordpress. Wordpress SEO (On-Site SEO) Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute For all the great things there are to be said about Wordpress, out-of-the-box SEO certainly isn’t one of its strong points. As I use the software so much and make a lot of my income thanks to search engine traffic, I have come to learn what works best in terms of optimising your Wordpress setup. Before I share my tips for getting more search traffic to your blog, I want to state that the following recommendations should be used with a little bit of caution. The majority of recommendations here are very obvious and totally fine, but there are others which some people may disagree with. Everything I share here has worked very well for me and the countless clients I have worked with, but I will mention on specific steps if any of them may be frowned upon by others. Now that I have the “don’t sue me” disclaimer out of the way, we can get onto the good stuff. Title Tags The title tag has long been thought of as the most important onsite factor in telling search engines what your site (or a page) is about. By default on older versions of Wordpress, post titles would display as “Blog Name >> Post Title”. As your homepage is probably already ranking for your site name, you’re not helping yourself by putting your site name at the start of your title. You don’t need to rank for it more than once. Instead of leaving things this way, I personally like to remove the blog name altogether. This isn’t just because I think it looks better, but because it works. A client I worked with last year received a massive boost in search traffic when we removed their brand name from title tags on their blog posts. To change your title tags, I recommend you install this awesome SEO plugin. Once installed, log into your Wordpress admin and go to Settings >> All in One SEO Pack. From there, I have entered the following: Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute • Home Title: Viral Marketing : ViperChill (This is the phrase I’m trying to get my site to rank for and a brand name) • Post Title: %post_title% • Page Title: %page_title% | %blog_title% Those are the main ones, and I recommend you tweak the rest to your preferred preferences. The post and homepage titles are the most important. Meta Tags When you search for a site in Google, you’ll see a snippet of content under the page link. To control this, you can customise your meta description tag for the page. Similarly, you can also add keywords to your tag to tell search engines what your site is about. I should mention that Google announced a few months ago they do not crawl the keywords tag anymore. A good few years ago the keywords used to be important as search engines had less ways to determine what a site is about. Now that technology is so advanced, search engines have better ways of determining rankings and relevance. I still like to put the keywords in there (for other search engines) and do this by enabling ‘dynamic’ keywords with the All in One SEO pack. As far as descriptions go, there is no ideal way to automate the process. The best descriptions are hand written, and the plugin Headspace will allow you to configure them for each individual post. Headspace also allows you to auto-fill a posts metadescription based on the description of your category so if you post a lot, that may be useful for you. Permalinks

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The Blogging Institute Permalinks are simply the URL’s for your posts. By default, post titles tend to look like viperchill.com/? p=38 but if you look at the URL for this post you will see http://www.viperchill.com/wordpress-seo/. I’ll let you decide which one you think looks better. Not only does this new format tell someone what your page is about before clicking on it, the words in the URL will also be highlighted in search engine results if your post is relevant to the search query. To change your permalinks, simply go to Settings >> Permalinks. I currently use the following format:

Some people like to have categories in there but I like to keep URL’s as short as possible. A friend pointed out that the quickest solution (in terms of querying your database) is to use /%post_id%/ %postname%/. I would only really recommend this if you have a massive site built on Wordpress, but it’s interesting to note. It’s best to do this on a fresh blog, but if you’re making this change on a new blog then make sure you install this redirection plugin. It will move your old URL’s properly and in a search engine friendly manner. Also remember to shorten the post slug when you are writing an article, as by default the URL will use all of the words in your title. Focus On a Keyphrase Unless you’re very into branding, it’s a good idea to try to optimise your site around a keyphrase that can send you search traffic. Most blogs end up getting the majority of links to their homepage, so it’s a good idea to try and leverage those links by getting search engine rankings for a relevant phrase.

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The Blogging Institute For Alexiskenne, I’m aiming to rank for the phrase ‘viral marketing’. Although it is fairly competitive, it has a decent search volume and it’s relevant to what this site is about: helping you build remarkable sites that others naturally want to share. The Google external keyword tool is a good place to start tosee which phrases are popular in your audience. Make sure you select ‘All Countries and Territories’ on the left and then ‘Exact match’ on the right hand side to get accurate results. Once you have this keyphrase, you can use it in: • The title tag for your homepage • The heading of your site • Your logo • As anchor text in links from other websites The first and last items on this list are going to be the most crucial to helping you achieve higher search engine rankings. Turn on Pingbacks One way to get more links to your site (which increase search engine rankings) is actually to link to other people. If you are regularly supporting a site, it’s very likely that they’re going to return the favour. Especially if they’re in the same industry. I recommend turning on the option in Wordpress (if it’s not already enabled) which notifies other blogs when you have linked to them. To do so, head on over to Settings >> Discussion, and choose the following options:

Use Alt Attributes Religiously I’ve noticed fairly recently how much emphasis Google seem to be putting the alt attribute when it comes to not only ranking images highly, but also ranking your posts highly as well. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Consider a search for the term ‘minimalist marketing’ and here is my site result.

The text minimalist-marketing, which I have highlighted, is actually not written anywhere on the page like that. Instead, it is the alt attribute for one of my images. Wordpress applies alt attributes to image automatically, but they are generated based on the file name. Therefore, if you save your images as “minimalist-marketing.jpg” or whatever your content is about, then Wordpress will automatically generate that text. The alt tag is a way to tell search engines what your images are actually about. Not only will it help you get more search traffic to your images, but I think it helps the overall rankings of a page, as well. Interlink Interlinking simply means that you link from your blog posts to other blog posts. For example, I sometimes recommend guest blogging as a great way to build your authority in your niche and will then link to my guide on guest blogging. I also use the anchor text of the search query I’m trying to rank for if it doesn’t making my writing look robotic. Not only is this useful in terms of SEO, but it also gives your readers more posts to read and thus increases your pageviews.

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WWW or Non-WWW On a lot of sites (and probably yours if this section title makes no sense), there are two ways to access them. For example, if you head on over to test.com, you will see it is both accessible at http://test.com and http://www.test.com. Try this on your own site and see if it is the same. By default, Wordpress handles this redirect for you, but it uses a 302 redirect. A 302 tells search engines the redirection is only temporary, but you really want to tell them it is permanent so that all of your link weight goes to one place. To do this, you need to implement a 301 redirect. You can choose which one you want Google to list in Google Webmaster Tools, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s still necessary to do this. Whether you want to choose the www version or the non-www version of your site is completely up to you. You will need to be able to edit your .htaccess file which can be found in the same folder that you installed Wordpress on your server. Here is how the code in mine looks: # Begin 301 RewriteEngine On RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www\.alexiskenne\.com [NC] RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.alexiskenne.com/$1 [L,R=301] # BEGIN WordPress <IfModule mod_rewrite.c> RewriteEngine On RewriteBase / RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d RewriteRule . /index.php [L] </IfModule> # END WordPress I do have other code in my .htaccess for specific redirects, but that is all you need to redirect your site from the non-www Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute version to the www version. Also, remember to change alexiskenne.com to whatever your domain name is. If you want to redirect from the www to the non-www (which I do on a few sites), then swap lines 3 and 4 with this: RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^alexiskenne\.com [NC] RewriteRule (.*) http:// alexiskenne.com/$1 [R=301,L] If that gives you any errors or doesn’t seem to do anything, make sure that your host allows you to edit the .htaccess file (most will). I’ve just shared some of the most common tips you’ll find online about optimising Wordpress, but now we’re going to go a bit deeper and share some slightly more advanced tactics. If you only do the above, then that’s a great start, but there are still areas you can improve upon. Noindex Archive, Category, Pagination or Tag Pages On ViperChill, I only use categories and I manually create my own sitemap, but I know that a lot of people have date based archives, categories, and tag pages. These might be great for usability, but for search engines, they’re really just lots of pages with links to your other pages. In other words, the search engines don’t need to crawl through all of them to find your blog posts. For that reason, I apply the Noindex option to my Archives and Tag pages, and do this by installed the All In One SEO Pack I mentioned earlier. There are settings in the admin panel to help you decide what you want to block. I recommend that you allow one of them to be followed (e.g. normal pagination, or categories) and then block the rest to “preserve” link juice. NoFollow Certain Pages I did say there may be some tactics that people frown upon in this post, and this is the first. The Nofollow attribute was first introduced by search engines to help stop spam on the web from ranking in search results. That’s why, by default, all links to commenters on your blog are automatically nofollowed. Nofollowing scuplting, as it is commonly referred, is simply about keeping and diverting link juice (link weight) to the pages Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute where you want it to go. For example, on every page on my site there is a link to the contact form. Does it really need to be a powerful page? Just linking to the page once is enough to have it indexed in Google, and that’s all that matters for a number of my pages. Similarly, I nofollow links to my about page, my category links and my RSS feed. This means that the ‘weight’ from backlinks I’m getting to my own post won’t be spread to those pages. A typical text link looks like this: <a href=”http://www. alexiskenne.com”>Alexis Kenne</a> To make it nofollow, you would change the link like so: <a href=http://www.alexiskenne.com” rel=”nofollow”> Alexis Kenne </a> Again, Google have recently mentioned that they frown upon this (in some circumstances — not most) so use it at your own risk. Nofollow Your Read More Link If you show full posts on your homepage then you don’t need to worry about this. If, however, you just show a snippet of content, then it’s likely you also have a “read more” or “continue..” link in there somewhere. As your post title already links to the page with perfect anchor text, there’s no need to give juice to the read more link which simply takes people to the same page. In your Theme Editor (Appearance >> Editor) open the relevant file (usually index.php), find the following text: <a href=”<?php the_permalink() ?>” Then simply add <a href=”<?php the_permalink() ?>” rel=”nofollow” That’s it. You must make sure you are changing the read more permalink, and not the permalink to your post titles. If you’re unsure which is which, then make sure you contact your theme author. There are too many examples for me to go through them all here. Turn Off Comment Pages Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Unless you receive hundreds of comments per post (or you’re really, really picky about page speed), there really is no need to have paginated comments on your site. Older versions of Wordpress never had this, but if you recently installed Wordpress 2.7 from scratch, you’ll find that paginated comments are the default option. These can be turned off in Settings >> Discussion and will ensure that your site doesn’t have tons of duplicate pages that are all showing very little unique content. Sign-Up to Google Webmaster Tools Google Webmaster Tools is a must-use service for anyone who cares about search engine traffic to their sites. Not only will it tell you which keyphrases you are ranking highly for in Google, but it will also notify you when your site has been hacked, or if you have any broken links. Sometimes you may find that another blogger has linked to you incorrectly and that a lot of visitors are landing on a 404 page. Because GWT makes you aware of this, you can redirect that page somewhere relevant to keep the link value and keep the visitors who are landing on your site. Building Backlinks (On-Site SEO) I have been studying SEO day and night since I was 16 and I’ve ranked on the first page of Google for some of the most competitive keyphrases in the world. Therefore, I like to think I know quite a bit about the topic and can provide some insights in this space. For those of you who don’t know why links are important, let me just say that if you want to get traffic from the major search engines, they’re crucial. Links from other sites to your site are basically a ‘vote’ that tell search engines you are trusted and you are a good resource for whatever your content is about. As I mentioned earlier, a large percentage of my income to affiliate sites is from traffic via Google, and the difference between ranking 2nd and ranking 1st can literally be thousands of dollars extra on my bottom line. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Instead of just telling you to do this or do that that many link building guides do, I also want to share a few principles that I believe are crucial in building a website that attracts thousands of high quality links. A few years ago you could take a robotic approach to SEO, but the web is now far too social to rely on old tactics to help your website rank higher. Build a Site for People I can’t remember who said this phrase but it’s one of my favourites: “search engines follow people.” Not only does following this motto steer you in the direction of build an honest, legitimate website, it’s also a very true way to get links to your site. Have you noticed how Wikipedia absolutely dominates Google search results? I don’t believe they should be ranking for 50% of the phrases that they do, but Jimmy Wales built a site for people. It is a resource that millions of people naturally want to use, and because of that, people talk about them. For a lot of competitive keyphrases online you’ll also find popular blogs, forums and niche social networks ranking highly. If you can get enough real people to care about what you’re doing, then you can’t go far wrong. When people talk about you online, links follow. Be Useful Pretty much every legitimate site on the Internet serves some useful purpose to it’s users. Facebook lets you keep in touch with friends and family. Google lets you find awesome websites. Digg lets you find news that you know hundreds of other people recommend. Youtube provides educational value, entertainment, product reviews and much more. These are some high profile examples, but there are literally millions of useful sites online. This blog helps people leave the rat race and make a living online. PluginID helped people be who they want to be and deal with the issues that come up on the path to get there. Ask yourself whether your site is helping people to fill a need. If it’s not, then why should people care about you? This Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute might not sound great but everyone active online in any space online is generally just thinking about what’s in it for them. If you can give people what they want, you can receive what you want. Check Competitors Backlinks When I talk about competitors, I simply mean people trying to rank for the same keywords / phrases as you in Google. For example, this site is “trying” to rank for the phrase viral marketing. I put trying in quotes as I’m only implementing a small number of these strategies as I’m not too bothered about ranking. If I wanted to find great sources of links though, I could simply see which sites are ranking well for the phrase and where their links are coming from. As an example, a site ranking 2nd for me right now is a page on Wilson Web. If I take that URL and do a link search in Yahoo (they shows more backlinks than Google) I can find link sources I can also use:

The operator I use in Yahoo is simply “link:pageurl -site:domain.com” (no quotes) obviously changing the parts in bold for the site that is actually ranking for your keyphrase. Check your competitors to see if there are freely available link sources that you can also get for your own site. After all, if they’re helping that site rank, they’ll probably help you. Leave Blog Comments Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Most blog comments are nofollowed (this means search engines aren’t supposed to give weight to the link, though I believe Yahoo and Bing still do) so they don’t provide much link juice directly. I like using blog comments as an indirect way to get links back to your site. For example, if I contact a big blogger out of the blue and ask them to link to my latest article, it’s probably not going to happen. Yet, if I’ve spent some time interacting with their community and leaving comments, it’s more likely that they will fulfil the request (as long as your resource is relevant, and awesome). Blog comments also drive visitors to your site, which goes back to the point of search engines following people. Check Flippa Auctions One of my favourite ways to find awesome sources for links is to check the Flippa marketplace. Flippa is a place for people to buy and sell websites and has a very interactive community. Even if you’re not looking to buy or sell sites though, it can be a great way to find links. If you take the time to look around, you’ll find a number of repeat sellers who are selling websites that have ranked well in Google very quickly. In some cases, these sites are ranking for phrases that bring in thousands of dollars, just in a few short months. Looking at these sites and finding where their backlinks are coming from has provided me with a lot of easy-to-duplicate tactics and links that Google clearly love. Write Awesome Content A few years ago you could write an awesome post and it would receive hundreds of links. Look at the trackbacks on old Copyblogger or Steve Pavlina posts and you’ll see what I’m talking about. With the introduction of Twitter and sites like StumbleUpon, people are more inclined to ’share’ sites, rather than link to them from their own blogs. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute The amount of links you can get for awesome content has definitely decreased, but by no means has it stopped. My post on Wordpress SEO picked up a lot of blog links and is getting new ones all the time. My friend Danny also noticed the decrease in bloggers linking out and started a mini-campaign about it. “Awesome” content means a lot of different things to different people. In terms of this site, it might be a great resource post. For a humor blog, it may be a funny image. For your Gadget blog, it may be announcing a new product before anyone else. If you know your niche well enough, you should know what people want. Participate on Social Bookmarking Sites I really don’t like this tactic if I’m honest, but I can’t deny that social bookmarking links are helping a number of my sites rank. Bookmarking sites like Delicious simply give people a place to store their favourite links an organisable archive, which is generally far more useful than your browsers bookmark bar. They’re also available from any computer anywhere in the world, so a lot of these sites have popped up due to their usefulness. Many of these sites offer dofollow links and custom anchor text, although they aren’t the best links in the world to pick up. You can automate the process using something like Bookmarking Demon (not an affiliate link – none of those here) or you can even pay someone on Digitalpoint to submit to hundreds of sites manually. To utilise this tactic in a more ethical manner, simply sign-up on a few sites you really want to use and bookmark your favourite links from around the web. Just don’t forget to link to your own site as well. Add Links to Your Forum Signatures Unlike blogs where you get nofollow links for contributing to the discussion, most forums allow you to have a (followed) link in your signature, every time you make a post. If you’re already Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute active on some communities online, see if you can put a link in your signature. I really don’t recommend you sign up on lots of sites just to get links, but if there are sites that you’re really interested in and want to participate, then link back to your site. Note that if you have 10,000 posts on a forum already and add a link there, that’s not going to be anywhere near as powerful as 10,000 links where each is from a different site. It’s far better to have links from different domains, rather than lots from the same source. Utilise Free Content Sites Another link source that I don’t really love but I see doing well for a lot of sites is utilising free content sites like Squidoo, Gather and Hubpages. These sites basically allow you to signup, write about whatever you please, and link to yourself however you want. Hubpages is very unpoliced and they’ll basically allow anything to stay on their site, but Squidoo (owned by Seth Godin) recently removed thousands of spammy pages from their site and are constantly policing them. If you are going to use sites like this, at least take the time to to create a good resource for users, rather than just throwing links to all of your sites in there. Not only will that make your link more valuable (more relelvant and on a page with lots of content) but its better for these communities. Use Article Directories A much better source of links if you want to receive them in return for your content is using article directories. There are a lot of awful, highly spammed directories out there, but there are definitely a few worth looking for. My favourites include Ezine articles, Article Dashboard and Go Articles. Ezine and a number of other sites review articles manually first so you’re not going to be able to spam them (which you shouldn’t want to, anyway). However, if you write good content, or pay someone else to, then you can get a great link in return. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Ezine is definitely the most trusted and you’ll actually find the page you write the article on can rank quite well, quite quickly. Once you’ve inserted your article content, you’re given the opportunity to fill in an Author Box and you can put your links in there. Collaborate with Influencers Some of the most popular posts on PluginID were the ones where I collaborated with other influences in the personal development niche. Examples include the Face-Off series that I ran and times where I would ask the same question to multiple people. If your idea is unique and interesting, you’ll find that the people involved are often happy to share the piece via social media sites and even link to it from their own blogs. Interview Someone Important Similar to the last idea, interviewing someone in your industry or someone high profile is likely to get you a lot of attention. There are two ways to gain links via this method. First of all, you can interview people who you hope will link back to the interview from their own sites. Or, you can utilise your connections (or hustle, hard) and interview someone the average person couldn’t get to answer their questions. I personally tried to interview Eckhart Tolle (an author who has been featured on Oprah and sold millions of books) but didn’t get very far. If I had managed to land the interview though, I know a lot of people would have linked to it naturally. Design a Unique, Beautiful Site There are many ways to have a good looking website. I personally like to buy templates from the likes of Theme Forest and customise them heavily (like I did with ViperChill). You could also hire a designer like Reese to create something custom that looks amazing. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Once you have a beautiful site in place, there are literally thousands of link opportunities. “Where?” I hear you ask. “CSS and design directories”, is my answer. There are tons of sites which showcase beautiful designs and offer a link to the site so people can view the real thing, rather than a screenshot or thumbnail. Many of these have a lot of authority in Google so if you want to find some, here’s a good place to start. Create a Great Resource There are a number of personal development bloggers giving sitewide (links from every page) links to PluginID because I created an amazing resource. That resource was a list of top blogs in my industry, but yours doesn’t have to be the same. Can you create a free eBook that answers a need? What about a resource on 101 ways to do ‘X’? How about a list of other sites which offer great advice on a popular topic? Think about something that you know your readers would want but would take a lot of work for you to put together. That’s the resource you should be creating. What Not To Do Now that we’ve covered some of my favourite ways to get links to a site, I quickly want to run through some things you shouldn’t be doing. While search engines generally reward sites with a lot of links by giving them high rankings, there’s also a few things they don’t like. Remember: search engines want to show the best results to their users. If you’re manipulating link counts heavily and don’t really deserve to rank for your phrase, then they don’t want you to. Here are a few things to watch out for: • Building Links too Fast – Build links very quickly is usually unnatural. There may be times where write a post that gets hundreds of links overnight and that’s not going to penalise you, but just be careful about building too many links for your site as a whole. I’m not a search engine, so I can’t give exact numbers, Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute but if you think you might be going a bit over the top, then you probably are. • Using Spammy Resources – Not all links are created equal. It would be far more powerful for Alexiskenne to have a homepage link from Problogger than it would be to have a link from Hubpages or an automated link farm. You can’t control who links to you, but just be careful where you focus your link building time. • Taking Part in Link Exchanges – If you want to add sites to your blogroll or resources page then add them, but don’t just do it because people are linking to you. Link exchanges worked well about 2 years ago, but are a very dated technique that search engines are well aware of. • Building Links Around One Phrase – You might have a phrase that you want to rank for and the best way to do that is to get links with that phrase as an anchor text, but only having links with that phrase is very unnatural. Most links help your rankings in general, so don’t be afraid to get links for different phrases or even your domain as a whole, like http://www.viperchill.com Combining the Two Now that we've covered on-site SEO and off-site SEO, you can look at how to combine the two. In the Wordpress SEO section I mentioned that you should focus on choosing a speficic keyphrase to try to rank your website for. If you overlooked that section then go back and read it now. I think it's crucial to not only defining your site, but helping you get more search engine traffic. Instead of just focusing on one phrase though, you can focus on many. Through using keyword tools, I found phrases like 'Wordpress SEO' and 'Social Media Strategy' were popular, and relevant to my industry. I wrote some great articles on the two topics, and then built as many links to them as I could. Those two terms have become some of the most popular sources of traffic for my site. Download Your $97 Gift >>>> Here


The Blogging Institute Don't think that your SEO work just has to stop with one phrase. Constantly work to expand how many pages your site has, how many links you have, and the types of phrases you're trying to rank for. Search engine traffic is something that you can generally work for over a period of time, and then reap the benefits of for a long time to come. Don't neglect this piece of the quadrant, and you'll likely go far. Let's Connect I really hope that you've learned a lot from this eBook and have enough information to go away with and take your blog to the next level. Though we are at the end of the guide, I hope this isn't the end of our relationship. There are (if you're interested) a few more ways to connect with me: • Subscribe to the blog by Email or RSS • Become a fan of Alexiskenne on Facebook • Follow Alexiskenne on Twitter • Add me as a friend on Facebook Before my blog was more popular, I loved being able to communicate with people via email, but I simply get far too many of them now to respond to every single one. I'm happy to interact with you in any of the ways above, though. Thanks for checking out the guide. Just don't forget about me when you join the A-list ranks!

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The Blogging Institute

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