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Welcome to another episode of Live SEO Support!
Live SEO Support is an hour-long Weekly Livestream where our founders, Nicholas Altimore and Chris Tzitzis, take questions from the audience on anything related to SEO.
But in case you missed us live this week, here’s the full episode:
This Week’s Archived Livestream:
[10:42] (site audit) A complete automotive site: It’s been growing month-on-month until it got hit during last May’s update and lost more traffic during September’s core updates. I’m still doing stuff to give it strength and growth. What do you think?
The site had over 116,000 traffic then went down to about 78,000, and now it seems to be leveling off. The site itself looks good, but the articles are pretty lacking because they’re full of stock images and walls of text. You’ve broken up your H2s into bullet points, but why not make those bullet points H3s instead? Dial in your search intent because this is what tends to be continually refined with algo updates. Also, out of your 3000 referring domains, about 2000 are Web 2.0s. Other than all of that, your site is actually doing really well, so, before you start disavowing, take some of your budget and work on higher-end links and see what that does. If you don’t get any movement out of that in two or three months, you can start considering a disavow. But I’d be hesitant about doing that anyway because you still have a lot of traffic. In this case, you’d be better off doing a portion of a disavow for one month, seeing what happens, and then doing another portion if little is happening. Cautiously drip-feed the links you want to disavow.
[27:56] What’s going on with the October update?
Everyone is still trying to figure it out. I’ve noticed it more on on-page factors than off-page. A lot of sites with supporting content found that they weren’t very useful anymore.
[29:12] How can we create bulk AI content?
We haven’t messed around with that too much yet. But if you want to create a project that lasts for the long term, we’d highly recommend thoroughly editing the content that the AI gives you rather than just throwing it up unedited.
[31:10] I want to include a table of contents in my larger articles for navigation. Would it be bad to have those as anchor links?
That’s completely fine. Tons of sites are doing that.
[33:42] (site audit) This site has been stuck at around 45,000 sessions for the past six months. I believe the issue is authority since the niche is pretty competitive, but all of the competing sites use a different link-building strategy. For example, one competitor has nearly fifty 301 redirects in the past year. There is also another competitor which was built on a large expired domain but doesn’t seem to be doing much active link-building. My site ranks at the bottom of page 1 and page 2 for some big keywords, but I’m debating which direction to take it.
It looks like a lot of black hat stuff is being done in your niche. You can do a lot more to theme the site around your city to give it more relevance. The permalink or URL is going to tell Google the most about what a page is about. It’s a huge ranking factor, so you want to put that geographic relevance in there at some point. I would make the home page more newspaper-style (more crawlable). I would also do some sidebar linking. From an on-page standpoint, things are relatively good. On the overview in Ahrefs, you have 756 referring domains with a DR of 13—that’s not very high authority. A lot of the anchors are spammy, and there is a lot of exact-match from Web 2.0s. Your off-page has a lot to be desired. Finally, if you don’t plan on expanding outside your city, you could try to look for a very relevant 301 specific to that city.
[54:52] Backlinks from forums (not in the same niche) where the thread for that topic is related to the niche: Are they good and helpful?
Sure. The whole forum doesn’t have to be about your specific niche. If a post on the forum has to do with your niche, then it absolutely makes sense. Forums are communities of people. The internet is not as cut-and-dry as a lot of people make it out to be. A lot of people go so hardcore with backlink relevance that their brain goes out the window and they forget what the real world looks like. As long as the thread on the forum makes sense, it can absolutely be relevant.
[58:25] What advice do you have on Google’s helpful content update?
First of all, know that you’re not alone. Second of all, nobody really knows what’s happening yet. It’s getting harder and harder to dissect algorithm updates. As far as backlinks go, not much has changed for a very long time.
[1:13:16] Does the date in a URL influence ranking in SEO Google SERPs?
Absolutely. We don’t put dates anywhere. The only place they make sense to be are news-based websites.
[1:15:43] Is the .download extension good for SEO?
We have no preference when it comes to TLDs. The biggest consideration is how users might feel about it. The older generation tends to be wary of TLDs nowadays.
[1:18:31] Does it make sense to talk in first-person content, keeping in mind that I’m not an affiliate marketer but use AdSense to monetize? This is regarding the helpful content update.
It depends on the content that you’re writing. If it’s super technical, then it won’t make sense to write in first person. But with product reviews or travel blogs, it would be a good idea to write from first-hand experience.
[1:20:38] What if I build pillow links from the same domains regularly? Obviously, the page URLs of the links would be unique, but I wonder if having links from the same domains would negatively affect rankings.
I wouldn’t say it would negatively affect rankings. If you had ten different links from CNN articles, it wouldn’t be bad for you. Using the same domains won’t hurt your rankings, but In a perfect world, it would be better to get links from unique domains.
Hey I’m Chris, one of the founders here at SirLinksalot. I’m into building internet money machines (affiliate websites) and specialize in building backlinks. Find out more about me and my link building team.
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