Reaching out to bloggers and webmasters isn’t that difficult. Generally they are happy to hear from manufacturers and retailers, and if you ask correctly, they will grant your favor. There is however a wrong way to reach out. Here’s one such example sent from a large marketing agency which apparently handles Search Engine Optimization for Macys.com:
Title: URGENT REQUEST – Incorrect link to Macys.com
Body: I’m contacting you on behalf of Macy’s, Inc. We completed a recent analysis that indicates your blog is linking to Macys.com, which we greatly appreciate. Per Macy’s guidelines, we are requesting you make updates to the hyperlink text when you link to Macy’s. Providing clearer anchor text will give your visitors a better user experience.
Please respond at your earliest convenience, so we can discuss the changes.
Now maybe I’m overreacting, but as both an experienced Webmaster and fellow SEO Strategist I can’t help but be bothered by this email. I’m glad that they appreciate the link, and reaching out is always worth a try, but the request simply doesn’t feel genuine and use of the phrase “Per Macy’s guidelines” is something I don’t like to hear. I don’t work for Macy’s.
Merriam-Webster definition of guideline:
an indication or outline of policy or conduct
Certainly there’s a better way to word their email.
- First - Don’t come at me, a niche blogger with absolutely zero agenda within my post, pushing corporate policies.
- Second - If you want more specific anchor text for SEO purposes just come out and say it. Don’t claim that my visitors will have a “better experience” because of it. In this case they honestly wouldn’t.
- Third - Don’t be so damn robotic about the whole thing.
What was the anchor text in question? It was in a blog post from 2007 mentioning a new clothing brand. Macy’s was the anchor text (it could be much, much worse). Macy’s… consider your link removed.
/rant offEmail, Macy's, SEO