Hot At Sphinn: When No-Follow Is Appropriate, Value Of Mentions Without Links & More

sphinn-logoTwo discussions took center stage last week on our sister site, Sphinn — both dealt with fairly detailed SEO and linking issues.

Our “Discussion of the Week” asked, Do Unlinked Company/Brand Mentions Help with SEO?, and the general consensus from a handful of reply was along the lines of, “Yes, but how would search engines measure/track that?” In other words, the thought is that it helps your SEO when your company name is mentioned online, even if it’s not an actual link.

In a different discussion, Sphinn members and editors discussed when, if ever, it’s appropriate to use the no-follow tag on an outbound link to a quality web page? In that discussion, our favorite comment from Sphinn member climaxmedia, who said

Hoarding pagerank is useless. Tastefully linking out to high quality, authoritative websites is great for your website because of one main reason (in my opinion): RELEVANCE. Why wouldn’t you want Google to follow a well anchored link from your site to another RELATED, HIGH QUALITY site?

It’s not too late to read and/or join in those discussions if you missed them last week. Meanwhile, here’s a look back at all of Sphinn’s activity over the past seven days.

Most Comments

Most Tweeted (not already listed above)

  • Interview with Google Places Guru Mike Blumenthal – StepForth excerpts a good portion of the recent Webmaster Radio podcast with Professor Maps, AKA Mike Blumenthal. Read the article then grab the audio.
  • What to Look For When Hiring A Link Builder – Lisa Barone goes over what qualities you should look for in a link builder.
  • Restaurant websites: Why are they so awful? – Slate takes a look at the terrible state of web design and usability in the restaurant industry. Love this part: "When you visit many terrible restaurant websites in succession, it becomes obvious that they're not bad because of neglect or lack of funds—these food purveyors appear to have spent a great deal of money and time to uglify their pages. Indeed, there seems to be an inverse relationship between a restaurant's food and its site. The swankier the place, the worse the page."
  • Ripoff Report Not Banned, But Removes Itself From Google’s Index (& Now Back In) – Ripoff Report was completely gone from Google’s index for several hours on Tuesday and Google says it’s been done at Ripoff Report’s own request. But, the question now is whether that request was made on purpose or an accident.
  • Guidelines for Small Project Pricing – Interesting stuff from the co-founder of a digital media company sharing the company's "collection of rules and red flags which help us navigate through every small project." Not specifically search related, but a good thought piece for search consultants.

Hot On Sphinn: August 8 to August 14, 2011

  • 28 SEO Experts Share the Most Compelling Content that Influenced Their Works – The Internet still stands as the greatest invention of mankind, thus far, in my opinion. Since its creation, the Internet has made almost everything in reach, whether it’s through trading, communication, entertainment and most extensively with information, wherein any sort of information were made very accessible to people, worldwide, over the web.
  • Converting Your Website Visitors One Small Step at a Time – Adding value to your website through free articles, blog posts, videos, and any other type of content that may be helpful to those at the not-ready-to-buy-yet stage, is a great way to gain extra traffic. The problem (if you want to call it that) with all this "value-added" content is that it brings those very people who will rarely convert into a lead or a sale.
  • Email Case Study: Analyzing J.C. Penney's Frequency, Subject Lines – Case study from email marketer Carolyn Nye on J. C. Penney's use of email marketing.
  • 7 Tips on Avoiding Bad Reviews – Bad reviews happen. That's just life. But there are ways to avoid getting too many of them. Here are 7 tips to help you dodge the stinkers.
  • 13 Ways to Make Your Affiliate Program Suck – I recently was complaining about an affiliate program on Twitter and my pal netmeg asked that I do a post as sort of a public service announcement to affiliate program managers on the things we affiliates find insanely annoying about their programs – later citing her biggest pet peeves.
  • SEO Stats Galore In Latest MarketingSherpa Benchmark Study – A nice overview of MarketingSherpa's latest SEO benchmark study. Worth a read particularly if you sell SEO services.
  • Europe Takes Its Own Path on Internet Privacy – Spain’s government has ordered Google to stop indexing information about 90 citizens who filed formal complaints with its Data Protection Agency. The case is now in court and being watched closely across Europe for how it might affect the control citizens will have over information they posted, or which was posted about them, on the Web.
  • 6 myths of SEO copywriting – Many have misguided perceptions of what SEO copywriting is and what it entails. Some are doing more harm than good to their website – this article quashes 6 common SEO copywriting myths…
  • Drop the Autobot: Manual Posting to Facebook Outperforms Automated – We've written on auto-posting before and there still seems to be a debate as to whether or not it actually affects performance to post via bot. Anecdotally, I've found that manual posting shows significant increases in performance.
  • Announcing: The Complete Google Algo History – SEOmoz’s first “living document”, a complete history of named Google algorithm changes, from “Boston” in 2003 to Panda 2.3 (or whatever the kids are calling it these days).
  • Produce Actionable Insights: Mate Custom Reports With Adv Segments! – Multiple ways to make meaningful and actionable web analytics reports.
  • Google +1: Can it Ever Be a Major Ranking Signal? (History Says Not Really) – Logically, we all think +1′s could be a good signal. Mostly because When you +1 content from your account, that account is multi-dimensional giving it a different spam profile thank say a link, which is the traditional way of sites getting “votes” that impact placement on the SERPS.  But can it become a major ranking signal?
  • How to Get More Facebook Likes for Your Website and Fan Page – Learn what it takes for people to care about you and your site. Don't hate the player, like the page. [groan]

This is the latest in a weekly look at the stories that were “hot” on Sphinn in the past week. We’ll post these recaps every week.

Related Topics: Channel: Other | Features: General | Sphinn

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About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Search Engine Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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