If it’s your first time here, you may want to read the first part of this series. Click here to read Top Page for a Very High Competition Keyword in 3 Months Part I. And now, the saga continues…
I carried on and worked with a more vibrant team of experts in a much diversified field. Then there I have equipped myself with way farther powerful arsenals and tactics that suit greater heights. But that doesn’t stop me from sharpening and enhancing my skills.
Few weeks later – when I already have moved on, as if I had broken up with someone – I checked it’s stats on Google’s SERP. You’ve guessed it right! It’s already on the top page, both of the keywords and no one was optimizing them, I think (I checked its backlinks to make sure). But I will not take the credit of it just to be fair in case someone has continued the efforts I’ve pushed through for it to stand strong (perhaps the site owner chose to continue the campaign, since it’s already on the edge in achieving victory).
On the contrary, I have managed to shape its reputation and its online presence for a short period of time, and I definitely consider that as an accomplishment, including all the things I have learnt along the process.
What I have learned from this experience
- A great strategy wins the game. Making great strategies in getting your links is cool, but too much planning with no equivalent actions or too much action without thinking where your links are being planted will put all of your efforts to waste. It’s best to play it slowly but surely.
- The age of anchored text links matters. The longer it stays on the World Wide Web is the more it gives value to your campaign efforts. I realized recently that the backlinks with the targeted keywords used as anchor text gave higher quality of vote for that certain keyword to rank on Google’s SERP.
- Nofollow links matters. Even though nofollow links are said to be of no value, because it doesn’t pass through PR, some studies still show that Google bots follow these links. Though it would only count those links if they are absolutely “relevant” with the main content of the page. Of course Yahoo definitely follows these links, so it’s safe to say that it’s still worth it as long as the linking page is relevant. I also have a gut feel that it has some serious effect on keyword ranking.
- Reversed Keyword trick. I never optimized the keyword “bingo uk”, not even once. But I managed to make both keyword rank higher on Google SERP by just optimizing one, and that’s “uk bingo”. Then there was some point that the standings of the keyword “bingo uk” was ranking higher than “uk bingo” (until now on Google.co.uk).
- Quality over Quantity. Very self-explanatory, but I learned this the hard way. This is a very popular tip from most experts (gunning for 1st place against “Content is King”), so take it by the heart, because when they say 10 high quality backlinks are better than 100 easy to get links, it’s true.
- A site that has a well-staged internal link structure is the worst kind of enemy. It really is hard to compete with these guys. I have even found some along the way that solely depended on their internal links (100% internal with absolutely zero external links!) with the targeted keyword used as anchor text and placed on the footer. What hurts the most is that they belong to the top page, top 5 to be precise. Imagine competing with those solid links contained on hundreds of their pages.
On the first week of June 2010, I checked both keywords’ stats on the SERP again, and saw them still standing strong from where I’ve last seen them. Then there I’ve decided to take a screenshot of it (courtesy of screengrab Firefox plugin) and to write about the whole experience instead. But I will not spill the name of the site to avoid being charged of defamation, since I wasn’t able to disclose this with that client.
That’s the Google.com/ncr 1st result page for the term “uk bingo”. Here’s the hint: “the only one with the thumbs up”. If anyone’s interested to know the methods I used with this campaign, I can show you how. Just drop me an email and I’ll be happy to help you out.