Some Days I Wish This Blog Were Private So I Could Share More

by Donna Fontenot December 31st, 2007 

Like the title of the post says, I often wish I could hide this blog from prying eyes so that I could be more open about things. Unfortunately, we are all forced to live with some restraint. I am going to share a tip in a rather vague way here, but I will be happy to share the details if I know and trust you. And if I know and trust you, then you know how to get in touch with me. :)


I acquired a certain type of link earlier this year, and noticed that having just a couple of them really gave a site a nice boost, in which rankings jumped from the 20's-30's up to top ten, then top 5, and finally #1 (all in about 3 weeks of time).

Pleased with those results, I acquired the same type of links for another site that also needed some rankings boosted. As before, the rankings went from top 20 to top 10 to #1 within a couple of weeks.

Pleased yet again, I once again acquired the same type of links for a third site, and the results were exactly the same.

To continue with the experiment, I've begun testing to see what happens if I lose those links. So far, after a couple of months of not having the links to the first site, I've only lost the rankings on Yahoo. Google and Live both kept the rankings, so either they haven't noticed that the links are gone, or they don't care.

After just one month of not having the links to the second site, the same thing has happened. Yahoo has just recently dropped the rankings, but the rankings are still holding in Google and Live.

I've only just recently begun testing the disappearance of the backlinks to the third site, and so far, there have been no drop in rankings. I expect to see Yahoo drop the rankings in another 2 or 3 weeks.

I wish I could share the type of link that was so effective publicly, but you all know how quickly that would be made ineffective once the search engine spies got wind of it. But again, if you and I are buddies (and I consider lots of you to be in that category), give me a shout and I'll share with you privately. However, keep in mind that if I see you turn around and share the info publicly, you'll never get another tip from me again, and I'll do my best to make sure no one else does either. (Oh, that little "warning" made me feel so mafia-esque. LOL).

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51 Responses to “Some Days I Wish This Blog Were Private So I Could Share More”

  1. Dang Donna! Now you've got me all curious. I've sent you a PM over at my favorite forum but if you tell me "a link from an authority site in your niche" I'm going to be mighty disappointed lol.

  2. DazzlinDonna says:

    LOL, I promise I wouldn't do that to you or anyone. :)

  3. Just tried it out. I'll let you know what kind of results I see.

  4. SpostareDuro says:

    mafia-esque….classic. LOL

  5. Lea de Groot says:

    *sigh* I need more BFF

  6. badijones says:

    I wish you could share too. I've PMd you as well at my favorite forum.

  7. SEMSpot says:

    Donna you sure to have me curious now with what you have mentioned lol. By all means let me know what you at least did when it no longer is effective for you. Even though the link type will no longer work, my mind is still itching to know your secret. Come by the spot sometime and say hi! :)


  8. rob says:

    Donna, you just know how curious us SEO types are, knowledge is power and all that stuff! Tell me, tell me!!! I'd love to do some test follow ups πŸ˜€

  9. I would love to have the information.

  10. billse says:

    Hmm… do you take bribes?

  11. DazzlinDonna says:

    LOL, billse, sure, paypal me $75,000. πŸ˜€

  12. billse says:

    I'm an SEO – I only have pocket lint and a few paperclips. Will that work? πŸ˜‰

  13. SEO says:

    Many Big SEO Firms Make Chicken Scratch…

  14. Hi Donna,

    Just sent you an email. You made me curious and I'd love to be part of your share circle. :-)

    Thank you

  15. Doug Heil says:

    Hi Donna, While on the surface your test seems to be great, but you have us all assuming that "nothing" else at all was done to any of those client sites but those links coming in that were added. You had 3 clients you tested this with, and you are saying that not one single content change was made on any of the client pages? Nothing was ever added to any page by the client or by yourself? Not a single title tag was modified at all on any site? I find that kind of hard to believe, but if true… great.

    You are also assuming that there have not been algo changes in the markets your clients are in and that no other sites that are targeting your terms have done anything to move down since your clients moved up. Do you see what I mean?

    I'm not even sure anyone could be 100% sure that a one link coming in made that site go up in positions as we never know what other variables might have been in play at the time. Weights of different parts of an algo go up and down daily for the most part. It's never a static type of thing. the smallest change on any page could make a big difference at anytime.

    As far as having private stuff goes; oh sure; there are things that I may not be free and open with, but you really can find out everything somewhere on the internet right now anyway. Most of this stuff has to do with the actual design/structure/architecture of the site and how it's developed to begin with. Making a small change to any of that makes a difference. I just don't see how a certain type of link would be the "sole" reason something jumped to number one as you state. Even with the perfect test environment you could not simulate any changes made to other sites targeting the same term and to any algo change an engine may have made at the same time.

    my 2 cents. :)

  16. Kurt says:


    I am a new reader to your blog, but would love to have the tip, if you would care to share.

    There will be no leaks, but if there are, feel free to pour cement over me, and leave me in the bottom of the Hudson.

  17. Hey Donna, old pal – we're pals, right? It's great that you've discovered something this useful, if you ever feel generous would you mind indulging me a bit more about the topic? :)

  18. DazzlinDonna says:

    Oh please, Doug, do crawl back to your forum and bitch about me there. You assume things you know nothing about – you don't know me from Adam. First of all, those weren't client sites, they were MY sites, so I know exactly what happened with them. And yes, of course, nothing is guaranteed to be certain cause and effect, since we have no control over algo changes, but frankly, my readers are smart enough to understand that, and to understand that I wouldn't tell them something unless I'd done as thorough a test as is possible. Please, don't come here and try to "educate" me or any of my readers with information on site structure, etc. We are a savvy group of people, whether you believe it or not.

  19. Doug Heil says:

    Oh please? LOL

    Donna; You can check my forums real soon as your comment will be front and center now. So you really think the "spin" community is savvy? Don't make me laugh as I had too much pork yesterday.

    I gave you a comment that should help your readers. If you cannot understand that, …. you know what you can do as well.

    Matter of fact; by posting in "your" blog, I'm adding to your content. Why is that some people cannot take constructive criticism?

    If you really believe that ONE damn link helped those sites to the top, then you and your readers certainly do need help.

    Everything I posted in my prior post is true.

  20. DazzlinDonna says:

    Sigh…I was told I would regret being so bitchy once my fever broke, and that's true. Now I'll find a bit more medicine and go get more sleep. I hate being sick. Uck.

  21. mvandemar says:

    Donna; You can check my forums real soon as your comment will be front and center now.

    Doug, how is it that half the time you get into some disagreement with others you allow yourself to wind up sounding like some sad, lonely stalker type?

    Seriously, last time I was at your forums I was profoundly reminded of David Koresh and the branch Davidians, you and your little cronies all patting each other on the back about how holy you all are. Do you not realize yet, even at your age, how strongly your true inner self shows through every time you highlight how important it is to your ego to tear other people down and belittle them?

    Add up all the joy you get from acting holier than thou to those you consider beneath you, Doug. Literally go back through the last months worth of your online rants, and make a tally of every time you talked down to someone, and make a little score next to each as to how good it made you feel. I know that even as you read this you are deluding yourself into thinking that what I'm saying here isn't important… but try it and then say I'm wrong. Once you've done that, imagine subtracting all that joy out of your life.

    See what's left, Doug. I bet it ain't pretty.

  22. Praveen says:

    Hi Donna

    Please share more information on SEO, Link building, This is a promise from my end that I will share all my secrets to you as well..

    Whatever I know I can share it with you, if you decide to share your secrets with me…

    Please email me at kpraveenkumars AT gmail DOT com

    Let me know your thoughts on this agreement…

  23. SEMSpot says:

    Doug you sure like to troll around peoples blogs and dish out some trash on people who use sphinn. Same type of comment on slightlyshadyseo's blog, yes your the extreme white hat…you don't see up to par with Danny and the community he has help formed, you think your shit doesn't stink….blah blah blah wake me up when you have something informative and actually productive to say.

  24. I'm amused that when a blogger (Donna) offers something for free that some (Doug) can bash her down for it. After all, it was free, wasn't it?

    So my thinking is that what have we got to loose from trying out Donna's secret tip (if she cares to share)?

    Since we are all aiming to get to number one in Google (or should anyway), using her secret might just help to do this. I for myself will certainly give this a real go and will report back to you Donna.

    Thank you for your generosity. And I Luv your humor. :-)

  25. Bruce says:

    Okay Donna, I'm very curious. I just found your site but I'm sure I will become a regular reader. Please share this tip with me through my email above. I promise I will keep it to myself.

    I need all the help I can get after the issues I faced last month

  26. mattstoddart says:

    Jesus Christ, Doug….you are SO lame. Every time I see a comment from you, it's on a blog that you claim doesn't know shit about SEO. So my question is, why are you here? You never offer anything of value yet you always seem to piss people off. Maybe you should just keep quiet, you know?

  27. This post by itself, despite it being just a "vague" description of what you did, is such a great "sales" post that if you charge even a buck to interested SEOs, you'd be making a lot from it πŸ˜‰

    Just reached here today, had a nice read. Hoping that your feeds do some good as well. :)

  28. Mark says:

    Can you please e-mail me and tell me the big SEO secret? If you do that I can post it on my blog. I'm not really one for trying to stifle the flow of information, not the "nah nah I've got a secret but you have to beg for me to tell you" one.


    Yes, that comment was childish and inflammatory, I left it a few days but this post really got up my nose.

    Apart from this one post, I really enjoy reading you're blog and you seem like a nice person and a good SEO. I only tend to comment when I have something bad to say.

  29. DazzlinDonna says:

    /sigh. try to help people without ruining it for everyone and look what happens. Whatever.

  30. […] speaking about SEO apparently gets me labeled either as an idiot or a pretentious windbag, I'm going to switch gears and mention something totally unrelated […]

  31. Robert Paulson says:

    @Doug – I haven't read all the drama beyond your first comment, but to your first comment I say this –

    Since you can't be 100% sure, I mean beyond a shadow of a doubt, that ANYTHING will work to boost your rankings, then you (Doug) should probably not do anything, and just sit in front of your PC wringing your hands, wondering and worrying why your sites aren't improving in rank.

    @Mark – You sir, are a weenie. Do you really think ALL of the best tips and tricks for SEO are out in the open for all to read? If you believe that, then the reasons why fortune tellers try to sell you your fortunes at pennies per minute instead of picking consistent million-dollar lottery winners for themselves probably makes perfect sense to you.

    Personally, I don't get it.

    @Donna – You get this no matter what you do, no matter what industry – don't let it get you down. Remember – because of Mark's location he probably has no experience with a .357 (or was it a .44 you toted around after Katrina). The two of you get at it and my money's on you. πŸ˜‰

  32. Mark says:

    "Apart from this one post, I really enjoy reading youΒ’re blog and you seem like a nice person and a good SEO. I only tend to comment when I have something bad to say."

    Did that not sink in? I don't see what all the hostility is for. I expressed a negative opinion about one, post. Big deal. Yes, because of your location, I suppose the first answer is to shoot anybody that disagrees with you, nice one.

    I'm well aware that the "best" SEO "tricks" are not published for all to see on blogs, but your psychic analogy made me laugh. Donna is basically saying "here's a good trick – email me and ill tell you" – sounds a bit like a psychic hotline to me!

    The fact is, if you want real "seo tricks", you don't get them from blogs. You get them from learning about programming, algorithms and good old fashion testing yourself.

    I stand by my statement and I'll continue to read this blog. If you want to throw some more "weenie" insults my way, I've got broad shoulders, go for it. :)

  33. DazzlinDonna says:

    Mark, despite your kind words about me and the blog at the end of your post, the rest of the post sounded like an attack, and you can't blame people when they rise up to defend me from attackers. It's not like you didn't do anything at all to provoke it. But having said that, no one should insult you either, so let's end this here and now.

    I had a tip to share but I don't want to share it with the world, because that just ensures that it will end up being ruined. So, I offered to share it with people I know I can trust. I don't see how that is worthy of criticism, but if you, Doug, and anyone else wants to criticize me for it, go ahead. I'll tell all my friends to let it happen, and will ask them not to defend my actions. Will that make everything better?

    Now, everyone, put down the harsh words and let's move on. Those of you who received my tip – good luck with it (and yes, I've already heard of some good results from it from some of you). Those of you that I don't know well enough to be able to trust, sorry, but maybe in time I'll be able to do so. Stay in touch, and perhaps I'll eventually be sure that you aren't a search engine spy.

  34. Robert Paulson says:

    @ Mark – I did read that "..I only comment…" part. Total cop out.

    The whining in that comment sickened me. And it looks like you don't enjoy getting responses in kind. Lesson in there somewhere?

    Sorry, Donna – I'm like the little brother who always wants to charge in to defend his big sister when I think she's been slighted. Unfortunately, you can probably expect more of the same from me in the future.

  35. Mark says:

    lol, i'm pleased I "sickened" you, obviously doesn't take much.

    "Sorry, Donna – IΒ’m like the little brother who always wants to charge in to defend his big sister when I think sheΒ’s been slighted."

    Maybe an idea for a business there? Some kind of Internet bodyguard, reputation protection? :)

    Hope you stop puking soon!

  36. bandmaster says:

    Hi Donna, just started to read your comments and I must commend you, cracking, simple and effective writing. whats the best way to pm you for the tip on the type of links. let me know. cheers.

  37. 5ubliminal says:

    Your post sounds so much like mine … I think you copied it from me … I'll ask Copyscape later.

    Anyway … keep those links to yourself … don't tell'em to anyone except me :)

  38. DazzlinDonna says:

    Hmmm, well, 5ubliminal, since you wrote your post 10 days AFTER I wrote mine, I seriously doubt I copied yours. :)

  39. […] the end of last year Donna wrote "Some Days I Wish This Blog Were Private So I Could Share More" giving some vague but interesting hints as to how certain links can give a site a boost, and […]

  40. hello donna, I'm a new reader here and I just landed at your site via andy beard's. You've got a lot of great stuff, i also signed up for your feed. Now that I've totally sucked up to you :-) , would you send me this info? I won't share this with my readers but will use it to optimize some of my affiliate campaigns. I also agree that some things should not be general knowledge because this will diminish it's effective and if the big G finds out, well then it's curtains ….

  41. 5ubliminal says:

    Paycheck forger dude … u made my day! This is the most entertaining read. OMG!

    PS: She'll send the info over if you do a lap-dance too! Don't be just small talk … put your money where your mouth is!

  42. seanmag says:

    what a disappointing thread read after a fun little post. i don't get how this seo community can be so mean to each other at times. the bickering…

    unfortunately, it starts to kind of suck you in. i think i'm going to heed your advice donna and take a day or so off. hell, i might even take a shower..

  43. Howard says:

    Let's just be grateful for all the tips we get anyhow from this great blog.

    OK – congrats to the Inner Circle for getting more insights – but just look at the "Matt Cutts" posting for general consumption.

    This blog must have reputation if Google drops by!

  44. Hello Dazzlin':
    I'm so new that it's impossible for me to read between the lines. If you'd share the specifics with me, I promise that it won't be made public by me.

  45. Hi Donna,

    I want to know your tip, come on. Just send me an email. I promise I won't share.

    Unlike you, I decided to create my membership site to share more with my members and dedicate all my time to them.


  46. Wavy Davy says:

    Does Mr Hell ever stop roaming and bitching everywhere?

    Why don't you just stay at your own forum you pillock.

    Methinks you are a sad sack whiner that is never happy and ,perchance, jealous of people in the business that are popular and well known for being positive and thus likeable.

    bloody misery – is Paulie Walnuts available???

    David Saunders

  47. George Manty says:

    Ok, Donna I am curious. Please email me at the email I left or any other email you have of mine.

    And I won't tell anyone unless they offer $75,000 and if they do I will split it with you πŸ˜‰

  48. Ok, I'm curious. Please email the info to me at my email I entered for this comment.

  49. […] Google may remember old links that have lost juice for a period of time after they have been removed. Donna has spent some time looking into this. […]

  50. Mel Nelson says:

    Seems like there are two sorts in this world – Those who try to help others and those who try to tear down others without reason.

    Donna seems to me to be in the first class based on this blog and many of the comments I have seen from her on SEO forums.

    Doug Heil – Well he's pretty obviously in the second camp – again based on his posts her and the many, many other holier than thou posts I have seen from him around the SEO community.

    IMO your secret is a great marketing ploy Donna – hope it helps you and those you share it with.

  51. […] when I was moaning about wishing this blog was private so I could share more? Well, I did share my little secret with a select few people that I trusted, […]