Well, no one…except search engines! If you want people to read your page on the web, you need to have plenty of incoming links pointing right at your site. Search engines value the quantity, quality, and relevance of these links. The trouble with getting “backlinks” to your site, as they are called, is it’s kind of difficult. The best way to receive high quality links is by creating a quality page or site. It’s one of the most important steps in your SEO campaign!
How the Big Sites Build Their Backlinks
Build it…and they will link?
Sites like Amazon, eBay, MySpace and of course, Squidoo, have thousands and thousands of links that hop to their site. They also don’t have to do much to get these links! Why?
Because they have something worth linking to! They don’t ask for links, they just get them. Sites like these might also have thousands of affiliate marketers linking to their site. So you’re probably wondering how you can get as many links as these sites have…the answer is simple! Create something that is a valuable resource for people. If you can create something that is the go-to place for information on a certain topic, the traffic will come.
Link Exchanges…Yes or No??
Does Reciprocal Linking Help or Hurt?
Link exchanges can be good, and can be bad. There are a number of services out there that will connect you with other similar websites (or totally random sites) to exchange links with. Some search engines penalize these sites, often referred to as “link farms.” There is a fine-line drawn between link farms and link exchanges, so watch out. You say tomato, I say tomato sauce!
Some webmasters like to exchange links via reciprocal linking
. This process is great if the site is relevant to your site. For instance, if your site is about tomatoes and you decide to link to a site about home foreclosures, this wouldn’t help you in the search engines. However, if you linked to a site about tomato sauce, now we’re talking!
Backlinks are still more heavily valued by search engines than reciprocal links. The ranking of the site you are linking to also plays a factor for your
pagerank. Always aim high, and try to get a link on a site with an equal or better rank. How do you know who’s linking to you?
Find out who is linking to you!
To find out how many inbound links you have, you can use a Backlink Checker
. This one in particular will tell you the number of Google results, Yahoo results, and Alexa rank.
How Search Engines Work
And how they determine the “value” of your site
Search engines are complicated, and have convoluted formulas to determine a website’s page rank. To find sites on the web, search engines have “web crawlers” to crawl the web through every link it finds. The search engines then apply their algorithm to the site and determine the page rank. Backlinks (or inward links) are always a part of this equation. To search engines, the number and quality of backlinks are an indicator of the importance and popularity of a site. There are many other factors search engines consider, like the age of the site, URL name, image or filenames on the site, anchor text, and keywords in the content.
Gain a link and some traffic by posting in forums
If you’ve ever visited a forum, you know that they are an excellent source of information that you can often not find anywhere else. Some also receive a very high amount of traffic and are a huge opportunity for whatever niche your site may fall into. By making an effective signature link for each your posts, you can see an increase in traffic. This traffic is often highly targeted. Rules for Forums
- Upload an avatar if possible so that forum users come to know you by your image that’s next to your posts
- Make a signature that’s appropriate but effective, not out of control, large and obnoxious
- Be courteous to other members in forums
- Stay on topic and add something relevant to conversations, don’t just drop something in to leave your signature
- Respond often for the best results!
Forum links may not be a heavily weighted link, but its a link, and it drives traffic.