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May 06

Text Link Ads Calculator

LBB Readers, we have just completed work on a tool that answers the timeless question of, âWhat is a link from my website worth?â  Our new Text Link Ads Calculator can help answer that question for webmasters. For potential link buyers out there, this tool can help you gauge what you might want to pay out in todayâs marketplace.

Our calculator factors in:

  • Traffic of your website â the lower the Alexa ranking, the higher the price.
  • Link popularity of your website â the more links (and more quality links), the higher the price.
  • Theme of your website – there is more demand for some themes than others.
  • Number of links to be sold â the fewer the number of links on a page, the higher the price.
  • Sitewide or single page placement â âsitewideâ vs. on a single page of your website (slightly more value given to links that appear sitewide).
  • Location on the page – more value when the links are placed in an area where they have the best chance of being clicked.

Please note a few things:

  • The price given by the calculator will not always directly correspond to prices in Text Link Adsâ inventory.
  • The tool is by no means exact, but is meant only to give a âballpark figureâ for link prices. There is wide variation in link pricing, and some of the automated factors in the pricing equation (such as Alexa) will always be imprecise.
  • The calculator values sitewide links higher than single page links, but that doesnât mean we generally recommend sitewide links. Sometimes the âmarketplaceâ doesnât mirror the true relative value of different types of links, as some buyers are still using outdated metrics in their valuations.

We are hoping this tool will give you an estimate of market prices of static html links and may help you improve the earning potential of your website (or if youâre a buyer, it may allow you to find some bargains to purchase links in your niche). Our Text Link Ads Calculator can be found here.  Please let us know what you think!

May 06

Google Doesn’t Like Linking Streetwalkers & the End of ‘Tri-engine’ SEO for Affiliates?

Eric Ward has published a new article titled, ahem, Are You A Link Whore? (My quick answer before I even read the article: YES!)

His philosphy is one that I think has hit webmasters harder than ever with the latest of BigDaddy.

Google is algorithmically rewarding my good linking behavior over the course of the past 13 years.

There can be no other explanation.  Google doesn’t like link whores.

His choice of language sure makes him a link baiter, but I don’t think anyone can argue with his point.

I can say with 100% confidence that you can be successful and rank well without having to do anything even close to slutty.

Two questions:

  • How does this philosophy change if you can’t/don’t want to wait 13 years (or even 3) to rank?
  • Why does everyone seem to ignore the "other two" engines? As far as I can tell they like their links ‘fast n loose’. They also send visitors that convert very well, especially for affiliates in many profitable sectors.

Which I guess leads me to a third question. Are we getting to a point where it’s more cost effective for affiliates to take an either/or approach to ranking in Google or MSN/Yahoo! ? In my experience, if you target both, it’s hard to do GREAT in either (For simplicity’s sake I’m lumping Yahoo! and MSN together as they both seem to reward linking in the same general way.)

Whereas if you target only one (either Google, or MSN/Yahoo!), you can focus in like a laser and get rankings pretty predictably. (Usually, that choice is dictated by domain age — 2 year old domain? Go Google. 1 year or younger? Go for MSN/Yahoo!)

(And by the way, I’m ignoring ‘brand’ sites and ecomm sites, because they a) are inherently less risk-tolerant than affiliates so are more prone to a 3-engine, non-aggressive strategy, and b) the stakes are possibly greater as getting banned/filtered in one engine would result in not showing up for ‘brandname’ searches, and of course c) they are less likely to be launching new sites.)

But back to my question: you readers who have recently launched new affiliate sites — are you doing ‘tri-engine SEO’? Are you taking a Google-centric approach? Or is MSN/Yahoo! your bread and butter?

I’ll go first: MSN/Yahoo! is my bread and butter for new affiliate sites. The tradeoff always comes down to this: I can do XYZ and it will probably screw the site in Google, when it may have ranked well there 2 years down the road — but I’ll rank in MSN in a month, and Yahoo! in three months. Or I can skip XYZ which will make ranking in Yahoo!/MSN impossible but hey who knows in 2 years Google may want to rank my site! Doesn’t even seem like much of a choice, to me…

May 06

I Can’t Rank for ‘Purple Widgets’… but I Rank for ‘Purple’?

So I have a new (quality) page up on a semi-sandboxed site. The page is optimized for purple widgets. As the resident link monkey, I made sure that no less than 10 out of the top 100 ranking pages (for purple widgets, on G) linked to us.

Predictably, the page isn’t currently ranking in the top 100 on a search for purple widgets. I do expect it to pop out, as, like I said, the site is only semi-sandboxed, and this particular page has all of those legit, relevant, themed links.

But here’s the kicker: the page ranks #11 now on a search for just purple! LBB readers… wtf? You got any explanation? (Before you say "OOP", please note that I wasn’t so stupid as to only use purple widgets as the anchor text — we got a lot of variation, including the odd "click here" and "" and whatnot.)

Results 1100 of about 701,000 for purple widgets

Results 1100 of about 2,560,000 for purple

Finally, note that neither purple widgets nor purple are competitive or "money" terms — but widgets in general is an extremely competitive affiliate space.

A little help please? :-)

May 06

…And Now For Something Completely Different

Excerpt from Webmaster’s SEO Lament

By Madeleine "Mad" Kane

(Sing to "My Favorite Things"  from "The Sound of Music.")

Read On