Weekly SEO news: 3 April 2012

Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

Last week, another large blog link network has been penalized by Google. Having a good backlink profile has become more important than ever. How do you check your backlink profile, and are your rankings at risk?

In the news: a new study indicates that you can increase your clicks by running AdWords ads (even if you are listed for the keyword), many ads are never seen, slow pages should not be excluded from Googlebot and more.

Table of contents:

We hope that you enjoy this newsletter and that it helps you to get more out of your website. Please pass this newsletter on to your friends.

Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Why your backlink profile becomes even more important (and how to check it)

Last week, another large blog link network was penalized by Google. Having a good backlink profile has become more important than ever. How do you check your backlink profile, and are your rankings at risk?

What exactly happened?

Google's engineers are working hard on eliminating spam from the search results. Last week, they penalized websites that participated in a paid blog network with the name BuildMyRank. Another blog network was also affected by that penalty.

If you used one of these networks to get backlinks to your website, chances are that your Google rankings will be affected by this penalty.

Link diversity is the key to rankings that last

People who use automated tools to get backlinks to their websites create backlink profiles with a particular pattern. It is relatively easy to detect these pattern.

For example, if you participated in these blog networks or if you use tools that automatically submit your link to forums and social media sites, then it is easy to find out that these links are unnatural.

If your web site has a good backlink profile, your website won't be affected by algorithm changes.

What is a good backlink profile?

Link building is more than getting a few nofollow backlinks from good websites. It's about networking. A good backlink profile shows search engines that your website is liked by many different people. That means that your website should also have links from many different website types.

How to check the backlink profile of your website

You can check the backlink profile of any website with the backlink intelligence tools in SEOprofiler. For example, you can quickly see which website types link to a site:

backlink diversity

You will quickly see if the majority of the links comes from blogs, forums, press release sites, directories, etc. You will also see which anchor texts are used to link to the site:

anchor text profile

Geo variation and different top level domains also contribute to the diversity of a backlink profile. This information is also available in the reports:

link countries

In addition, you will get further information about the backlinks: are the links nofollowed, are they image or text links, what is the ratio of same site/external links on the linking sites, which keywords are used on the linking sites etc.

Having a diversified backlink profile is very important if you want to make sure that your Google rankings will last. Do not put all of your eggs in one basket. Analyze your backlinks now and check the backlink profile of your website.


2. Search engine news and articles of the week

Facebook delves deeper into search

"To date, Facebook hasn’t made search a priority, and it shows. [...]

About two dozen Facebook engineers, led by a former Google engineer named Lars Rasmussen, are working on an improved search engine, say two people familiar with the project who did not want to be named because the company is in a quiet period ahead of its IPO."

StatisticsStudy: impact of organic ranking on ad click incrementality

"We found that on average, 81% of ad impressions and 66% of ad clicks occur in the absence of an associated organic result on the first page of search results. [...]

On average, 50% of the ad clicks that occur with a top rank organic result are incremental. The estimate for average incrementality of the ad clicks increases when the rank is lower;

82% of the ad clicks are incremental when the associated organic search result is between ranks 2 and 4, and 96% of the ad clicks are incremental when the advertiser’s organic result ranked lower than 4 (i.e., 5 and below)."

New study: many ads are never seen

"The study showed that 31% of ads were not in-view, meaning they never had an opportunity to be seen. There was also great variation across sites where the campaigns ran, with in-view rates ranging from 7% to 100% on a given site. [...]

Fraud is an undeniably large and growing problem in digital advertising. The results showed that an average of 0.16% of impressions across all campaigns was delivered to non-human agents."

Editor's note: if your website has high rankings in the regular search results of a search engine, your site is less dependent from paid ads.

Matt CuttsVideo: should I disallow Googlebot from crawling slower pages?

"On some pages, our site uses complex queries to return the users request, giving a slow loading time. Should we not allow Googlebot to index these pages to improve our overall site speed?"

Matt Cutt's answer: If the overall site is fast, you don't have to worry about this but in general you should try to to make your pages faster.

Search engine newslets

  • Microsoft's secret weapon against Google Maps - open source.
  • Rumor: Google to launch third party commenting platform.
  • Google Drive: coming this April.
  • Google under fire in UK report into privacy.
  • WSJ: Dear Google user: we're sure you're going to love this.
  • Google's really advanced search (April's fool joke).

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3. Success stories

Check the backlink profile of your website and much more

SEOprofiler is a full-featured SEO solution that can analyze the backlink profile of your website and much more.

You can also use it to spy on the Google rankings and Google AdWords campaigns of your competitors, it helps you to get new backlinks, it helps you to optimize your web pages, it checks your rankings on search engines and much more.


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4. Previous articles

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