It’s a great question. We typically don’t plan the distribution. We sort of set some rails on, if we see that we are exceeding certain boundaries. We pull back our adjust strategy, it’s best to come back up. When we do an initial link audit for a client, depending on their budgets we can do more indefinitely currents or more high level. For those that we do, we evaluate competitors backlink profiles to look at both the dispersion of domain authority. It flows to their link, like there are pages. Their home page has more domain authority and as you go longtail to the site the curve generally looks like this.
We also look at all of the primary landing pages and look at the branded versus unbranded anchor text distributions. Again, not to establish this is our target goal, but to get an understanding of what is considered an acceptable pattern for the particular space. You can imagine the credit card or mesothelioma space.
If you look at the branded versus unbranded anchor text distribution, you’ll see it is skewed much higher in favor of money keywords. As you get into more informational type queries and less overtly commercial queries then you start to see that tails off to be a lot more a higher percentage of branded anchor text than unbranded.
You can also take a look at a tool that we have built. I think it’s on the removehim.com website. It pulls your backlink profile from miles and then evaluates both the raw anchor text for that domain like the anchor text of each different keyword phrase itself and also looks at the domain mozrank passed per anchor text because it’s not just the volume of links. When you’re looking at it you might also notice that for sites that are obviously manipulating the file. There is a much higher amount of mozrank passed on links with a particular anchor text than there are for sites that have been more natural backlink profile.
So when we start a link building campaign, we want to look for each of our competitors and see what are those thresholds like the sites that are ranking in the top five. Their thresholds sort of established that upper limit if like, we would never want to cross that threshold.
I think this is where that sort of approached SEO is really starting to shift for a lot of agencies. We don’t know what percentage of those backlinks have been disallowed, Google has decided not to give any credit for, just naturally and we’ve ran into this a number of times. You might see sites that have this incredibly high distribution of links towards money keywords and their ranking and then there’s no way that was acceptable.
They’ve obviously gone through the process of having a penalty attempt, disallowing a bunch of domains and that data ends up a bit skewed. So when I answered your question initially, I said, we try not to set any one hard boundaries for a number or percentage. We try to just set up rails and want to get as natural an anchor text profile as possible.
So we’ll work, for example, with a PR agency. We hope our clients have a PR firm, we can help coordinate with one. Before we do any type of money keyword link building we’ve got a very well established base of brand. We want Google to understand that the most important part about this business is who they are and not what they offer. Anybody can sell widgets but not anybody can be Acme Widget Corp.
If Acme Widget Corp is the one that gets all the authority, then Google will say what is it about this company that makes them so successful? And then they’ll rely more heavily on the content and the relevance they find in the content they’re discovering to way that site for a particular keyword phrase and the anchor text of the links that were coming. So for every company, we want to establish as natural backlink profile as possible, focusing on brand and so forth.
Then reserve any type of attempts to manipulate the backlink profile in a more sniping fashion. So we need to rank for this particular keyword. We’re tapping out at position three or four. Our technical is perfect or on-site is perfect, we just can’t break this hump. We can see that the competitors are taking this approach to link building in this case like actively manipulating the profile. Then we pursue some more aggressively backlink strategies. But outside of that, we want to carry on with the brand and the experience to carry the link.
It sounds cheesy. It’s somebody who 10-12 years ago would take one hundred thousand dollar budget from clients for ninety nine thousand dollars on links. That’s not the way that I would approach it. 10 years ago I would be kicking myself and today it’s just not worth it. I think a lot of that, because our clients tend to care more about their brand and longevity and search results.
That’s not to say that you shouldn’t consider spinning up a secondary website that targets particular keywords or audience for region purpose. Have your way with it, but it should be for science and that it comes with great risk. So as long as you’re prepared for that hammering links, that’s your prerogative. Go for it.