New Features: Link Manager receives significant updates and enhancements

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Our roots are in SEO and our Link Manager has been a core feature since we first launched Raven. While we’ve been busy focusing on new areas of the platform, including Metrics, Insights and Social, we haven’t forgotten about the tools that have gotten us here. I’m excited to announce significant and long overdue enhancements to the Link Manager.

This update includes better customization options, as well as a heavy focus on improving paid link management and reporting.

For the record, a paid link can be a link associated with the sponsorship of an event, a text advertisement that uses rel=”nofollow” or even the type of paid link that gives Matt Cutts night terrors. We have always taken an agnostic approach to how professionals conduct their Internet marketing campaigns. One of our main goals is to provide tools that will enable professionals to be as efficient and successful as possible, and this update continues that approach.

Improved data filtering

The Link Manager used to be limited to a handful of filtering options, but no more. The tool now allows you to filter link records by all Status, Link and Website types, independent of each other. In addition, you can still filter by boolean searches and/or link builders.

Improved Filtering Options

Enhanced management of custom Status, Link and Website types

The user interface (UI) for creating and managing custom Status, Link and Website types has been simplified. The UI now combines default types created by the system with your own custom types. There is one unified list, and you can hide system types and remove custom types. You can also reorder types by drag and drop.

Custom Link Type Management

New custom Paid Link types

The Custom Link Type settings now support the creation of custom Paid Link types. When you create a custom Paid Link type, you can specify if the type is Temporary (Recurring) or Permanent.

Adding custom paid link type

Improved Paid Link record management

The Paid Link records have been enhanced with several new options and tweaks.

Additional Cost types

Paid Link records now support the following Cost types:

  • One Time
  • Daily
  • Weekly
  • Monthly
  • Quarterly
  • Semi-Annually
  • Annually

New Cost options

Link records can now have up to three different cost records.

  • Estimated Cost
  • Actual Cost
  • Client Cost

Smarter Expiration settings

If the Recurring link is a one-time (temporary) link, you are now prompted to add an end date. If the Recurring link isn’t temporary, you are prompted to add a start date instead.

New Paid Link monthly budget

If you have Paid Link records in the Link Manager, you can now specify a monthly Paid Link Budget. You can also specify a custom currency if your currency isn’t listed.

Monthly Paid Link Budget

The budget amount can be displayed on the new Paid Summary report in the Report Wizard.

New Paid Link record alert thresholds

There are new Paid Link alerts that allow you to specify your own thresholds. You can specify the number of days you want the system to alert before a paid link needs to be renewed or will be expiring.

Paid Link Alert Threshold

New Paid Link reporting options

The Report Wizard has a new Link report called Paid Summary. The new report can filter by domain, user, and paid type (Permanent or Recurring). It also includes the option to include Cost types and the monthly budget. If you only include one Cost type, the report will change the label to only say “Cost”. This is useful if the Actual Cost is different from the Client Cost, and you want to create a Paid Summary report for a client.

Paid Link Summary Report

The CSV export has also been updated to better support Paid Link data and to also export link record updates. Link record updates include the date and time of a change, and also the user who made the change.

The little things

We realize that many of our users don’t use paid links in their campaigns, nor do they want to see those options. That’s why we’ve chosen to hide the Paid Link Settings icon and Paid Summary report option in the Report Wizard by default. To display those options, all the user has to do is create a link record that includes a Paid Link type. In addition, if a user doesn’t want Paid Link types to be available for their account, they can go the the Custom Link Type settings, and hide those options.

We also made the decision to hide all cost data for Read-Only users. If a Read-Only user views link records, the cost will be hidden.

What’s next?

We have several additional enhancements to the Link Manager that we’re working on. Those updates should be released before the end of this year. I won’t go into any details, but there’s one completely unique feature we’re working on that I’ve dreamed of doing for years. Stay tuned!