If you're in SEO and internet marketing niche, where do you promote your business and talk to industry peers?
Sure thing, there're lots of social media places where web promoters hang out, including Google+ communities, Quora, Facebook groups and such.
Yet there are good old forums that are also worth signing up to.
In this post, you'll find
- Detailed description of top 5 SEO forums, with stats and a drilldown of marketing options
- Exclusive official blurb from one of the top forum owners
- A broader list of SEO forums, including non-English boards
Top 5 SEO forums and how I've chosen them
I'll start with a detailed description of 5 forums that work best for Link-Assistant.Com and me personally. They either bring us considerable traffic or my own faves because of helpful discussions. So it's a biased list to some extent, yet I do think these boards are really famous in the SEO world.
Note: stats on Alexa rank, Google PageRank, the number of members, posts and threads are relevant to the publication date only.
Traffic in April 2013: 231,097 (according to Compete)
Alexa Traffic Rank: 227 (global), 167 (US)
Google PR: 5
Warriorforum is by far the biggest and probably the most renowned forum in the SEO world. We've been running an official account there for 2 years, and there are multiple benefits we've seen as a result:
- speaking directly to our customers to get first-hand feedback
- addressing common support issues publicly
- reaching out to industry influencers and seeing them become our brand advocates and affiliates
- announcing our important updates in the ad section
- all sort of improved brand recognition: whenever a thread on SEO tools starts, there'll surely be several forum members who jump in and mention SEO PowerSuite. Sweet!
Warriorforum's threads are a mixed bag. Some of them are not very advanced, others answer difficult and specific SEO questions.
The best thing about Warriorforum is that there are dozens of fresh threads started every day, so if you're committed to adding value, you'll find great talks to join.
If you're promoting your product, consider the following marketing options:
(1) Becoming a War Room Member. There is a one-time fee of $37 to come one. There's a list of benefits this category of members get, yet the major one I see is reputation. I noticed I tend putting more trust with people who have a red War Room Member note under their avatar: for me it's one of indications they endorse the community and are there to stay.
(2) Warrior Forum Classified Ads. Here you can post your updates that would be considered promotional in the main Adsense / PPC / SEO Discussion Forum. The cost of one announcement is 20 USD. Though not many members browse through the ad section, your thread will show up in search results in Google Discussions for relevant keywords, so you'll get your traffic anyway.
(3) Warrior Special Offers (WSOs). We did it once and I can't say it brought many sales, yet many people testify they're cool, so I included this marketing option here.
In a nutshell, a WSO is your exclusive deal for the warriorforum community. These would often be packaged link building services, ebooks on making money online, keyword tools and such. For the relevant WSO price quote, contact the forum support.
Traffic: no data
Alexa Traffic Rank: 7,295 (global), 646 (GB)
Google PR: 5
I like ukbusinessforums for their very special close-knit community atmosphere and meaningful discussions. I mean there are zero-value spamy threads as well, but if you encounter a talk of guys with 1,000+ post track, stay! They'll give you more SEO wisdom than you can take.
Ukbusinessforums are a must-have if you're based in the UK and/or your online business targets google.co.uk. Many discussions cover how to do local SEO, which is gives this board an extra edge.
If you've no connection to the UK, the forum is also helpful in many ways anyway. My personal fave is Sales, Marketing & PR section, very insightful.
What marketing options do brands have with ukbusinessforums?
Promoting business is better served through full membership, which is £30 per year. It allows marketing your product or service directly in relevant sections and associates more trust with you among the members.
Traffic in April 2013: 37,484 (according to StatCounter)
Alexa Traffic Rank: 11,311
Google PR: 3
Traffic Planet is another powerful player to look at. It was founded by Terry Kyle, who kindly shared his ideas with me on what Traffic Planet is about:
Traffic Planet was created because existing Internet Marketing forums like the Warrior Forum and Digital Point tend to have a big newbie member base - nothing wrong with that at all but inevitably online marketers have to 'graduate' to something more advanced.
In a way, Traffic Planet is 'postgrad Warrior Forum' and has a much bigger emphasis on conversions optimization, detailed how-to tutorials, online business management systems and live experiments (traffic and conversion) than Warrior Forum, a great place for newbie beginners to start.
In 2013, Traffic Planet will continue to be at the front of the revolution in conversions optimization that is now growing in Internet Marketing.
Terry Kyle, Founder, Traffic Planet
Many of SEOs who've been in the industry for a while should remember that Terry used to co-run another board, backlinksforum.com. It ceased to exist a couple of years ago, and the majority of members switched to Traffic Planet, which is yet another proof the community hosts seasoned SEOs.
It's also a place to ask tough SEO questions. That said, it's great in bringing traffic.
There are banner and classified advertising options available. We once ran a classified thread and it worked out good. Classified ads are $40 a month, so if you're announcing something time-sensitive, like a sale, remember to cancel it for the second month.
Traffic in April 2013: 81,364
Alexa Traffic Rank: 496
Google PR: 3
Despite the title and the possible first impression that joining means endorsement of something which is against Google Guidelines, BlackHatWorld is also a community that is worth your attention. You'll be surprised to find out there are many white hat guys pure there.
Discussion at BlackHatWorld might not always sound valuable from the SEO/internet marketing standpoint. It's a crowded and mixed place, and it's really hard to find SEO wisdom in the stream of one-liners flavored with skeletons on avatars.
What we do on BlackHatWorld is run a support account. Members often mention SEO PowerSuite and BuzzBundle and we want to make sure we're right there to handle their concerns or thank them for their mentions and feedback.
Traffic in April 2013: 88,174
Alexa Traffic Rank: 703
Google PR: n/a
Digital Point has become notorious for mostly spamy and low-quality discussions. It might not be #1 place to seek SEO knowledge, yet let's give the board its due: Digital Point is one of the oldest and the most crowded places and it's amazing from advertising standpoint.
In particular, keyword bids work wonders. These are inline text ads that show up in Digital Point threads. An advertiser feeds in a keyword list and suggests maximum CPC bid. If someone mentions your keyword in a post and your bid is the highest, there'll be a link to your site.
Just make sure you have a really long list of keywords (we have about a hundred phrases) and the keywords are tailored to fit forum posts naturally.
And it really works: even moderate investment brings hundreds of Visits monthly.
More SEO forums
There are also quite a number of forums that didn't make the major list, still I'm gonna enumerate them below.
Please note that I didn't include them to the upper section of this post not because they are worse or less efficient or host fewer pros. It's just because I'm personally not quite familiar with them or I tried them previously but didn't stay for some reasons.
But they may work well for you, so I encourage you to go through a broader SEO forum list:
Essential non-English SEO forums
Find SEO forums with BuzzBundle
Also don't forget that BuzzBundle is an amazing tool to find hot forum discussions and add new boards to your list of SEO forums.
Download BuzzBundle now and find communities where most relevant talks take place this very moment!
YOUR favorite SEO forums
Over to you now. And are you an active member of any forums? Did you join for marketing or for learning? Have I missed any crucial SEO boards? Share your ideas in the comments!