Case Study: Do Web 2.0 Links Work for Niche Sites?

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If you have been online for years, you probably are aware that things that work today may no longer work in future. A few years ago, all you needed to rank high on Google was a bunch of articles submitted to hundreds of article directories.

Then Google Panda came, then Penguin, then Hummingbird and a load of other animal updates. The more I stay online, the more I realize that nobody knows what they are doing. Yes, some gurus may have and idea of what is working with Google. But it’s just that; an idea.

No one really knows how Google decides to rank websites. So, anytime you hear a tactic is ‘dead’, take it with a grain of salt.

The only way you can be sure whether a tactic works is to test and see. Alternatively, you can buy data from those that have tested. For me, I’m team testing all the way, so let it be.

I was researching on some backlinks for a potential expired domain that I came across a specific niche that I’d never thought of. You see, the good thing with being in the game is you get to find stuff. You can only find stuff when you are in the game, not at the sidelines.

Anyway, I found a prospective niche usually, I evaluate a website’s strength based on the quality of backlinks it has. The shock for me was that the niche sites on the first page of Google has Web 2.0 backlinks making 90 percent of their links. The links were a bunch of blogspots, webblys, and the sort.

Here’s what the Ahref’s backlink report of the top site in the niche looks like:

web 20 links niche site

What shocked me is the amount of free traffic this site was getting for the niche.

Anyway, site 9 in the niche results page was an Amazon product and site 10 was a large online store. So, let’s look at the metrics of the niche site that’s holding it at position 8. Here’s it:

web 20 links niche site

Now, this site at position 8 does not seem a lot competitive. I mean, it only has 25 referring domains, which are something I can build in a couple of days.

Of course, if they are using Private Blog Networks (PBNs), they may be hiding them from Ahrefs. Still, looking at their backlink profile, the links are a little weak. And as you can see from the image, they’ve been losing links since beginning of August. I guess these must be some low quality links.

By the way, using Ahrefs can help you know what kind of competition in terms of backlinks you will be going up against in your niche. The software is quite pricey if you are just starting out. However, you can save on the software and a bunch of others like Majestic SEO, SEM Rush and others at this site.

Anyway, having analyze the backlinks of the site, I’ve decided to make a site in the same niche and see how far I can rank with web 2.0s. Just to be clear, I will not be entirely using Web 2.0s although I will mainly focus on them. My aim is to use Web 2.0s for 80 percent of the link profile.

If everything goes well, I may just stick to using Web 2.0s. If need be, I may add a couple of PBNs.

So, today I’ve bought an expired domain that is relevant to the niche. Here are the metrics of the domain:

expired domain metrics

Don’t get all pushy about the existing links. I promise you, they are not powerful. I just wanted an expired domain to benefit from its age.

I’ve set up WordPress on the site and will wait for it to get indexed.

In the meantime, I will start writing the content for the site. I’ll be writing at least one article a day. I will simply be researching what the top sites have written about and paraphrase it. Not spinning or anything. Just good written content that will provide value to a visitor.

I also do not have an elaborate link building plan. I may build a link here and there as I see fit. However, I will be tracking the links on an Excel sheet.

So, there we go. You can check the timelines of the project here.

Have any questions? Hit me up in the comment section below.

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2 Comments

  1. Nick says

    The web 2.0 backlink strategy does work, I use it all the time to rank sites no. 1 in Google search. It takes 3 months to work though, most people quite because they think it is not working after 2 weeks. I scrape expired web 2.0 Tumblr and Weebly blogs with lots of backlinks pointing to them, these are super powerful for ranking affiliate sites, well any site really.

    1. Don says

      Thanks Nick. Most people swear it’s dead. I’ve been using PBNs but I solely want to test Web 2.0s. Do you only use Webblys and Tumblrs for Web20s?

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