Update: I promised to update this post if I received a backlink from it. Woo Hoo! I did receive a backlink and it posted via Moz.com on 1-31-2014. See Photo Below.
Other info regarding two of the items I checked below:
- There was only one comment and 119 views on this post as of this update. So light traffic on activerain does not prevent your post from getting backlinks.
- I did not link to any authoritative sites like NAR etc.
- I did post this article with a link to active rain on one of my other blogs and also on twitter and google+.
- Currently google has indexed this post for www.lakenormanblog.com and this active rain post
If you spend any time on Active Rain, you will see that quality and engaging content is the primary purpose of the network. I give the creators and staff lots of credit for a job well done. That being said, I personally started taking notice of Active Rain when I saw real estate listings and blog posts showing up in search engines results.
As an owner of a small real estate firm, I have to wear many hats including Realtor, web designer and marketer among others. As a result, I’m always looking for ways to maximize our company’s internet presence. I wanted to utilize the power of Active Rain to promote my listings and create valuable backlinks to my site.
You probably already know that if you want your blog posts/listings indexed by the major search engines, you need to sign up for the paid “RainMaker” account. When you create posts as a “RainMaker”, Active Rain successfully gets your posts indexed quickly.
From my experience, I have had the best results from posts with unique and keyword specific titles. If you use generic, competitive titles like “Charlotte NC Real Estate for Sale” or “Charlotte NC Home for Sale”, it will be difficult rank for those terms. You are not only competing with all the local real estate firms with large budgets, you are also competing with the national players like Realtor.com, Zillow and Trulia. Use something that’s specific to your listing like “Charlotte Home with Deeded Boat Slip for Sale”. This will reduce your competition and more importantly, target buyers with specific criteria that your listing meets.
Creating backlinks from Active Rain to my website has proven more challenging. Out of 79 posts only 3 posts are currently passing “link equity” to my website. I’ve analyzed my posts in hopes of finding out why only a few of my posts have been indexed by Google and have produced the desired backlinks. I have found a few correlations but no firm causation.
One common attribute among the posts that are creating backlinks is they have quality content relevant to the title. None of my posts that were just promoting my listings and included multiple search links have produced results. However, that does not explain why many of my other content rich posts are not showing up. I also noticed that the 3 posts in question have links from some of my other sites/blogs that link back to the Active Rain post. Again, I have other posts with similar links that are not creating backlinks.
I also checked:
· Commonalties between the chosen topics, for example “Real Estate Market Trends”
· Relationship between the number of comments the posts received
· External links to "authorative sites" like NAR or NPR
As of this writing, I have not been able to establish why some posts create backlinks while others do not. It doesn’t seem (as far as I can tell) that Active Rain prevents certain posts from generating backlinks with “no follow” links are other measures.
Bottom Line: Does Active Rain give you backlinks? Yes, Active Rain posts can produce backlinks to your site but predicting when, where and how is uncertain. If you have any insights from your experiences, I would love to hear about them. I will also update this post to let you know if it creates a backlink to my site.