Following a series of interviews with François from Linkody, we have agreed to publish a guest post in which I give an update on my history, services, team, customers and how I work with the Linkody tool.
Mozalami was born out of a passion for SEO that has lasted for 10 years now without faltering despite the many times when was announced the death of our profession. On this subject, I would just like to remind that as long as humans use the search engines to find online content, in any form whatsoever (text, image, video …) one will need SEO experts to optimize these contents for search engines. Why? Because the search engines are visually impaired machines and it will always be necessary to use the techniques themselves described in the guidelines of the engines be it Google or Bing.
But we do not limit ourselves to the instructions of the engines which can be generalist, we carry out a daily work of surveillance to identify the new techniques and the recommendations of the search engines’ communicators. Everyone knows Matt Cutts, but many others have taken over the relay like John Mueller and Gary Illyes who are followed via Google+ and Twitter.
My story began with a web agency that I had set up in Morocco in 2004 and which specialized in the design of digital media (websites, presentation CDs, emails …) but I soon realized that SEO was THE Activity that generated the best ROI in time for my hungry customers for visits and conversions.
So, I immigrated to Canada in 2009 to start an e-commerce course at HEC Montréal and then joined CGI, one of the biggest computer engineering firms in the world, as an internet strategy consultant. Subsequently, I joined the Yellow Pages Canada group and especially their major account division where I was involved in the SEO strategy for world-class companies. In 2013, I took the plunge and set up my own business to offer my SEO consulting services in Canada and around the world.
My clients are mainly very big companies with big needs in internet marketing and whose SEO contributes in an essential way to their success online. They are large telecommunication companies, music companies, travel companies, etc. The common element they have is a strong online and offline awareness so that a good content strategy and a powerful website are enough to appear in the first results of Google and Bing. But, we need always to tweak the link profile to include target keywords in text anchors because natural linking is always keyword agnostic!
I work as an independent SEO consultant but it does not mean that I act alone! I rely on 3 resource people to help me in my daily work: an integrator who makes the on-site changes, an SEO-trained editor for content alignment and a link builder that allows me to implement my Link building strategies.
Speaking of Link building, I like this new recent release of Garry Illyes where he insists on the importance of external links despite all that is said or can be said on the web about the decrease of this signal very important in the eyes of search engines. As Barry Schwartz reported in his blog on November 11, 2016:
Dawn Anderson this morning ask Gary Illyes from Google if he was referring to external links or internal links. External links are links you get from third-party websites, internal links are links you control within your site. Gary said he was referring to external links.
He said on Twitter, “I was referring to external ones. Those links translate in some sense to popularity and endorsement by others.”
It is in this context that I use Linkody to monitor my links and keep a precise inventory that allows me to gauge the risk and the opportunity according to the backlink profile.
I’ve known Linkody through my Google searches to find a tool that allows me to monitor my Link building campaigns. Before I looked at Google Console, took the latest backlinks and made it a pretty figure that shows the progress (Pivot Table).
But the problem with Google, and even more with the tools like Majestic, aHrefs and Moz, is that they show only a sample of backlinks and still Google hides them voluntarily as announced:
Not all links to your site may be listed. This is normal. In addition, Google has recently made improvements to how we gather and display link data (for example, link counts now include links redirected using 301 or 302 redirects). As a result, you may see a change in the number of links displayed for your site.
So, my need is defined as follows:
- Keep an inventory of my backlinks so I do not waste time
- Monitor the activity of SEO campaign managers
- Finally, make reports to my clients with necessary information like the DA, PA …
What I think to date, Linkody is a great and very powerful tool provided well used. Their registration, use and billing service is TOP. The platform is accessible to perform a number of calculations in a reasonable time and the site is UP all the time!
Now, my way of using the service is as follow:
- Creation of property and collection of the first backlinks discovered by Linkody who takes care to look for them on the most popular Linkscapes
- Tag links to categorize them: type, linkbuilder…
- Retrieve reports for clients with reliable metrics
- Add links that have been built during the period (1 month)
- Use Linkody’s Analytics to see the distribution of links
I adore the tool for this part and especially that the price is reasonable! But there are things to improve in the tool as I had the opportunity to discuss with François directly.
Link building strategy
As reported by Moz in their latest Ranking factors study, the link building part of SEO strategy accounts for at least for 30 % even more if we add Domain Level brand features which is better shown using the infographic from Rand Fishkin presentation (2013):
In any Link building strategy, there is planning, implementation, and monitoring. Although for planning I still use very little Linkody, it can prove very powerful in analyzing the backlink profile of its competitors. This is easy with the tool: one can monitor the backlinks of its competitors, which is essential in the design of the strategy. Here under, we uncover the different aspects of competitors’ analysis.
Volume and Type of backlinks
Here we mainly analyze the amount of incoming (external) links and see their overall impact on the competing domains: Moz Domain Authority and Spam Score, Moz Rank and Moz Trust. Linkody reports all these indicators, the MozRank is a metric that indicates the world popularity of the domain, calculated in a similar way to Google PageRank, and MozTrust is like MozRank, but instead of measuring link popularity, it indicates confidence index.
Distribution of the quality of the backlinks
Here we will return in more detail to the quality of incoming links by identifying:
- Distribution of low-quality incoming links
- Links direction
- Dofollow versus Nofollow Links
I consider all DA between 0 to 20 as low quality. This would correspond to a PR of 0 or 1 so very little useful in SEO strategy. The direction of the links shows those which go to the deep pages versus those which go to the Home.
Analysis of text anchors
With the advent of Penguin and Over SEO as automatic or manual penalties, this is the most sensitive part of the analysis. It should be noted that Google does not strike a whole domain in general but rather on specific keywords on which a campaign of acquisition of backlinks with optimized anchors texts has been conducted.
Contextual analysis of links
For this type of analysis, we need Linkody because we are looking for where these links come from:
- Distribution of TLDs
- Origins of backlinks by country
- Types of links by industry
General Domain Authority Comparison
This is my favorite analysis because it is fast and gives a general overview of the backlinks profile by domain type. The lowest are those known as directories, web 2.0, sites hit by Penguin… The strongest are those that interest us:
Whether it is to design your Link building strategy or to monitor the implementation, especially if you have several Link builders, Linkody is an indispensable tool that allows you to keep an inventory of your links and If necessary build a Disavow file if you are hit by a penalty like Penguin, although in its latest version it is supposed to demote these fraudulent backlinks instead of impacting the entire Target site.
I then recommend Linkody to any SEO agency or independent consultant who wants to keep an eye on his backlink profile without losing sight of that of his competitors!