Backlink SEO technique
I’ve been looking at 360cities.net since the start of the year. The site allows you to upload high quality images and automatically stitch it together to make cool panoramas.
I like how 360cities have optimized their site for search engines. “Panoramic” keyword derivatives are highly competitive. So 360cities doesn’t only optimize for “panoramic software” (which has high relevance, but decreasing trend) but also for “360 photography” (which is becoming a more popular search term).
The fact that they are on DMOZ also helps their rankings. But what really sets them apart is off-site optimization. With a whopping +127,000 backlinks to the site (yes that many!) helps them appear on the first page of almost all relevant search results.
Backlink is key
What I like about their service model is how backlinking is inherently built-in. Look at the flash container I plugged into this post earlier. I got an embedded interactive panorama on my page (very cool!), but at the same time I gave 360cities a backlink as well. Now imagine thousands of users doing that and giving 360cities a little push on the google ranking system. Pretty cool, eh?
This is what you need to think about when you think of SEO. The challenge is to come up with an ingenious way to entice users to backlink to your site. For example try running viral campaigns with a funny video or a flash game. Another technique is to have “powered by” logos, but this only works if your brand has prestige. I’ve also seen twitter/youtube promotions for people who successfully backlink (can look a bit lame). The best idea is to inherently embed the backlink as part of your service, very much like what 360cities has done.