SocialAdr is a simple link-building service that focuses on social bookmarking.
In essence, the site boasts thousands of members, each with their own social bookmarking accounts. You submit your site to the service and hundreds of real people – with real, unique social bookmarking accounts – then bookmark your site for you.
The theory is that over time these “footprint-free” links submitted by real people will drive your site up the search engines and increase your traffic.
But does it really work?
It certainly builds links, but we all know that overall social bookmarking links are relatively low-quality. What I wanted to know in a nutshell was therefore whether SocialAdr actually produces any noticable results in terms of increased traffic.
After all, links for the sake of it are pointless – we need to build links that actually produce results. Hence the reason for my SocialAdr review…
SocialAdr Review: How I Tested The Service
I’ve built a lot of niche sites over the years. Some I’ve shut down, some I’ve sold and others I’ve held onto for whatever reason. What’s important, if this SocialAdr review is going to be a fair test, is that SocialAdr links are the only change to the target site.
After all, if I utilize social bookmarking links and use other traffic-generation methods, it’ll be very difficult to tell whether SocialAdr has really had any effect, or whether the other strategies are responsible. In other words for this to be a fair review, we need to only utilize this one link building technique.
Fortunately I have a handful of niche blogs and sites sitting around the web that I never really did anything with. I did the keyword research, had some content written, built the site and apart from a few guest posts to get the site crawled have done little else.
They have unique, reasonable quality content in niche markets but, due to the lack of promotion, receive virtually no traffic. The odd bit of long-tail traffic from Bing and Yahoo but hardly anything to write home about.
It’s these that are the perfect targets for this experiment, namely because:
- They’re already indexed in Google
- They possess unique content focusing on low-competition, long-tail traffic
- I’m not promoting them in any other way, so any increase (or decrease) in traffic can be directly attributed to SocialAdr.
Introducing The Case Study Test Sites
For the purposes of our SocialAdr review I’m going to be using two niche sites of mine that I set up a couple of years ago. I’m not planning to reveal the domains or even the niche’s they’re in (to keep the experiment fair) but I will tell you these sites were built as niche Amazon affiliate sites and target specific product-related keywords.
What’s interesting is that I’ve done so little with the sites since launch that they’re not even monetized; not a single Amazon affiliate link or Adsense ad is to be found there. But that shouldn’t matter; we’re looking only at differences to our traffic levels.
Below you’ll see two screenshot of my Google Analytics account for the two test sites before I started to build social bookmarking links to them with SocialAdr. As you can see, they received the tiniest trickle of traffic naturally, but will SocialAdr help to increase this?
For the purposes of this review I decided to select 3 pages from each site – namely the homepage and two supplementary pages and then drive 40 social bookmarking links to each of them.
So that’s 40 links per page x 3 pages x 2 sites.
That means 120 links per site or 240 links in total.
If the links that SocialAdr build have value then I think it’s reasonable to expect some kind of movement with this many links – especially as I’m targeting such longtail phrases with very little competition.
I also decided to “spin” my link text and descriptions so that pretty much every link built would be unique – further helping to reduce any kind of footprint and avoiding any “over optimization” penalty.
The Results Of My SocialAdr Case Study
The two screenshots below show my traffic for the week after I first submitted my sites to SocialAdr, as the links started to trickle in. You can clearly see the “jump” in visitors thanks to the fresh bookmarks – and a number of other SocialAdr users clicking on my links…
However what’s also clear is how short-term this jump is and how traffic quickly drops back off again within a matter of days.
The real question is whether these bookmarking links actually lead to any long term traffic.
So I just decided to call up my Google Analytics for the two sites for this year. In other words the graphs below show the “result” of these SocialAdr links some 6+ weeks on – and deliberately avoiding December which can see unusual traffic patterns.
And this is the long-term traffic graph showing both traffic before the experiment started, while it was running, and for some time afterwards.
I think the results are pretty interesting here. Not surprisingly, we did see a sizeable increase in traffic while the bookmarks were being submitted.
However it’s the long-term graphs that really make for interesting reading.
Before SocialAdr links: 5 visitors
After SocialAdr links: 24 visitors
Before SocialAdr links: 48 visitors
After SocialAdr links: 50 visitors
Bearing in mind the fact that these were the only links that were built to these sites in the last few months and that I haven’t done anything with them since the results rather surprised me.
While site #2 saw no real change in overall statistics, site #1 now receives almost five times as many visitors not as it did before submitting it to SocialAdr. Quite an impressive result!
So the conclusion of my SocialAdr review is a rather unexpected one. While social bookmarking links are generally considered quite low quality and probably won’t help you to rank for competitive keywords it appears that in some cases where you’re targeting low competition, long-tail keyword phrases SocialAdr can have a noticeable effect on your traffic.
Right – I’m off to add some Amazon affiliate links to site #1 now!
Question: Have you ever used SocialAdr? What have your results been? What link building tactics are you currently seeing results with? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below…