Is Creating Creative Content a Completely Contrived Curse of Crazy Conspirators?

At the risk of stepping on a couple of toes, I’m going to post a quote from a comment that was made recently in a real estate community website. I was in an argument about reciprocal linking, and the commenter with the opposing view had this to say:

“Let’s not go down the road that “good content” will generate large numbers of one-way links. By and large, the world is not standing at the ready to link to the content of an agent broker site, based on some sort of remarkable content. Anyone who promises that is misleading their readers. It rarely happens that way.”

Those of you who read this blog regularly, will know immediately that I couldn’t DIS-agree more with the above comment. Frankly, I think it’s ridiculous… but I wanted to use it as a spring board to talk about something. Namely, blogging… and the SEO benefits that naturally come with an active blog.

Do you have a blog yet? Are you actively writing articles and posts? Why? What do you hope to gain? The standard answers are: “to generate clients”, “to network with other real estate pros”, “to brand an online presence”…. but how often do you hear someone talking about blogging purely for the SEO benefits? It is widely known in the blogosphere, but I don’t here it talked about that often in the real estate community.

A few years ago when I started taking notice of search engine marketing, I read everything I could get my hands on, I asked questions, I subscribed to special newsletters, read e-books, and studied religiously. Because of that time put in, I can truly say that I look at the Internet differently… through the eyes of a search engine.

The first thing I do when I look at a new site is look at the titles, the internal linking structure, and the text based content. I immediately start thinking about how a site can be improved and modified to rank better. When I first started noticing blogs as a marketing tool back in 2004, I was immediately struck with the Search engine friendly nature of most blogs.

In case you didn’t know, blogs are like candy to search engine spiders. Why is this true?

  1. Spiders love new content. The faster you post, the faster the spiders will return.
  2. Blogs present this content in a very easy to read, and easy to index fashion.
  3. Most good blogging platforms place the title of your post in the <title> tag of the page.
  4. The title of the post is also a link to that post that includes the keywords in the anchor text.
  5. By listing posts in categories, you are basically creating an easy to index site map.
  6. Each post has it’s own individual page.
  7. Search Engine’s simply love fresh content and keyword based links.

In short, weblogs were designed with search engines in mind.

Now, in response to my friend that I quoted above… I plan on completely contradicting the comment, and making a bold statement of my own by saying: Creating quality content is one of the fastest ways you can consistently grow incoming links.

That is a bold statement I know… but it is true. Yes, there are hundreds if not thousands of great ways to grow you link popularity… and I encourage many people to use these strategies. But some of these popular ways to grow links include unnatural linking strategies like reciprocal linking, and purchasing links. These practices are considered by the search engines to be unnatural, and there is a very real possibility that you could be penalized if you are caught.

When you write a popular article on your blog or site, and it gets picked up by other blogs and sites, you are instantly creating quality links, and at the same time, are driving traffic to your site. What could be better?

Why would you want to waste your time spamming random websites with reciprocal link requests when you could be creating an online following by writing about an interesting subject that you love, and creating great incoming links at the same time??? To me, it’s a total no brainer.

So, if you are a veteran blogger, or are just getting started, don’t dismiss the value of your blog when you develop your SEO strategy. It is one of the best tools you have. And if someone tries to tell you that good content isn’t all that important in search engine marketing, just try to keep the snickers to yourself…

crazy horse

Comments

  1. says

    The title is the thing that brings me to your content. Very nicely done.
    I look at hundreds of blog post headlines a day… but only click on about 6.

  2. says

    I receive 2-3 requests a day for link exchanges. I am too inexperienced in SEO to understand how a link exchange might benefit.

    I think I understand you to say that it won’t. What should be my pat answer to them? A link here?

    Thanks in advance for your advice.

  3. says

    Hey Brian,
    Thanks for commenting. This article may shed some more light: http://hismove.com/blog/rip-reciprocal-linking-deceased-1999-2006/

    The guy I quote from uses a form letter saying that he would be happy to link to the person requesting if that person would just write good content for him to post. It’s a clever response.

    These days, I usually ignore those link exchange emails. I tend to get around 5-10/day because I used to be involved in some link exchanging back in 2003-2004. I got tired of researching each link that was presented for exchange to see if it was of good enough quality. 99% of the time, the links they offer are totally useless. Unrelated pages, hundreds of links, un-indexed pages, banned domains, etc.

    It just isn’t worth the time. You can create more links with one quality blog post than working for 2 weeks trying to exchange links.

    Hope that answered your question. Let me know if you have any others…

  4. says

    One question. Should a realtor have a blog that is disconnected from their primary website? I see many realtors do this. Will this increase SEO to both sites from cross linking?

  5. says

    Hey Scott,
    There are obviously a couple of schools of thought on the subject. I prefer a blog that is connected to your primary site through a directory like mine: http://www.hismove.com/blog that is because it gains authority as part of the main site.

    When you build 2 completely different sites, in many ways you have to work twice as hard because you are working to build links and authority to 2 different domains. Yes, there is some small value in crosslinking, but not much. Also, you have to consider the fact that users may be confused by the two different sites… that will likely have 2 completely different designs. So, if I had a choice, I would always go with a blog integrated into a site, or even better… a site integrated into a blog!! (tomatoblogs.com)

  6. says

    Nice! I like your title and the article. Thanks for clearly explaining the many benefits of having and updating a blog with quality content.

  7. says

    Great post,

    I started my blog http://www.fitzfp-llc.com a couple of days ago and it is a really great platform. I had done other blogs but now that I have one intergrated into the website it is a lot easier to upload info.

    Best of luck,

    Mac

  8. says

    I totally agree, content is King. Great content is never spam, it may not get you the links you may be looking for, but it is better then trying to get links from other people in your industry, in exchange for links you give them.

  9. says

    Justin, Hi

    I wholeheartedly agree that good original content is the way to go… What other content would keep you looking at a atie, and why would anyone comment (positively anyway) on tired old content? So good content must be better for getting links etc.

    The only problem with it is… I get hooked and spend too long reading it! Now what was it I was supposed to be doing now?

    Cheers,

    Gregg Thurby

  10. says

    Nicely put Justin. Staying on the path of blogging good content for the benefit of your clients and fellow realtors will lead to success and solid knowledge.

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