Friday, February 17, 2006

Eric Wards Link Webinar

Thursday afternoon the Zunch crew gathered around in the conference room, beamed Eric Ward's Linking Webinar up on the Screen, dimmed the lights and popped open the soda. An hour and a half later we shut down and chatted about what we knew already, what we didn't know and what if anything was wrong.

Let me state at first that we thought this would be an advanced linking strategy webinar and that it was marketed to other firms/professionals in the SEO/SEM industry as such.

The webinar covered all the basics and gave useful information for those that are just starting out and trying to understand what linking and link popularity is all about. For the seasoned SEO however you may pick up a one or two things there that you may not of seen in the popular SEO forums.

Here are the things I found helpful:
  • Sources for free one way links from authoritative sites
  • Email subject and body copy suggestions that keep you out of the deleted folder
  • Link Software Screen shots and personal analysis
  • How to use blogs to further empower your core site's links
Here are a few things that I thought that may have been confusing to the attendees:
  • It was stated that buying links could penalize your site, then later in the webinar strategy for buying links was discussed. Eric stated that he had clients that he had bought links for and no clarification was giving between buying links & and how they may penalize a site so it sounded a like a contradiction.
  • Someone asked what an RSS feed was. I thought the answer was drawn out and confusing and probably should have been addressed after the Webinar in the Q&A time.
Here are some things that I know were stated and are actually wrong:
  • It was stated that Spiders (specifically Googlebot) will not crawl deep folder structures. Therefore don't waist time getting links to a file burried in your site. His analogy was if the page is in a hundred foot deep lake and the link is only 50 feet of rope then you can't reach the page. This is wrong. IF the PageRank of the page that is linking has high enough PageRank to justify a crawl to a file that is being linked to then the spider WILL index the page and it CAN be reached.
  • It was stated that "Undiscovered Links" or pages behind forms are unreachable by Spiders. In Googles case this is wrong. I recently built a site that had a simple 1 variable form containing 50 values. Google used the url in the action="" and then for each of the 50 values added the forms name to form a query"?state_id=" to the action url thus completing the url then crawled all 50 variations of the landing page. I posted this over in spider-food.net.

    Currently you cannot see the results of this in Google but I think the forum post and the responces to the post indicate proof that Google did infact index those pages and that there were NO links to those variable pages because the mod rewrite implemented in the bottom links were for the bots/users that wanted to click and link to a static version of the form page. The form was there for convenience/usability and was NOT suppost to be crawled YET it was.
I've tried to give a fair evaluation for both new and experienced webmasters. If you are just getting into links I recommend this seminar. If you are experienced with linking the price of the webinar for the little tidbits of new information may not be worth your time.

Eric has had a lot of success with his current clients I think he did a good job explaining linking and showed great examples of success and how powerful links can be to an SEO campaign. He is one that thinks outside of the box and has done his linking home work I would definitely heed any free advice you may find on his website.

Eric Ward's Website >>


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