(Hey Luiz, I am using Chris Dyson’s image from your blog as its hard to find his pictures on internet)
This is my opinion and I could be completely wrong here but I think UK got the smartest brains when it comes to SEO and Digital Marketing. I read many different blogs on regular basis and many who inspire me are coming from the United Kingdom.
Today, I am interviewing someone who is in the top 10 list of my favorite SEOs from a very long time. He is smart, intelligent and mind blowing when it comes to sharing SEO stuff within the community. Although, he calls himself the student of SEO but in real he is actually an SEO Guru. My guest for today is a very talented SEO from UK, Chris Dyson.
Chris helps his clients with reference to SEO. He also writes about SEO and shares his link building as well as content marketing tactics on his blog Triple SEO. In my opinion, Chris does not need much introduction as I am sure his answers will speak for him.
Chris, Thank you very much for your time and allowing me to interview you!
So without further Ado, Here are my questions.
I wouldn’t say I was a prominent name in the industry, but I did kind of fall in to SEO like a lot of people.
I setup music blog in 2006 and after a few weeks I was getting quite a bit of traffic from other blogs and some social media sites such as Myspace, however when it came to search traffic I wasn’t getting much at all. I decided to find out how people ranked their sites in Google or Yahoo and from there an obsession was born.
After a while I started building made for Adsense sites after seeing how well people such as Shoemoney were bringing in tens of thousands of dollars per month. I was doing ok and before long I was bringing in as much money from all my spammy little sites as I did from my 9-5 corporate day job as a project manager, around this time I started doing more Google friendly SEO for friends and family.
Then a couple of years ago I was made redundant from my role for a global healthcare company and decided to make a go of it myself, I signed up to Twitter, setup a blog and started joining the conversation, I guess some people started listening.
I didn’t! I had not taken a holiday since Christmas 2010 – I just took 3 weeks off this Christmas.
Working for yourself is tough, sometimes you don’t know when the next contract will land, will my client pay his invoice on time and more often than not I would take on lots of work which meant working 70+ hour weeks because I found it difficult to turn down the work.
Several times I wanted to cut down on client work and do my own projects but the lure of money now rather than a few months down the line stopped me saying no. I’ve now started working full time at Hit Reach and really looking forward to focusing more on the areas I am strongest such as SEO and UX while having a team of designers and developers who are capable of turning around great content and tools for our clients.
If you want to build a business online and for it to last then you need to be willing to spend a lot more than $300 per month
I agree there was a lot of change in SEO over the past year or so – a lot of SEO’s are starting to rebrand themselves and really look at their service offerings, some SEO’s are rebranding and doing the same crap they were before.
I’ll disagree on Google’s ability to fight spam though, they have managed to get a grip of some people who practiced a level of moderate risk SEO, people who scaled low risk SEO tactics such as Infographics, article marketing, public link networks and flooded the web with 400 word “unique” articles and hundreds of exact match anchors to their clients home page. What Google haven’t got a grip on is people who carry out a churn and burn operation who exploit Google’s love of fresh content and links.
I think it’s important to remember that Google have admitted that their best method of fighting spam is to break the spirit of spammers, so just let that sink in the next time you’re reading a Matt Cutts blog post or watching one of his videos. Google are not your friend, they want to make money – just like you, trust yourself, test the stuff you read and ultimately the SERP’s and your rank tracker are the true north.
In 2014 you will need to continue to assess the risk with the way you carry out SEO as we always have – after all do you go for a high risk strategy and make quick money or do you play the long game.
On page SEO is still very important and in some instances small amendments can make big changes.
Every website should make sure it’s crawlable, is optimized for performance and have a well-defined information architecture.
Everything else depends upon the strategic goals of the website and should be tested to see if it has any benefit for you.
The hard thing about link baiting is knowing that you’re going to mess up a lot. Honestly to begin with you will have a lot more failures than you will success – but this process is what helps you improve. There are few people who can hit a home run almost every time and those that can have been struck out more times than you’ve had hot dinners.
You really need to know your audience, understand how and why people share content online and understand how far to go when you push people’s buttons.
I mean you could create some link bait aimed at a particular group due to their religious beliefs, that would probably get you links from the press and shares all over social media but at the same time tarnish your brand – you have to know where to draw the line.
Ahrefs – for me it offers the most insight into link profiles, I also like Majestic too they have some nice ways of displaying their data.
Buzstream – up until a few months ago I had been using Google Docs or spreadsheets but I must admit it’s really helping keep things organized and speed up my processes.
Check My Links chrome plugin lets me see quickly if there are any broken links on a page quickly.
It can certainly help to have some relationships ahead of time – that’s an area that PR pros are really strong as they are seeding ideas or content often weeks in advance of a product launch. Building up their network in advance – a lot of SEO’s seem to be more reactionary and don’t spend as much time planning their outreach plan ahead of time – relying on a press release and a few templates fired out.
You can of course still build links without relationships – I’ve written before about tactics you can use if you are in that situation – but using a CRM tool, seeding your content ahead of time and just generally getting in people’s inboxes ahead of time can make it easier when you have to make an ask.
It’s interesting and if/when Google can make it happen it’ll put a lot of power into the hands of content creators who have bothered to market themselves appropriately and build up an audience/network. At this point in time there are too many questions and not a lot of answers – the theory is good however the real world applications and the ways it could be manipulated are easy to see.
Sadly Google seem to look at the world through rose tinted glasses at times.
Stop reading and start doing… join a few communities and build up a network of people that you can rely on for advice or favors. Specialize in an area you enjoy but make sure you have a good working knowledge of other areas that you work with.
And if you’re still not sure sign up to my email list – my first email asks how I can help you… don’t be shy ask away!
I’ve given up trying to be honest – my neighbors think I might be a drug dealer and I just tell my family I help people improve their websites. Trying to explain link building and user experience usually results in blank stares and awkward questions about getting a proper job.
Chris, Thank you again for your time!
If you have any question in mind, that you would like to ask from Chris, Please share it in the comment below and I will try to ask Chris to respond to that aswell!
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