An insider’s perspective on Wikipedia and SEO

I had the pleasure of interviewing a well-respected Wikipedia editor who specializes in Wikipedia articles about search engine optimization. He also happens to be an SEO consultant. His name is Jonathan Hochman. The interview covers a range of things including how to build up your reputation as an editor, how to deal with people trying to delete an article you authored, the Notability test, external links, photos and Creative Commons licensing, the Village Pump, and more. That interview is available as a 40 minute long podcast.

Download/listen to the MP3 » (18 Megs)

I incorporated parts of the interview into my SEO How To article for Practical Ecommerce Magazine last month — “Can Wikipedia Help Your Business?” — so be sure to check that out too.

Some of my favorite tips from the article, some of which come from me and some from Jonathan, include:

  • Reputation is everything. Do this by building a solid history of edits that aren’t self-serving.
  • Engage with Wikipedians through your Talk page, their Talk page, and the Talk pages of entries you wish to contribute to.
  • Create an informative User page to build credibility and boost social networking.
  • When someone reverts your edit, seek clarification by asking them what you could do differently.
  • Make sure any new entry includes references to back it up. If the entry is for an author, reference their book’s ISBN number to support your case for notability. If the entry is for a company, link to a press mentions page on their website so that Wikipedians can establish level of notability.
  • Monitor entries that are important to you by using the “watch” function within Wikipedia so that when you log in you will be alerted to any changes to those entries.
  • After adding a new entry, build PageRank by internal links from other Wikipedia pages.