Link Building: The Key to Exploding Visibility

Link Building SEOHave you ever felt even a little stressed about your online business, about why there are so few visitors and just not enough sales? Are you ever curious why some websites almost permanently appear in the search listings for the keywords you are targeting?

Well, stop worrying, stop analysing, stop being stressed.

Go build a link.

Yes, an incoming link.

There are tonnes of ways to do this:

  1. Comment on someone’s blog
  2. Write an article – submit it to Hubpages.
  3. Write another article – submit it to
  4. Submit a press release.
  5. Answer someone’s question in Yahoo! answers.
  6. Email webmasters. Ask for a link.
  7. Write something interesting on your site. Tweet the URL out to your friends.
  8. Participate in forums – change your forum signature to include your link.
  9. Submit your site to directories.
  10. Guest blog for someone.
  11. Get your site listed in one of your local club’s website
  12. Submit a WordPress theme / plugin
  13. Submit a YouTube video
  14. … the list goes on.

Remember, you can have the most beautiful site in the world, best ever sales copy that literally hypnotizes your visitors to empty their wallet with you, or the best email marketing and customer retention program in the world.

But without targeted traffic you will not have any sales. And traffic only comes from 3 places.

  1. Referred Traffic – coming from the links to your site
  2. Search Engine Traffic – and you get great search rankings largely based on number of links you have to your site.
  3. Direct Traffic – either thru an offline campaign, or building (1) and (2) so successfully that people type your URL in right into the browser

Either way, you gotta start with building a link. Then another. And another.

Building valid, relevant and quality incoming links is the online visibility TRUMPCARD. And its going to be for some time.

Enough said.

Go build a link.

The Online Stock Photo Monopoly

Stock PhotographyI’m must say, I am very impressed with the strategic moves made by Getty Images – to really raise the bar and monopolise the industry of online royalty free stock photos.

As someone who develops websites on a regular basis – I get my images from several online stock photo sources. These were my three main sources.

  1. stock.xchng for free images (quality of images not as excellent)
  2. StockXpert (where you can get a low resolution photo for USD$1. i.e. 1 credit)
  3. iStockPhoto (used to be priced like StockExpert – but has risen their credits prices, so unless you get 2000 credits at a go or use their monthly subscriptions, you can’t find credits less than USD$1)

Well, sometime in early 2006, Getty Images bought over iStockPhoto for 50 million USD, and then in 2009, it acquired JupiterImages, which owned stock.xchng and StockXpert

These acquisitions practically made Getty Images the monopoly for microstock photos, since the only other major competitor Corbis has been selling their photos at prices at well over what most web developers will be willing to pay for (e.g. USD110 for a royalty free sunrise photo!)

Well, today I received a notification from StockXpert, saying they are ceasing operations, and all remaining credits can be ported over to iStockPhoto.

We are sorry to announce that beginning today, StockXpert will no longer sell new credits or accept new members. On February 11, 2010, searching and downloading at StockXpert will cease. This will be the end of image sales at StockXpert.

All SXP members have the opportunity to transfer their remaining credits to iStockphoto. iStock offers the highest quality affordable microstock imagery in the industry. Come and see for yourself. SXP credits will be honored 1 for 1 at iStockphoto.

Its an awesome move. Bad news for web designers though – meaning that we probably won’t be able to get awesome USD$1 images anymore.

Yikes. Its time to be a photographer.

The New Word of Mouth

Coming to think of this, it’s nothing less than amazing – I’m now seated a cafe in the airport, eating my breakfast and sipping my coffee as I type these words on my iPhone WordPress application.

The keyboard is small, but even as I misspell words, the iPhone automatically corrects the word for me. And I know as I hit the publish button on this screen, these words will be automagically be transmitted and transferred from my mini handheld device – halfway round the globe into the database of my web host (out of goodness know how many there are) and appearing on for public consumption.

All these in less than 10 seconds.

Just a mere 20 years ago, how can someone even imagine this is possible?

With end users like me given this power to publish at the speed of thought, companies really need to realize how the “word of mouth” landscape has changed.

Word of mouth today no longer needs mouths. All it requires are two thumbs, an iPhone and a GPRS connection.

If consumers (your customers and prospects!) are publishing more information online than you every single day, how can your brand even escape from being drowned in their opinions?

How is your company coping with the changed landscape?

Google Blogger is Taking Down FTP Publishing

Its news about a week ago, but on the Blogger Buzz, its was announced that they are going to shut down the FTP publishing feature:

Rick Lau from Blogger Buzz explains:

FTP remains a significant drain on our ability to improve Blogger: only .5% of active blogs are published via FTP รขโ‚ฌโ€ yet the percentage of our engineering resources devoted to supporting FTP vastly exceeds that.

Its sad and will probably wreck havoc for a lot of bloggers. Even though 0.5% of the active blogs are published via FTP, I feel that this would have been the ones which are MOST active!

This means that the only way to have a blogger powered blog using your domain is via their “custom domain” settings, where you own a domain, but point it to the Google servers.

This also means that blogger affected by this will have to migrate their blogs back into Google’s servers. The Blogger Buzz post mentioned that they are going to provide tools and extensive documentation on how to do it.

But, frankly if I’d had to do that, I’d rather switch to WordPress and maintain control over the hosting. Not that I don’t like Blogger, but because there is so much more you can do when have more control over the files on your site.

Are You a Paralyzed Blogger?

Hola! Its quite amazing how a whole month went by in 2010 already – its the 31st of January today and I’ve not made a single post since Christmas 2009! Heh. :mrgreen: Well, I’ve been bogged down helping companies get their web marketing off the ground – so much so that I’ve hardly had the time to focus back on my own blog!

Contradictory, I know.

And its frustrating.

No, its frustrating because sometimes, I do have the time to post – but being the perfectionistic me, I am always reluctant to do so before I get my thoughts sorted out and make sure my post REALLY made sense… practically waiting for the perfect blog post to appear before I hit the publish button.

Well, I never got the perfect blog post. In the end, all that waiting and thinking too much really paralyzed me.

Anyway, it time for me to get back to blogging here. ๐Ÿ™‚

So I’ve learnt a lesson today and I hope this goes out to all “paralyzed bloggers” like me out there: Don’t wait for the perfect blog post. You might want to review your post to make sure it does not cause you to lose your job or destroy your reputation… but don’t stop posting because the post is not perfect. It will never be.