As I mentioned recently I’m back on the hunt for links, more importantly, links that count. First in my list of services to try out is the much hailed and sometimes talked about Link Emperor. Is it any good? Does it provide effective links? Will I be keeping my subscription?
What Is Link Emperor
To sum it up in as short a way as possible Link Emperor is your basic “hands off” link building service, it provides a way of builing back links to your web pages in a way that requires the least amount of effot from yourself. If you ever used LinxBoss then think along those lines, it is perhaps a little more involved than that but not a whole lot.
How Do I Use Link Emperor
The basic work-flow for using Link Emperor is very simple. You create a campaign, your campaign contains target pages (pages from your money sites, videos, social profiles, whatever you want links built to really), you can then add keywords for each target page that you wish to rank for. Beyond this simplicity there is a lot of tweaking to be done, for example the Link Emperor system assigns weighting values to both your target pages and keywords as to how much attention they should get. You can rely on Link Emperor to provide these values (hands off) or you can manually edit them which is what I prefer to do. As far as I’m concernced I know best for how one of my pages fits in to how I want to rank but that is very much a personal choice.
Once you have your basic setup Link Emperor actually has some very clever options to help you avoid any issues with Google. Most importantly you are given the option to randomise your keyword linking profile. You decide on the percentage of links you want to be exact match, keyword with fillers and other random “click here” style keywords. We all know over optimistaion is the quickest route to Google hell so having this option without the need to use your limited keywords is a real bonus. Also on top of this once you have some links being created Link Emperor allows you to divert some of your link credits to building links to these other links, or in plain English multi-tiering your link building. This extra buffer is designed to avoid over optimisation and boosting your campaign landing pages in as safe a way as possible.
Where Do The Links Come From?
The Link Emperor system is actually a type of brokerage for other link services. You buy credits from Link Emperor with a monthly subscription and then their system uses those credits to send link blasts out via other services. It sounds complicated but it’s actually very simple. The only thing for you to decide upon is at a campaign level what type of links you want built. As things stand the options available are Article Submission, Blog Commenting, Forum Profile Creation, Misc Platform Creation, Press Release Submission, Private Network Blog Posts, Web 2.0 Blog Posts, Social Bookmarking, Social Signals, Video Creation and Submission, Web 2.0 Property Creation and Wiki Submission. In theory you could decide to use 100% of your points on just Video Creation or Article Submission but in reality the Link Emperor system has a standard profile that fits most sites and you can then use sliders to adjust how much of each you want done. If you have a real hatred of forum profiles then it is very easy to make sure no links of this type are built. It is a system that is very simple to understand and very quick to use. Link Emperor then spends your points on link services that offer the type of linking you want, this is all done in a fully automated way, there is no content creation or submission for you to do.
Are There Any Extras?
There are a couple of bolt-on features that whilst not essential to getting links are nice features. There is a decent article management system built in. The actual links that get created are placed on PLR content and all this is kept for you, here you can add your own articles for use in blasts or even take articles that have been used and use them elsewhere. The other nice feature is the rank checker which goes out and checks your rankings for your keyword targets in Google each week. Whilst not a fully comprehensive rank checker it is a nice bonus for those of you who don’t have access to your own none bias rankings checker. There is the option for paying for more frequent checks and including Bing/Yahoo as well. Not really a bonus but another nice feature is the ability to review link blasts and have them refunded. For example I had a particular problem with videos being banned as quick as they were created but it was actually a very simple 2 click process to get those credits refunded and eventually to black list that service so that it was no longer used in my campaigns. There there is some on-the-page analysis thrown in for free as well. Overall you couldn’t complain about the value for money you are getting with Link Emperor, not to mention that it is an obviously well coded and responsive interface as well.
Is Link Emperor Effective?
The real crux of the matter. For all the nice words above I guess this is what people really want to know? I’m afraid to say it’s not a black and white answer. I’ve got to admit that this isn’t the first access I’ve had to a Link Emperor account and it was on the basis of what I saw for a client that I went ahead and signed up to give it a try. For some types of “landing page” I’ve seen on-going great results with Link Emperor but for others it has been worse than useless and seems to have triggered the dreaded “oh shit I’ve fell of the face of the Google rankings planet” penalty.
Where I’ve used Link Emperor to target profile pages on high authority websites, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Places, Google+ to name just a few, the results 3-6 weeks in have started to show real signs of improvement. I have used Link Emperor to rank YouTube videos in the top 3 for some reasonably competitive keywords. It definitely works for that. The client account I had access to was solely setup for this purpose and we had some stellar results. The theory behind this being that by placing links to your own actual sites on this type of 3rd party content you should see a boost in your own sites rankings, again you are using a type of buffer level of (well respected) content between your websites and the links that you create. If I’m being honest I’m yet to see that knock-on effect and whilst the profile and content on these other sites does great with Link Emperor there has been little or no impact on the sites being linked to from them. Even for a very large and respected Real Estate website that does well anyway. The overall result on MY websites has been negligable using this buffer strategy.
The other side of the coin is what happens if you point Link Emperor directly at pages on your own websites? Not good news I’m afraid. One month later and the rankings have crumbled to the point where Google is a total waste of time for those sites. I’m not saying they were riding high prior to Link Emperor (think top 30-40 for most keywords) but they have literally fell into the hundreds. I didn’t get to see any of this with the other account I had access to as we stayed away from this direct linking strategy but I’m not hopeful of things picking up. Once a site falls of the map like this it is very very rare for it to come back stronger.
In conclusion then if you are a business that has lots of social profiles, video and other forms of distributed content then Link Emperor is certainly affective in promoting that. In addition if you are an affiliate marketer that makes their money from syndicating content to other websites such as Youtube videos then this would be a service well worth trying. If on the other hand your primary goal is promoting your own content on your own websites then even with the randomisation of keywords and extra buffer layers using Link Emperor is still a big risk and not one in all honesty I could recommend.
Link Emperor Pricing
I used the most basic $147 a month “Soldier” plan which seemed fine for promoting the 2 main websites I was targetting. This gives you 30,000 credits a month to be spent and allows you to target up to 100 primary keywords. You can find out more information about the other packages available by visiting their website here. If you are interested then they are currently running a $7 trial which gives you 7 days to try out the service. Unlike some other trials this does open up the full functionality of the system and you will get links built in that time so it’s where I would recommend you start.