Article Submission: 11 Practical Tips

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Submitting articles to articles directories and archive is a popular and effective tactics to create quality links to your website. The main advantages of articles over directories are:

- More control over the choice of anchor text for your links.
- More than one link can be created in an article. You can therefore have more links and can even vary the anchor text you use.
- Links in articles are embedded in relevant content and therefore carry more value.

While valuable, the process of submitting articles is really time consuming and to be honest quite boring. Based on my experience with articles submission, I have gathered a few practical tips that have helped me saving quite a lot of time. I hope they will help you too.

1) Have your list of articles directories ready before you start.
This common sense, but if you have your list ready you will save so much time. When you create your list, make sure you gather enough information on the article directory such as Page Rank, guideline submission and login requirements. I would also advise to create a spreadsheet including a column where you can add the date your submitted the article.

2) Have a list of articles ready.

When you select the articles you want to use make sure to use article that content that match your website. Avoid using the content of your website but rather create fresh and original articles ( this will prevent from duplicate content issues). Avoid promotional only articles, but prefer articles that brind real content. I would suggest that you write or copy the article in a text file so that you can copy and paste into the submission forms.

3) Select your links wisely

Make sure you select your link wisely as they have to match with your SEO strategy.Do not overuse the same anchor text, but rather use varitions to maximise your results.

4) Think about resource boxes, author profiles and signatures

Many article directories do not allow link embedded in the body of the article. To avoid bad surprises, make sure you create some content for the resource box or signature where you can create links. Resource boxes and signatures usually allow up to 250 characters.

5) Create and author name, pen name
Most articles directories will ask you to set up an author profile to sign your articles. Most of the time you cannot use your company name, so I would advise that you either use your real name or an alias to sign your article. To make it easier, make sure you use the same author profile. That will save you time in the submission process and help you to find out how many of your articles have been indexed.

6) Use a specific email account for your submission

Using your usual email account is fine, but you will soon find out that you will receive quite a lot of confirmation emails that can quickly increase the size of your mail box. Moreover, it will be easier to track your submission with a specific email account.

7) Use an automated form software
The submission process requires you to load the same details over and over (name, email address, etc...). To save time filling in forms, I would advise to use a automated form submitter such a Roboform. The software store your information and fill in the form automatically with it!

8) Read Submission Guidelines
Articles directories have different guidelines. Some of them allow links in the body of the articles, other don't. Some allow more than one links, some other don't. To avoid having your article rejected, make sure you read the submission guidelines before.

9) Do not over submit similar articles

Make sure you do not over submit the same article. This could trigger the duplicate content filter and undermine your results. As a rule of thumb, I do not submit the same article more than 3 times. Another alternative is to change some of the content, title and links.

10) Do not over submit to similar directories

Submitting 10 articles to the same directory can also trigger some spam filter from search engines especially if the submissions are done at the same time. To avoid your links to be discounted, make sure you vary the directories you submit to and leave a couple of weeks between 2 submissions to the same directory.

11) Monitor your progress and be patient

Most articles directories require editorial review before publishing your article. This can take a couple of weeks so be patient. In the meantime, you can still monitor your progress and see how many articles have been indexed by search engines. For this, carry a search for the author name in quote (e.g. "author name"). You will find out how many of your articles have been indexed.

Win a Search Engine Marketing Campaign on Google and Yahoo!

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Advantate , a new joint venture between Fairfax Digital and Melbourne IT, is running a competition to win a month managed campaign on Google and Yahoo Search Marketing.
The prize is valued at $600 and includes a dedicated campaign manager for a month, full reporting and all the search engine fees paid.

I am not 100% sure about this (no mention on their website), but the prize does not seem to include the media budget for the campaign. If it is the case, you will still have to pay for each click, which could end up being quite a bit of money depending on your industry...

However, if you are thinking of testing search engine marketing this is a good option as you will have expert advice for free, which usually helps to avoid common mistakes .

To enter the competition, you need to write 25 words on why your business would benefit from advertising on Google or Yahoo and submit your text in the advantate entry form located here

SEO Jobs of the Week in Sydney

Thursday, 19 June 2008

You are looking for a SEO Job in Sydney and you do not have much time to go through all the different classifieds. No worries, we do the research, we select the best SEO offers and you just have to click!

This week we have selected some of the following SEO Jobs offers available in Sydney. It is important to notice the more and more attractive salaries :-)

SEO Specialist : Agency Role, $70,000 to $105,000 Salary package, Darlinghurst Location,Listed 18 June 2008.

In-House SEO Specialist: $80,000 to $100,000 base + Super, Corporate Environment, Strategic & hands-on role, Listed 17 June 2008.

Junior SEO Position: Up to $50,000 package, CBD Location, Agency Work, Listed 17 June 2008.

For more information visit some of previous posts:
- How to find a SEO Job
- SEO Salary Survey

Free Wordtracker Trial: 7 Days of Full Access

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Wordtracker, the keyword research software is offering a 7 days full access trial to new users. The great thing about this offer is that you have access to all the Wordtracker functionalities at no cost for 7 days.
At the end of the 7 days you can subscribe to the software for $59 /month or unsubscribe.

You can create your free trial account here (affiliate link)

Please note that a credit card number is required to open a new account. You won't be charged if you cancel before the end of the 7 days.

Link Baiting with Fake Article: The Limits of the Google Algorithm

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Using articles to generate incoming links to your website is a popular link baiting tactic. However to make people want to link to your article, the content needs to be either highly qualitative or very exclusive and sometimes a combination of both and more

If it does not exist, let's invent it

If you have done some link baiting, you would probably find that this type of content is usually extremely rare and hard to produce if you are not a huge publishing company, which has access to exclusive information. Mid May this year, a UK online marketer, Lyndon Antcliff, decided to find an alternative by producing its own piece of content that was surely exclusive, highly controversial and arguably qualitative.

Fake content, but massive results

Using a journalistic style, Lyndon outlined the 'fake' story of a 13 years old kid that used his father credit card to buy for around $30,000 of video games and hookers. In a flash the story has created a large buzz on the internet, generating 2489 diggs votes, over 1500 inbounds links in a week and a large amount of traffic. As a result of the popularity of the article, major news websites such as The Daily Telegraph,, Fox and The Sun published the news, which produced more links and even more traffic...

Fame can trick you

While producing a really successful link baiting campaign, the SEO guy may have made a little mistake (or not as Lyndon is now offering his services as a link baiting coach), which is to reveal the hoax in his blog (please note that the post has been removed since then) rather than on the website where the story has been published (note that the story now mentions that it is a parody). While increasing his notoriety, generating a lot of discussions in the SEO community, the blog post also later came to the ears of Google and its spam team represented by Matt Cutts.

Applause, Criticisms and Google in the awkward position

In his blog, Matt Cutts condemns this link baiting practice quoting the Google Webmasters' Guidelines:

These quality guidelines cover the most common forms of deceptive or manipulative behavior, but Google may respond negatively to other misleading practices not listed here (e.g. tricking users by registering misspellings of well-known websites). It’s not safe to assume that just because a specific deceptive technique isn’t included on this page, Google approves of it.

As the 'manipulative behaviour' was clearly stated by its author, all the inbounds links created have been ignored and have therefore no impact on the website search engine rankings and it seems that a penalty has been applied to the website

However, this particular case puts Google in a really awkward position (as well as some arguably reliable media sources). Before, Lyndon actually said that the article was fake, Google's alogorithm could not technically verify the exactitude of the content and therefore could not condemn the 'manipulative behavior' of the tactic.
Such case reveals some of the limit of the almighty alogorithm, built to provide users with the most relevant and useful information, but not built to verify the exactitude of the content...
Would this open the door to a new link baiting style ?

TNX: A New Way to Buy Text Links

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Even if the use of paid links and link advertisment is getting more and more controvertial in 2008, the willingness to buy quality links is still present in the SEO community. Late 2007, a new player in the contextual advertising/ text link broker industry has emerged with a competitive offer.
In a short amount of time, TNX.Net has managed to generate a good online presence, get over 30,000 users and develop a network of 27 Million text links over 17 Million different web pages.

What is TNX

TNX is a text link broker. They have managed to develop a network of publishers willing to sell some text links on their pages in exchange of a reward. In the TNX case, the reward is in the form of points that can be sold or redeemed for some cash. TNX promote their offer to advertisers interested in buying text links from their network of websites. The TNX system manage the entire transaction process between the advertiser and the publisher.

What is great about TNX's offer

For the Advertisers

- The main advantage is to be able to buy a large amount of links at a low cost. With TNX's program you can get thousand of links for $10 /month, which makes it one of the most cost effective offer in the market.

- Advertisers can select websites based on a set of parameters that include: type of content, geography, number of Yahoo backlinks and Page Rank. This feature offers an effective way to make sure that text links are well placed.

- Advertisers' links can be integrated in a paragraph of text to bring more value and look less suspicious to Google's filters

- Advertisers can use different anchor text for their text links. This feature allows advertisers to target more than one keyword at a time and especially to look less suspicious to Google.

- TNX offers discounts up to 50% for SEO consultants and agencies.

For the Publishers

- As many other networks, the program is free to join for publishers.

- Publishers can maximise their revenues as TNX only charge a 12.5 % commission on transaction, which is one of the lowest in the market.

- Publishers can sell text links each page and therefore maximise the monetisation of their websites.

- The TNX program is more flexible than other paid links brokers. There is no PageRank or traffic requirements to join the prgram. TNX is therefore more open to smaller websites and blogs.

What is not so good about TNX

- Since October 2007, Google is actively working on detecting paid links that aim at passing some PageRank value. Google's webmasters guidelines clearly states that paid links should contains a 'nofollow' attribute and that link schemes will be penalised ( TNX does not use nofollow).
TNX has developed some clever features to avoid an easy detection from Google, but it is still on the edge of the giant guidelines. Any additional improvement of the Google alogorithm could result in TNX and its users (advertisers and publishers) to be penalised. Even if no major case has been identified, TNX users might be likely to be penalised in the future.

- TNX requires publishers to set up a code on their page. While not detectable at the moment, any improvement in Goolge alogrithm could easily detect the code and therefore penalise publishers.

- Advertisers can generate thousands of links at once, which can look a little bit suspicious too Google.

Overall TNX has a very attractive offer especially for small advertisers and publishers. Morevover, the entire TNX system has been designed wisely with a large range of features that make paid links a viable option in a link building strategy.
However TNX is at the mercy of Google's algorithm changes. Any improvement in paid links detection could have a dramatic impact on TNX and its users. As a result some caution is required.