Archive for June, 2008

New Techie Stuff for EDUtextlink

Monday, June 30th, 2008


Finally our database is ready! After weeks of building and tweaking, we now will manage all of your projects online. You can log in to give us your project outline, and then monitor the progress of your pages. You can view the URLs to your pages as they go up, and log back in to any previous project. You can reference what edu links we have placed, and when. You can leave us messages on your project blog.

And behind the scenes, I get to do the happy dance because it is managing all of our staff, keeping the project flowing and efficient with minimal interference on my part. I must give a plug to Victor Raff and RaffSoftware who built this system for us. His work is amazing, he somehow made creating a database a joyful experience. (this may be the first time someone referred to database creation as joyful??) I would ask for something that I just KNEW would be impossible or too expensive, and every time “Yes, Julie, we can do that. “ It was MAGIC. And he was so very patient in explaining everything to me, asking very detailed questions to be sure the system would operate exactly how we needed it to.

Have you ever built a database? Share your experience with me. I found it to be fun, challenging. Required a lot of brain scratching. Picturing of scenarios and what-ifs. I think in my next life I want to be Victor.

New Website:

Our new site will be ready soon, with a new logo and look. Another wonderful experience with a web professional, we are crazy about our new designer, Gary Leung. We are pretty sure he is psychic, because he continues to show us designs that we love on the first mockup. What is even  more special about Gary is that in addition to being talented, an amazing eye for design, but he is also a great communicator, and an organized worker. Anyone that has worked with designers and artists knows this is a rare combination.

Blogging software:

We recently finished a customization on our blogging software. This is pretty much behind the scenes stuff, but it manages the uploading of our content, backs up all of your edu pages, and gives us the ability to move or edit content very easily. Just one more way we are different from the rest, we are in this for the long haul. And as luck would have it, we are working with a third really amazing talented programmer. Three people in a row that just blow us away. We suspect that Bob is a robot alien, only here to observe human life, because he somehow produces what we ask for within hours. Or he may just be like us, glued to our screen day and night, working because we can’t help it. Bob, can you make it do this? And instead of replying “Yes” he replies “Yes, it is done.”

I re-read this entry, and it probably seems like we agreed to give a testimonial or plug for these guys, but really that did not come up. I am truly just that excited to have done work each of them, lucky to have found them.

Doing business with a small business

Monday, June 30th, 2008

I regularly hear surprise and appreciation from clients when we go above and beyond with their linking campaigns. We closely monitor our clients, their links, their results, so we have learned what is the most effective way to use these edu links. It often plays out like this: a client turns their project details, I look it over, look at their site and rankings, and make sure it seems like the best use of their pages. I email with a suggestion to change a keyword, or limit the number of links, I explain why I am suggesting it, and I get their input. And the reaction I get so often is “Wow, thank you for taking the time to really look at this!” Or a client calls on the phone, and we end up chatting for 30 minutes about their business, Google, SEO, linking. They learn a thing or two. I learn a thing or two. I really can’t help it. I have a passion for this industry, and I really want to see a client climb up in the rankings.

What surprises me though is how surprised they are when we just do what comes naturally. It is a sad commentary on the state of customer service and business relationships when a client is just glad they got an email reply. With the impersonal way we have to do business nowadays, with automated phone lines (press 4 to hear your balance) and online transactions where you never even speak to someone, I really enjoy developing relationships with our regular clients. It is rewarding, fulfilling, exciting.

And what I really love is hearing from clients that they handle their customer service the same way. I personally love doing business with a smaller company. A small company doesn’t mean they are any less smart; on the contrary they are usually more experts in their field than a large corporation. And having someone know my name, my business, it just makes the day go smoother, and of course adds value to whatever I am buying.

Sometimes we even become clients of our clients, doing barters and supporting each other. Many of our best SEO networking, sharing ideas and tactics, comes from chats with our best clients.

I love my work. I hope you do too.

How Many Pages do I need?

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

Clients ask us every day. And we love helping them figure it out.

Link building is not an exact science. Many factors will determine how many pages you should buy and when. Here are some things to consider:

  1. What is your budget? We all need more links than we can afford. So determining how much you can spend each month will help you decide what package to start with. We can work on a long term discounted package with you for 10pgs a month or more. Our clients that are serious about their plan to move up in search have a long-term campaign going with us, focusing on new keywords every month, or going back and pushing earlier keywords further as needed.
  2. How competitive are your keywords? You will want more pages (meaning more links) for the more competitive keywords. The more general a keyword, the more competitive it is. If you can work on some long-tailed specific keywords, you can push up further with less pages. Maybe 5 pages will show results on a more specific keyword that you are already optimized for.
  3. How far do you have to go? One client moved from page 5 to page 3 with just 2 pages, then to #21 with just 3 more. Those pages had 2 links per page. But if you are already in the top 5 and need to move up further, consider 10 pages or more.
  4. What are your competitors doing? If they are also working on their linkbuilding, you will want to match their efforts. If it looks like your competitors are fairly weak in SEO, you can move up with less effort.
  5. How many words are you trying to cover? The most impact come with one link to your site per page. At most we recommend 2-3 keywords linked. This can stretch your budget and let you experiment to find out the right amount for the movement you need. We do not recommend 5-6-7 8 links per page. It is spammy and dilutes the link juice—we want you to see results! We have seen pre-sell pages out there on the net that are loaded with links, and we just shake our head. Those pages may have cost $50 less than ours, but these poor clients are not getting what they are paying for, it’s a shame.

The campaigns we run for clients are varied. Some clients in a competitive niche put one link per page on all 20 edu domains right out of the box. These are clients that are experienced buying links, and know they need to get serious if they are going to move up. Other clients start out with a 2 page to test the waters. We really do not expect much in increased rankings with just a 2 page, we suggest at least a 5 page to test the waters. The 2 page is great for getting to know us though, and our service! Or as demonstrated, if you are not yet ranked for your term, it is a good way to see a big jump from nowhere.

We’re always ready to help you work out the details of your campaign, just ask.

Using our EDU links to get multiple results listed in search

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

We are seeing some success with clients using our EDU pages to build up multiple results in Google. The indented link you see below some search results is for multiple pages that are both relevant. Webmasters desire this additional link to make your page stand out in the results.

We have advised some clients to link to some optimized internal pages. We like to see clients mix up their campaign with some links to homepage, and some to internal pages that are optimized for that particular keyword. We are seeing some results with multiple listings, and indented results.

What we did for a client already ranking #1 in Google:

We recently worked with a high profile client who had done extensive SEO work. They were already #1 for their keyword, so we linked that keyword to 2 different internal pages that were optimized for that word. This was a 15 page package, with 2 links per page, the same 2 links on each page, to these internal pages. The results: #1, #2, and #4 spot in Google.