Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Canonical URL and Multisite Architectures

We had our wise and well-informed SEO guru in today and asked many questions about how to construct a few sites that we're planning with many thousands of overlapping pages.   He answered our complex question with a single magic phrase.  Canonical URLs.

I said huh and he answered with, but I'm not sure that it'll work for multisites. So I googled multisite canonical URLs and learned from the Official Google Webmaster Central Blog:

Ways of handling cross-domain content duplication

 you can use the rel="canonical" link element across domains to specify the exact URL of whichever domain is preferred for indexing. While the rel="canonical" link element is seen as a hint and not an absolute directive, we do try to follow it where possible.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Link Tools Roundup by Search Engine Land

Another Big Roundup of Link Tools

by Debra Mastaler

One of my previous columns here on Link Week showcased a number of tools commonly used in link building. Since that post, a large number of new tools and services have come online, so I thought an update would be helpful. Not all of the sites listed will be traditional linking tools, I’ve also included a number of social media and general informational sites which can be used to find link partners.

Before we move on, the obligatory disclaimer. I have no financial involvement with any of these tools, they are presented as source options only. Some are free, others are not, always read their fine print.

This looks like a great list.It's from Search Engine Land. Thanks!

Standard link building tools

When you hear the term “link building tools”, the type of tools listed below are usually what comes to mind. Most of the tools here are anything but standard, they all come with multiple options (except Yahoo SE) and share one point of commonality… they list out backlink results.

Here’s a handful in alphabetical order:

•Analyze Backlinks

•BackLink Watch


•Link Diagnosis

•Light Insight

•Link Manager


•Majestic SEO

•OpenSite Explorer

•Raven Tools

•SEOBook Tools

•SEO Spyglass

•BackLink Summary

•Who Links To Me

•Yahoo Site Explorer

•Yoast Link Analysis

Using backlink data to create a strategy and determine tactics is important when building links, so find a tool (or three) you’re comfortable with and start checking out who’s linking to whom. Most of the paid tools have free trial offers. Take note of the sites your competitors are linking to and any media mentions they’re getting. Start a database with the journalists you find and include them in future press release submissions.

Non-standard, outside of the box link tools

One of the biggest challenges in link building is finding quality sites to partner with. Competition for link real estate is keen, so be aware of opportunities popping up in your niche. Since you can’t spend 24/7 in research mode, having leads and opportunities sent to you goes a long way in securing good links. Here’s a handful of tools to help identify trends and uncover link potential.

Backtype is a “real-time conversational search engine” which indexes blogs and social media networks. While it’s helpful for finding hot trends/ideas to write about, the real link building juice lies in their Connect and Backtweet services.

Connect is an email alert service which monitors blog comments for keywords while Backtweets searches Twitter for URL’s. Both tools are great for finding sources/enthusiasts talking up your industry. Often, I find links in comments are better resources than those in the feature post! Go after those sources and find a way to secure them as a link partner.

Xmarks is a bookmark sync service with multiple options, but their Smarter Search feature is a great way to find pages being bookmarked in quantity. Why? People tend to bookmark sites with good content which means the source sites have potential to be good link partners. Find out what’s being bookmarked and work to get your link-filled content on those sites.

Over on the Spiced2 blog, there is a great article on How To Check To See If Your Email Has Been Blacklisted. If you send email link requests and aren’t seeing the response rates you’d like, this might be a good one to read.

Two Twitter tools we can’t live without are Twitter Feed, which adds your RSS to Twitter and Facebook automatically and Twilert which tracks specific keywords being used in tweets. When the alerts come back from Twilert, we use the information to look for potential host sites and for quality people to follow. Hopefully, they’ll follow in return which broadens the base of people seeing the links to our blogs and/or other web properties.

Widget marketing is all the rage and with good reason, it’s a great way to take a link campaign viral while building brand and driving traffic. If you’re not a programmer, no worries, sites like Widgetbox and the Widgipedia Forum are around to help. Spend some time there and on StickiWidgets looking at popular widgets and see if you can create something similar for your niche. Once your widget is done and launched, announce it’s creation via press release, to your customer base and on the forums you frequent.

Lastly, check out and Feed For All, both applications create RSS for static pages. Keep in mind you can create a feed for pages on your site as well as link embedded content you’ve placed on other sites. (Think article directories.) Submit the feeds you’ve created to the RSS directories as another way to drive link popularity.

Link building may be hard, but it’s not impossible if you consider the opportunities behind each of these tools. Look beyond the basics and find unique sites to host content and pull links from. Broaden your reach and the links will come.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Google juice question...

I just got this in an email from a lady who I do a blog with....

"I wanted to ask if you know anything about Google Juice for the blog? I know that both you and John mentioned it before but didn't know if that was something that needed to be set up? I haven't had any experience with it, we didn't use it on my husband's blog."

Woops, I wonder which of my comments confused her....

Monday, April 12, 2010

Unsubscribing and Can-Spam

Is this compliant?

A company sends me an email. There's no unsubscribe button but it says, "forward this to" to unsubscribe.   But it doesn't work.  Are they compliant or not?

Here's the next level of detail. I have my mail forwarded from one email box to another.  If their bot is only reading the "sent from" account, it cannot connect it back to the original email in their database.  But if their bot reads the "reply to" or looks at the attached email and who it was sent to, they could remove me from their database.  They do neither.

Instead, they send me the basic: "you now need to login to your account or email from the original account message:.  Here it is, the name of the company in question,, is included:

 to me
show details 9:16 AM (14 minutes ago)

This is an automated response.

We were unable to locate an account with the email address provided.

Please choose one of the methods listed below to change your email opt-out status with us:

1.      Reply to this email and let us know your full name, Audible username and/or
   an alternate email address that may be listed in your account. The email
   address in your account should be shown at the bottom of emails that we send
   to you.

2.      If you can send email from the address listed in your account preferences
   (this address should be shown at the bottom of emails that we send to you),
   resend your request to from that address.

3.      If you know your Username and Password, go to to remove the check from "Please
   include me in's email updates."

   If you have forgotten your password you can go to