The web is evolving at a rapid pace. As broadband speeds continue to increase and every single person in the world goes online (including your pets), the number of social properties being created is increasing everyday. This provides lots of opportunities for communities to be built around specific interests and professions. It also provides ample opportunities for the Graffiti boys of the web to get in and tag them all in their own unique way.
Web2.0 was characterized by the rise of sites like facebook, wikipedia, squidoo, twitter, webpaint, hub pages, etc etc. These were community driven and allowed users to host their content in a variety of places. People reached out and formed relationships with like minded people. It gave users (and the blogging community) a place to create social profiles, get their content viewed and engage in conversations with people they have never met before on topics close to their hearts. But all this is the BORING stuff, what it really did was provide an orgy of linking opportunities.
Wikipedia and Blogs were the first real target of the SEO Graffit boys. Back when Wikipedia was rising in popularity, the SEO Graffiti boys were busy making themselves editors and covertly dropping links to their own sites. They visited hundreds of blogs per day and left jaw dropping comments with great insights such as:
“wow great post, www.linktome.com, www.pleaselinktome.com, www.ahcomeonlinktome.com”
(Note, the sites above are totally made up, if any of them are actual sites, I really had no idea.)
For this very reason the nofollow tag was invented to save both Wikipedia and blogs from the Graffiti boys. Although it should be noted, Wikipedia can still be semi hacked to ensure your page overtakes them in Google. I don’t condone this, so won’t share the strategy here 🙂
The nofollow tag has been adopted by a lot of the other big social properties such as facebook and twitter. But there are thousands of other social properties being created each day that do not have a nofollow tag switched on. These are prime targets for the graffiti boys.
The Graffiti Goldmine
We can think of social properties as a group of people setting up a community center where interested parties can come and hang out. They are all having a great time until the graffiti boys happen to find it as an ideal place to tag with their signature. Once they find it, spray cans are duly whipped out and the building is tagged to death. What does SEO graffiti look like. Well it may be something like this:
Now these are just two posts from a thread on a social site that allows comments on a particular topic. What you may be thinking now is this guy is ranting about SEO guys messing up social media sites. Well actually, no you are wrong and maybe this post isn’t very well structured.
In previous posts I stated, I do not take the high road in terms of any strategy that is used to get links. No one working in this industry or at least those who have a real passion for it, can say they have never dabbled in aggressive tactics (the above is an extreme case). Obtaining links from social sites in a more intelligent way really does work. I know because I tested it on a wordpress site setup for a particular market. In under 6 weeks I brought in over 4k uniques per month, just from targeting a couple of keywords via social links.
The point I would make about the graffiti boys is they are clueless in how to use social properties to gain links. The examples given above were on a page that was spammed to death. Thousands of links on the same page. The page had no PR, so this is thousands of links sharing no PR.
If you are going to put on a grey, black, purple hat, at least understand some of the basic concepts. The sledge hammer approach to linking really is a waste of time.
Hmm this post was a little all over the place. If you agree, then why not RETWEET ABOUT THE GRAFFITI BOYS