What SEO is best for your forum?

SoFlo

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Jun 9, 2013
Messages
223
I am wanting to preform some SEO work on my new forum without having to pay a lot of $ for someone to do it. I know there is good amounts of work involved but I'd like to try.

What kind of SEO is good to do? Or what does everybody do?

I know how to submit to link directories and placing my url in my forum sigs and other blogs.
 

gogoblender

shiny happy pantless
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
15,300
I am wanting to preform some SEO work on my new forum without having to pay a lot of $ for someone to do it. I know there is good amounts of work involved but I'd like to try.

What kind of SEO is good to do? Or what does everybody do?

I know how to submit to link directories and placing my url in my forum sigs and other blogs.


I'm not sure I understand what you're asking. The first thing any forum needs to be successful is content.

Check out some of the answers I've written up for you in some of your older posts here.

Is your Article Writing coming along yet?

You'll need a fair bit of solid writing on your forum for SEO to work and give you results.

If you don't have articles or content, that's where you need to start first.

:)

gogo
 

SoFlo

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Jun 9, 2013
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223
I guess I meant by link directories and such.

Whats the best way to build incoming links?
 

gogoblender

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Other sites will naturally link to you if you have good content.
:)

gogo
 

EddieC

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Messages
313
Directory submissions are not the SEO miracle they once were, and too many will see your site penalised. It's still worth submitting to niche-relevant directories if only for the bit of traffic it can send your way, but if you submit to a few hundred don't expect to be anywhere to be seen on Google!

Contrary to what many seem to think, you can rank a site without much content. However in the case of a forum you can have the best rankings in the world but none of the traffic you generate will sign up if they don't find anything interesting. I have a forum on page one of Google for a very popular search term but I don't have the time to invest in it at present - it gets thousands of visitors but only one or two signups per month that don't go on to post anything.
 

gogoblender

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I have a forum on page one of Google for a very popular search term but I don't have the time to invest in it at present - it gets thousands of visitors but only one or two signups per month that don't go on to post anything.


Eddie, I don't understand this. If on this new forum of yours, Google is assigning you a first page ranking on a popular term, why would Google do this unless you have any content worth reading and compelling to readers for a forum

Can you give more info ?


:)

gogo
 

Jack_Rouse

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Eddie, I don't understand this. If on this new forum of yours, Google is assigning you a first page ranking on a popular term, why would Google do this unless you have any content worth reading and compelling to readers for a forum

Can you give more info ?


:)

gogo

Because SEO isn't a matter of just doing one thing right, it's a combination of several.
 

gogoblender

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I agree with you

Is it possible to tell us the top three that can have us make a forum with no content that google will rank on page one?

:)

gogo
 

EddieC

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Messages
313
Is it possible to tell us the top three that can have us make a forum with no content that google will rank on page one?

I did say without much content - there has to be some! Also, you can't really give a top three - like Jack says it's a combination of several things. Get all the following right and you should be able to see page one for most keywords:

On Page

Keywords in domain

People say EMD's are dead, but only poorly made ones are. If you get everything else right they're still incredibly powerful - I had a site at #1 spot with only 3 pages of proper content and 9 backlinks for an 8k search term using an EMD.

Keywords in title tag

Use your keywords as part of a sentence, do some long-tail research to find good additional keywords to optimise for in the title tag.

Use header tags

These days keywords in your header tags make the smallest of differences if any, but the fact you have header tags will make a difference as Google takes good page structure into consideration.

Use keywords in alt tags for images

Don't try to stuff your keyword in every alt tag, but use it a few times where relevant and make sure every image contains an alt tag.

Add privacy policy & contact pages

Massively overlooked by many people, but these small factors add a lot of legitimacy to a site in Google's eyes.

Customise your template

If you're using a default template or even one that uses the identical HTML to the default but with a different stylesheet, Google's site quality algo picks up on this. Use a template that doesn't match the default - it doesn't have to be massively rearranged as long as it includes some different elements in the HTML. If you're building a small site and you know how, completely coding your own site can work wonders - the site I mentioned earlier sitting at #1 with hardly any backlinks is an example of this. Google now seems to love sites that have 100% unique code, I assume the reasoning is that site owners have either taken the time to code it themselves or have paid someone to do it, so aren't likely to be a fly-by-night.

Off Page

Build a backlink profile

Everyone's aware you need backlinks to rank, most people are aware you need quality backlinks to rank, but not a lot of people are aware of the need to have a natural backlink profile. Make sure that your backlinks come from a range of high PR & low PR sites, both tld's and web 2.0 subdomains, come from a mixture of blogpost links, sidebar links & footer links - with emphasis on the blogpost links - have your main keyword making up 25% of your anchor texts, a mix of secondary keywords & your brand name making up another 20%, generic terms like 'click here' or 'read more' making up another 20%, and raw url links making up the remaining 30%.

Build social signals

Get shares on Facebook, Twitter, G+, Stumbleupon & Digg

Build backlinks to your backlinks

You don't need to worry about homepage links, but building backlinks to the blogposts that you have managed to get your link included in can help add a lot more authority to those links. The links don't need to be the highest quality, a load of web 2.0's & social bookmarks will do the trick.


Get all these factors right and you will rank on page 1 without much content.
 

gogoblender

shiny happy pantless
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
15,300
I did say without much content - there has to be some! Also, you can't really give a top three - like Jack says it's a combination of several things. Get all the following right and you should be able to see page one for most keywords:

On Page

Keywords in domain

People say EMD's are dead, but only poorly made ones are. If you get everything else right they're still incredibly powerful - I had a site at #1 spot with only 3 pages of proper content and 9 backlinks for an 8k search term using an EMD.

Keywords in title tag

Use your keywords as part of a sentence, do some long-tail research to find good additional keywords to optimise for in the title tag.

Use header tags

These days keywords in your header tags make the smallest of differences if any, but the fact you have header tags will make a difference as Google takes good page structure into consideration.

Use keywords in alt tags for images

Don't try to stuff your keyword in every alt tag, but use it a few times where relevant and make sure every image contains an alt tag.

Add privacy policy & contact pages

Massively overlooked by many people, but these small factors add a lot of legitimacy to a site in Google's eyes.

Customise your template

If you're using a default template or even one that uses the identical HTML to the default but with a different stylesheet, Google's site quality algo picks up on this. Use a template that doesn't match the default - it doesn't have to be massively rearranged as long as it includes some different elements in the HTML. If you're building a small site and you know how, completely coding your own site can work wonders - the site I mentioned earlier sitting at #1 with hardly any backlinks is an example of this. Google now seems to love sites that have 100% unique code, I assume the reasoning is that site owners have either taken the time to code it themselves or have paid someone to do it, so aren't likely to be a fly-by-night.

Off Page

Build a backlink profile

Everyone's aware you need backlinks to rank, most people are aware you need quality backlinks to rank, but not a lot of people are aware of the need to have a natural backlink profile. Make sure that your backlinks come from a range of high PR & low PR sites, both tld's and web 2.0 subdomains, come from a mixture of blogpost links, sidebar links & footer links - with emphasis on the blogpost links - have your main keyword making up 25% of your anchor texts, a mix of secondary keywords & your brand name making up another 20%, generic terms like 'click here' or 'read more' making up another 20%, and raw url links making up the remaining 30%.

Build social signals

Get shares on Facebook, Twitter, G+, Stumbleupon & Digg

Build backlinks to your backlinks

You don't need to worry about homepage links, but building backlinks to the blogposts that you have managed to get your link included in can help add a lot more authority to those links. The links don't need to be the highest quality, a load of web 2.0's & social bookmarks will do the trick.


Get all these factors right and you will rank on page 1 without much content.

Love all this awesome info you posted Eddie, for new forum creators, this can certainly help, it can give someone an idea for how much work goes into a forum, especially with social signals, etc...

But the main focus still has to be content if you want to make revenue.

Putting out marketing and ads to a forum with no content is like inviting people over to a garden with nothing in it, right? ;)

Of course, I'd say that expectations are much more aggressive these days, people want that jingle of the coin faster in their pocket.

For that, a marketing master would have great value, but unless that content is there, google won't make people like me pay money to put an add on a site like that...

right?

:)

gogo
 
Last edited:

EddieC

Adherent
Joined
May 12, 2008
Messages
313
You can still make a small amount of money, but definitely content is the key to engagement & growth. Like I say for all the visitors I get to the forum I have on page one I barely get any members as there are no engaging discussions for them to get stuck into.
 

Jack_Rouse

Use The Force
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
1,393
The worst one to optimise on any forum is the alt tag, when speaking of images, it's not just the ones in posts you have to consider, when Google crawls your site it looks at EVERY image, from the smallest Icon, to the largest attachment, ensuring they all have "alt" tasks is a mammoth task in itself.

Another thing to consider is a friendly 404 page, if you site is producing soft 404's these are dead ends which bots are returning a page not found for, constructing a friendly 404 page with a link back to index.php stops this happening.
 

EddieC

Adherent
Joined
May 12, 2008
Messages
313
Good advice there Jack - knew I missed something out!

And yes, adding alt tags to every image is a pain, but it really is worthwhile.
 

Theadora

Aspirant
Joined
Jul 14, 2013
Messages
11
We should think of bigger picture first..

And the bigger picture is content! If your forum has content and content is posted regularly and naturally it would help grow your forum.

At first, you may not have good number of members in your forum so you need to take help of quality paid forum posters who would develop your forum in term of content creation.

You can also promote your forum in other related forums via signature link and you would be able to bring some members into your forum.
 

tahuuson

Neophyte
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
6
You need an in-depth and quality content. Share on social network. I think that's the best way for your site!
 

tracymw

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Nov 14, 2006
Messages
1,145
Are there any legit SEO companies out there that don't charge out of the ying yang?
 

Jack_Rouse

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Are there any legit SEO companies out there that don't charge out of the ying yang?

Tracy there is nothing SEO wise you cannot do yourself, and yes all companies charge the earth, finding one that does it properly is the problem.
 
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