How to build backlinks using blog comments – Pt 4

Note:
In light of the changes Google made in 2012, this article is a bit outdated and we don’t recommend building backlinks by blog commenting with keywords anchor text anymore. In fact, building backlinks with blog comments at all is probably not a good idea, although commenting on blogs in your industry (using your real name) is a good way to show the search engines you’re active in the field, become more well known, and potentially bring some traffic to your site.

In Part 3 of this series, I introduced you to the 3 major characteristics Google looks at when determining the value of a link. In reality there are quite a few more characteristics than 3, but those were the major ones.

In this part, I’m going to introduce you to perhaps the simplest of link building techniques…

Blog Comments

By far, the easiest thing you can do right now to build backlinks is to go leave comments on blogs. Most blogs allow comments on the articles, and most of those blogs also allow a link back to a website of the commenter’s choice.

Here’s a comment from our blog…notice the commentator’s name is red (the color of links on our blog). That name links back to the commentator’s website (although it could be any website the commentator specifies when entering her comment – more on that later).

Screenshot of a blog comment

Sample blog comment from our blog

 

So on this particular link, the anchor text is “Sandro;” probably not the most useful anchor text unless this person is trying to rank for the term “Sandro.” We’ll get into more detail about that shortly.

How to leave blog comments

It’s pretty easy. Find a blog about any topic you want to comment on. Don’t know how to find blogs? Try Technorati’s blog directory.

Obviously if you comment on an article, you should make it a relevant comment…there’s nothing bloggers hate more than people leaving unrelated or gibberish comments just to get a link.

When you go to leave a blog comment, you’ll see a form that looks like this:

Screenshot of a blog comment form

Standard blog comment form

 

The thing people don’t realize about this is that when you submit your blog comment, the name and website are combined to form the link. So, the name becomes the anchor text and the website is where that link will point to. So, let’s say I wanted a link to our company Facebook page, with the anchor text “RLM”. I’d put “RLM” in the name field and “http://www.facebook.com/rlmseo” in the website field. Pretty simple.

Blog Ettiquette

So, some of you may be wondering why the commentator on our blog pictured above chose to use “Sandro” as the anchor text. Many blogs, including ours, have policies that keywords should not be used for the comment name. The reason for that is any blog owner will tell you the vast majority of comments are left exclusively to get a link and don’t add any value to the conversation. So, if you try to comment on one of those blogs using a keyword instead of a name, the comment will likely get thrown out. So, in those cases, it’s best to use a name. It’s not as good as a keyword, but it’s better than nothing.

Many blogs are no-followed

Another thing to keep in mind about blog commenting is that most blogs add the rel=nofollow attribute to their blog comments. This is another step to combat blog comment spam. If links are nofollowed, commentators looking for a quick link are inclined to look elsewhere, whereas commentators interested in genuinely adding the article won’t care too much that the link is nofollowed.

But wait, didn’t I say Google doesn’t pay attention to nofollow links? I did and that was mostly true. What I didn’t tell you is that part of building a natural link profile includes building nofollow links. Think about it…if you’re commenting on blogs because you’re genuinely interested in the topic, you’re going to have mostly nofollow links on those comments and maybe a few dofollow links from blogs who don’t nofollow their comments. Google knows this and, while you don’t have to match that profile exactly, you do want to add plenty of nofollow blog comments into the mix.

Do-Follow Blogs

The good news is there are plenty of blogs out there that, for one reason or another, do not nofollow their blog comment links; these are known as “dofollow blogs” and you can find plenty of them to comment on by searching Google for dofollow blogsdofollow blog directory, or some variation of that.

Why blog commenting sucks

First of all, blog commenting is super easy so that’s great; anybody can start doing it fairly quickly. The downside is that it’s boring, tedious, and not super effective. I mean, let’s face it, we all know even most of the good blog comments out there are only dropped to get a link and I’d be lying if I said I cared about every article I’ve ever commented on.

The best strategy

When it comes to blog commenting, the best approach is to commit to leaving 10 – 15 comments per week at first. Just take 5 – 10 minutes a day and leave a comment or two. Get a good mix of do-follow and no-follow links and stick with it. It’s not going to get you to page 1 by itself – although it might if there’s very little competition for your keywords – but it will give you a solid base of links and move you up in the rankings a bit. Not to mention the fact that if you leave good comments on high traffic blogs you can get direct traffic from other readers clicking your link.

Hire us or just give us a call to chat!

If you have any questions or would like to find out how we can help you get ranked much faster and without all the boring blog commenting ;-) request a quote or give us a call at 513-549-7355.

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12 Comments
  1. Thanks for the info! I want to make sure I understand that in this case, using the name CRA Glass is better than using Cincinnati auto glass because my reply would violate policy and get tossed? I only know that because you mentioned it in the blog. But if you didn’t, where or how would I have known what your policy was?

    • Hi Mike, yes, here, in general, your company name is okay. You don’t really know what a blog’s policy is unless they mention it. If there are other comments on an article, skim through them and see if any have keyword names or not. If you don’t see any keywords, you know your answer, if you do, you know the blog owner probably allows it.

  2. This is useful to know, though I wonder how much impact do Nofollow links truly have. I’ve added a firefox add-on (NoDoFollow) to identify dofollow blogs but can’t seem to find a good equivalent for Chrome, the other browser I use mostly. Thanks for the useful info!

    • Nofollow links are part of a natural link profile. I think there’s some debate out there as to whether they actually help you rank for whatever term is in the anchor text, they definitely help create a more natural, well-rounded link profile, which Google wants to see.

  3. thanks,
    you has provided good ways for defining blog commenting .
    but when i read your reply you told some one that “Nofollow” is a natural link , but whatever i know that Nofollow is not good for backlinking and somewhere i read google treated spam Nofollow link

    • Any natural link profile is going to have nofollow comments in it. The vast majority of blogs online are nofollow so if you’re just blog commenting because you want to (not because you’re trying to improve your rankings) you’re going to naturally end up with most, if not all, nofollow comments.

      • thanks for reply .
        but generally people do blog commenting for improve their ranking and according to your view, Is it not the good way for creating backlink ?
        then suggest me what is the proper manner for quality backlink with the help of blog commenting or is their any other method.

        • People don’t comment on blogs just to improve rankings. They comment because they want to say something. That said, if you’re counting quantity alone, most comment for a self-serving purpose, that’s just the nature of the beast, but it’s not the only reason people comment and it’s certainly not the reason the SEs want you to comment.

          When building links you have to think about what Google wants to happen. Google doesn’t want people manipulating rankings. It wants people creating interesting and unique content and overall just contributing to making the web a better and more interesting place. The way Google’s algorithm actually works isn’t necessarily completely in line with those goals (especially not prior to 2012), but they’re always pushing in a direction to reward you for contributing valuable/unique/interesting information to the web as a whole.

          Explaining how to build backlinks in general is far outside the scope of this article. But if you understand that backlinks are one of the things the SEs look at when determining your rank, and you understand the overall goal of these search engines – to push the most relevant and high quality results to the top of the SERPs – then you’ll be able to better evaluate the value of a particular link building strategy.

  4. Very insightful piece, John. As a small business we’re always interested in cost-effective ways we can improve our SEO.

    What surprised me was how technical the process is when farming link sources. However after a quick search I discovered many blogs with spam filters on their WordPress blogs.

    I’ve saved this blog and will follow its instructions closely.

  5. This article helped me tremendously, I have a much better understanding of how backlinks work now. You said it like a true blogger when you said don’t comment just for the backlink or page rank. When people do that it is almost as bad as spam, taking away from the self expression, which essentially is all it is. Thanks for the incredible article.

  6. Haha “why blog commenting sucks” honestly made me laugh. We just started using this technique and I was a bit confused about how the whole process was done, but you made it easy to understand. I first clicked on your blog’s link, because it was shared in over a hundred google circles, so I figured it must be a good read. I think that is also a good indicator of a blog’s strength, would you agree??

    • Hi Marcel, sure G+ shares / circles and a lot of other social indicators can be good measures of strength. You have to be careful though because social signals are relatively easy to fake (people buy FB likes all the time).

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