9. Link building & SEO Backlinks
|> website marketing overview >|
|1. overview||2. domain name||3. website hosting||4. website design||5. website optimization||6. submission|
|7. ranking||8. directories||9. link building||10. pay per click||11. development||12. ecommerce|
The importance of ranking highly in the search engines has already been established.
Link Building (building backlinks to your site) is one of the methods used to achieve this.
How do you acquire these backlinks?
There are two basic principles that can be followed to build these links;
- you need to go out and find links, or
- you let the links find you.
There are 3 major categories of link available
Placing a link to a site on your website, with no link received back. These links are not hugely valuable from a search perspective, but may well carry weight with your visitors. Outgoing links would include links to trade organizations that you could belong to (often these organizations will publish a list of members with links back), or authority sites that have general information about your industry. Be careful that you do not choose sites that will drive your visitors elsewhere.
When your site swaps links with another site. It is far less important now than it used to be, and should be approached with caution. Google no longer gives much credence to reciprocal links although the other search engines still give some importance to reciprocal links. Reciprocal links can still be sought but with limited success. Ideally, the website should be of relevance to yours i.e: A highly respected website on the subject of cars that provides a link to a website on the subject of hairdressing may be seen as not related and therefore devalued greatly by the search engines, so the key is to acquire links from respected and related websites. Beware unrelated links as they will at best be ignored, and at worst may even cause your website to be penalized. There is the suggestion that linking to “bad neighbourhoods” can cause your ranking to fall dramatically.
When an external website places a link on their site to yours, but you don’t link back to them. This is without doubt the most important aspect of link building and can be broken down into two areas.
You find related websites.
Find out who links to your competitors – they may also be interested in linking to your website. Do a search on the keywords most important to you and see if any of the sites that come up would be interested in linking to you.
Get listed in directories - research those that are relevant to your industry. Some directories offer paid-for listings, some free listings, and some have both. Give some thought to how you approach the paid-for listings. Be sure they will work for you, and don’t allow yourself to pressured into buying listings whose value you are uncertain of.
Related Websites find you
The principle here is quite simple; produce a website that other people want to link to.
Be sure that you have content that is unique and well-written. Although it might take quite some time and thought to produce the right content for your site, the end result will be that people all round the globe will link to you because of it.
Offer something that will be attractive to other websites: free information; an online calculator; top ten tips etc. Anything that is useful and free!
Articles and press releases submitted to article directories can attract also attract valuable links. Articles should always be written with a view to their content and its impact on the reader, but always bear in mind the acquisition of links as a useful by-product. can be by other sites linking to these articles and press-releases.
Link building can be time consuming. It should be seen as a long term project, and one that benefits most from an ongoing and methodical system. Although it is the foundation of your website marketing strategy, and should be seen as an on-going task, link building cannot work alone. It must be seen as one part of your overall marketing campaign.