I hopped on a Salmon boat in Alaska for four months in the middle of this series and lost track of it. Sorry about that.
If you’re just finding this article you might want to wander over to Part 1: SEO for Travel Bloggers – Crafting Keyword Specific Posts and start from the beginning as the concepts I’m going to cover today are built on the foundation of the previous articles in this series. We’ve talked about keywords, on page and off page SEO and the fundamentals of a link. Today I’m going to show you the four basic strategies I used to wildly increase my readership using a single cornerstone post.
This just in: Quality links to your site or blog will be the single most important SEO factor for the foreseeable future!
For today’s example I’m going to use one of the corner stone articles on freewheelings.com Finding Into the Wild’s Magic Bus and show you how I grew this one article from Search Engine obscurity to a number 1 ranking for my keywords and more than 5,000 views per month on average. Also notice that I have built quality traffic, less than one percent bounce rate and more than half the visitors moved along to another page on my blog and more than half returned to view the article again. These numbers are for one month. Also notice I outranked Wikipedia if you can believe it.
Using Cornerstone Articles as Link Builders
But all of my articles are great? Not really, most of them are good, but there are a few that outshine the rest and are your best work, right? Do you run a popular posts widget? Try it. See the 5 most popular articles. They are the ones that have been organically voted to the top, enjoyed by your readership, and they are your cornerstone articles. They are also the articles you should be using to get people to your site and make a good impression. They should be the target of some of your SEO efforts.
Using Comments for Backlinks
Tried and true, but here’s a new approach that I haven’t heard anybody talk about yet though I’m sure others are doing it. As we discussed, most blogs still follow comments. Instead of just putting your domain in URL field of the comments section try putting the URL to your post that is related to the post you’re commenting on. Also, in the name field you can always substitute the keywords of the post you put in the URL field for your actual name or your blog name. As long as you’re making a valuable contribution to the blog you are commenting on I doubt the moderator will bat an eye.
Join a Forum on the Topic
This is one of the best things you can do to get exposure for your article in the beginning. You can provide your article as a resource for the community as well as get it under the eyes of people who are active on the web, generally resulting in good, organic back links from your niche.
Spun and Relived
There are many article directories on the web where you can put a new spin or your topic and post an article with a link back to your original post. Ezinearticles comes to mind. It might be good to check out the Google pagerank of the directory that your submitting to first:
This concept doesn’t stop here. Why not setup another free blog on blogger or wordpress.com and create a ‘miniblog’ that links back to your original resource. I know, it sounds like a lot of work, but it could mean the difference between a Google pagerank of 11 for your keywords and a pagerank of 5 (SERP). While you’re at it:
I think it’s important that we touch back once more on the importance of cornerstone posts. Most travel bloggers cover a wide variety of locations and topics making it hard for our sites to narrow in on a theme more acute than just travel. Focusing our efforts to improve the search engine rankings of our best posts in their own niche will ultimately open us up to a wider audience with similar interests.
Next in the series: SEO for Travel Bloggers – Building a Link Wheel
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