The “No-Follow” Tag – The #1 to Ensure Social Media Failure

The “No-Follow” Tag – The #1 to Ensure Social Media Failure

When surfing around the web, just like anybody else, I come across hundreds of blogs that peak my interest (sales, marketing, HR and entrepreneurship are what I surf around for). Upon visiting most of these social media forums, I notice that their platform is not friendly to the blogger. This form of social media “mean spirit” comes in the ugly form of “no-follow” tags.

As soon as I see a “no-follow” tag, I cease to visit the site again. With the number of blogs out there, there is no reason to show a blog or social media platform that could seemingly care less about you.

Quick definition of a “no-follow” – a link from any site pointing to a 3rd party website that is purposely programmed to not help the person who has visited your s.m. platform gain recognition with the search engines for their visit and subsequent comments.

A “no-follow” tag in the online world is like purposely taking up two parking spots.

Why are “no-follow” sites not worth the readers’ time or comments?

Forget the “no-follow” allowance, many of these sites attempt to be prisonlike and don’t let any external links on the blog. Then, if they do, they automatically slap the aforementioned anti-Google tag on each external HTML or “anchor text” link that the reader places under their comments.

Dumb, dumb, dumb move. These are the blogs that I give an initial chance to use, and then once I figure out their MO, I no longer visit the site, ever. Some of these blogs don’t have enough going for them to even pull this kind of online stunt.

I have the high PR site, what is the next step to get to the next level?

If your social media site is fortunate enough to have a high Google PR (or page rank) or low Alexa Ranking, you should leverage these numbers, in conjunction with your new linking policy in order to drive people to your blog. You do so by allowing each visitor to include a link (preferably anchor text a.k.a. HTML) to their website or blog at the end of his or her comment.

The main social media players do put “no-follow” tags on their links, however these are the big guys and they can do as they please. Just because Jeff Gordon drives a car at speeds over 200mph, does not mean that you should brush off the old Mustang and see what she can do (metaphorically speaking).

A solid example of a friendly social media post would look like the following:

“I thought the post commented perfectly on….however, I was most impressed with point x.”

John Doe

House Improvements Denver

The “House Improvements Denver” anchor text would then provide a link to the John D.’s website. It would come in the form of a “do-follow link”, thus giving John a little extra boost with his search engine rankings.

Without doubt, making your platform more user friendly will bring more spam to your social media site and it will have to be monitored a lot more closely going forward. Conversely, ask yourself. Is it better to have a social media platform that has to be monitored than running a blog that is desolate?

Armed with the above knowledge, below, I have answered some common questions you may now have about your social media site:

How do I avoid the “no-follow” tag on my social media site?

The first thing to do is determine whether or not the blog host you are using automatically turns posts and HTML tags into “no-follows.” Due to excessive spamming (besides other reasons), some blogs automatically morph perfectly good HTML signatures to the evil “no-follow” links. If this is the case, make sure to switch.

Where do I draw the line when it comes to HTML tags?

I would suggest that you have an open policy that states that any anchor text signature over 4 words in length will be considered spam. This should keep everything in control, keep you happy and keep the visitor happy.

How do I get the information out about my online marketing friendly blog?

This is easy. All you have to do is go to blogs that list “SEO friendly” or “online marketing friendly” blogs, act as if you’re a 3rd party and discuss how helpful your blog is.

By Michael Williams

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