What I’ve Learned Auditing and Removing Unnatural Links


The past year has meant I have spent a lot of time doing something I’ve never had to do before, and something only a small number of SEO’s specialised in before April 2012. Over the past year I have worked with at least one site per month that has received a link penalty of a manual or algorithmic nature.

When should you clean up?

If you’ve received an unnatural link warning or you have seen a significant decrease in rankings around the time of a penguin update then you need to take action as soon as possible.

google link warning message

If however your site is ranking fine but you are sat on a site with a number of shady links in your link profile then it all depends upon your niche and your risk profile. In these situations I would rather build some more high quality links than start a major link cleanup exercise.

Get as much Link Data as you can

The mistake too many people make is just relying on one or two soruces of data for their Link Audits. Personally I will try to obtain as much data as possible from ahrefs, Majestic, OSE, Google Webmaster Tools and any reports the client might have from past SEO agencies. Continue reading

Why Do People Share Content?

In my recent content strategy post I told you that I would be writing up some articles on how to promote the hell out of the content you had created.

image001I think it’s important for anyone involved in digital marketing to understand what will motivate someone to share your content and when they are most inclined to do so you can develop the next step in your strategy.

Most marketers have a good grasp of the Extrinsic Motivators (price, features, benefits) of a product or a piece of content but we often struggle with the Intrinsic Motivators (how does the product align to a person’s feelings or goals). People are thinking feelers not feeling thinkers.

What do we know about People?

  • we depend on mental models
  • we want to be in control
  • we don’t like change
  • we’re not great at remembering
  • we love a good story
  • we are highly visual by nature
  • we do have some limitations
  • we are social creatures
  • we’re curious
  • we don’t want to put in a lot of effort
  • we love patterns
  • we make mistakes

Continue reading

Psychology and Advertising – Video

As a bit of a psychology fiend I just wanted to share this video I found a few days ago on Youtube which explains the different ways in which advertisers use persuasive psychological techniques in their advertising campaigns.

The video covers peripheral messaging and it got me thinking about it’s correlation with online marketing.

The concept of peripheral advertising is essentially what the term implies; the marketing is conducted as a secondary effort to the main project, promoting the product or service tangentially.

The other element of the video I thought would be useful was the way in which people are influenced by colours and the associations we have with them. Something to consider the next time you are designing a landing page or infographic.

Anyway it’s only a few minutes long and you never know you might learn something new :)