If you want to have a popular, hot blog, you’ve got to post regularly and keep in touch with your network of users, friends, and fellow bloggers.
If you’re lazy, you can still get away with good search rankings and traffic without much effort at all. At least for a while.
Just how lazy?
My latest experiment in website building could be considered a test of the limits of inactivity, and I really can’t complain. What other job will give you a six month vacation without effecting your income too much? Apparently, owning a blog can.
Unfortunately, inactivity won’t work forever. Just over the last few weeks I’ve noticed a bit of a drop in affiliate leads and conversions, and at first I figured it was just a matter of the economy slowing down. However, as of this morning it is apparent that some of my best keyword rankings are starting to drop off slowly from where they used to be.
The cause seems fairly straight forward. Just because I was happy with my ranks and traffic doesn’t mean the competitors were content to sit behind me and watch me cash the checks they wanted. With one search phrase bringing in $500-$1000 a month in revenues, it was just a matter of time before someone else came along to contest the ranks – or specifically, for someone who had previously lost ground to get back in the game and start acquiring backlinks.
The dreaded link-buying competitor
And as I’ve mentioned in the past, many of my fiercest competitors are routinely buying links from bidding directories and websites that sell sponsorship. As I’ve stated before though, I do not buy or sell any links to or from my site for a variety of reasons. Primary among those is that trading cash for backlinks can be a risky business in regard to how Google treats your website, but I also don’t like forking out money for something I can find for free myself.
Sadly, it seems like buying links might be a decent strategy anyway because the main competition I’ve seen is from people who are blatantly bidding up every cheap directory they can find. Sitewide links from sponsored themes seems to be another winning plan – at least in the short run.
For now and the foreseeable future, though, I’ll be sticking to my original operational strategy and doing what I can to encourage organic link growth through social media and auxiliary websites. What about you, how do you build up the backlinks in an increasingly competitive SEO environment?