Having built many, many websites in the past two years, you’d think I would know a lot about link building strategies. Well, I do. Linkbuilding for new sites, can get your site ranking very fast, but it’s more beneficial to build links slowly.
The first type of links I’d like to discuss are internal links. Internal links are the links in your site linking to other pages within your site. These can either be in a widget on the site, or in the body text. Links in the body text are valued higher by Google.
The main use of these links are to drive traffic to certain areas of your site. Say you have a site with twenty articles and two of those articles are written for the intent of selling something, and the other articles are just there to provide support, and get more traffic from search engines. You can use these other pages, and link to the articles that are written for making sales. This will not only get people clicking to these articles; it will also tell the search engines that these are the most important articles in your site, and you most likely see an improvement in the rankings for these articles.
There are a few plugins for WordPress that do this job. The best one in my opinion is SEO Smart Links. Plus it’s free. With this plugin you can select a certain article that will automatically get linked to whenever you mention a certain keyword in your site. So whenever you publish a post and it contains your specific keyword, it will be linked to the page that you specify.
Linkbuilding Be Crucial Up In The Webbernets!
Alright, now let’s talk about SEO directories. Are they worth your time? Should you spend time, and sometimes money submitting to SEO directories that you find?
Mind you, there are hundreds of them if not thousands. In my opinion, they aren’t worth it.
Think about how links would be built naturally to a site. Links that appear normally for sites are ones that are built by other webmasters that like your content, and link to it. Your site might be socially bookmarked. But the only way you are going to get in directories is if you do this yourself, and Google knows this. If Google sees that your site is being submitted to a bunch of directories, it can figure out that you’re trying to build links to it yourself, and it appears very unnatural, and can actually hurt your rankings.
So I would not waste time submitting to directories. It is not a very effective link building strategy If you are stubborn and still want to though, I would recommend DMOZ and the Yahoo directories, because these will provide you the highest amount of value to your site.
Comment links are pretty cool because they are so easy to get. You simply look up blogs related to your post, and throw your keywords in the anchor text. Contrary to what a lot of people think, I believe that comments provide a good amount of link juice to your site. If you go through and search for sites ranking for their targeted keywords, you will notice that a lot of their backlinks are blog comments. So if they are so ineffective, then why would sites be ranking with so many backlinks from comments.
The reason I think blog commenting gets a bad reputation is because people approach it the wrong way. If you have a site, a good method of building links with comments would be building five or ten links from blogs a day, and doing it over the course of a month or longer. But some people will link back to their blogs through comments and spend only a day or two building hundreds of links, which doesn’t look too good to Google. Links aren’t going to naturally appear in bunches over the course of a few days, they are going to be built over time, and if you do this, you’ll notice better results.
So what about paid links? Paid links are by definition offering cash in exchange for a do-follow link in return. Even though they are against Google’s terms of service, they still can be beneficial if the site linking is an authority site, or has a good page rank. Just don’t get caught by Google for it and you’ll be OK.
.Gov and .Edu Links
.Gov and .Edu links are very valuable.
.Gov and .Edu links are HUGE. They are the holy grail of links in internet marketing. They can have a massive impact on helping a page rank for targeted keywords. Definitely do a search for .gov and .edu blogs and get some backlinks to your site from them. Don’t get an unusual amount of them though, because again, it will appear unnatural. You will notice, on a lot of these sites, there will be over 500 comments on posts, because people realize the value of these links. You will notice a greater benefit from finding and commenting on blogs with a smaller amount of comments though. This is because the lower the number of outgoing links from a page, the higher value each link has on the page. Getting a link on a site with 10 outgoing links is way better than one with 600 links spammed across the page.
Social Media Links
Social media links are a good way to get your site indexed fast, but usually do not pass on pagerank, and have the no-follow tag. For every site I make, I use Social Marker, to get a few social media links to my site. This helps me get links from sites like Digg, Reddit, Delicious, Slashdot etc..
Press release links can help you a lot. If you do a press release correctly, you can drive traffic from reputable news sources for a long period of time. In a press release I would link to a specific relevant post in your site, rather than the homepage, so your reader will remain there longer. I own a press release service that distributes your articles over our network of sites, that can help your site get quality links, and traffic. Our service propagates the articles over time, so the articles are built over a period of just over a month and not all at once.
Reciprocal links are the last form of links I’ll mention. Reciprocal links used to be good back in good old days, but currently, Google discounts outbound reciprocal links. This strategy is no longer effective, and is a waste of time.
What have you learned from this post? If you remember anything from this post it should be that link building is a process. Don’t expect immediate results, because you won’t get them. It takes time for Google to trust your site. If you constantly build links to your site over a period of time, and use the right anchor text with your links, you will see your side slide up through the rankings. Slow and steady wins the race, and rushing to quickly build backlinks will only hurt you.