Getting Linked

11 February

Getting Linked

A guaranteed method to boosting your visibility on the web is by link building. When I say link building, I'm talking about quality link building. Anyone can chuck a handful of links at sites like del.icio.us or Yahoo Answers or Wikipedia, but those are typically sources of constant updating and offer only temporary traffic. To stand against time, you'll need to invest time, and as the saying goes, "Nothing worth having comes without some kind of fight."

The Basics

In 'There's No Such Thing as a Worthless Link', Debra Mastaler lists off a short set of guidelines by which she follows to build rank-influenced links:

- Place links on indexed pages.
- Look for web sites with strong established inbound link patterns.
- Use multiple variations of anchor text and point to optimized pages.
- Hyperlink whole sentences using associated text and keyword anchors when you can.
- Use online advertising venues with offline counterparts for keyword association and branding.

Not too much of a hassle, right? Well, you can't go around peddling a link unless you have content to sell. It's a topic that brilliantly segues into the key to offering an appealing link—good content. If that's a sparse and malnourished side to your site, then the only sources that are going to want to link you are the ones you won't benefit from.

Do Your Research

Where you need to be directing your link-building campaign toward are Authority sites; those that rank well for a set of keywords, are influential and high-profile, and your competitor's websites. Make contacts with those "Authorities"; do your research and find out who is linking them and make even more contacts. It will feel a little like the first day at a new school, but if you're serious about it, you'll do it and it will prove beneficial in the whole scheme of things.

How to Get Linked

It is safe to assume that many high-profile sites receive a slew of link requests, so to stand out you should have an incentive prepared; something along the lines of a discount for a product, an offer to reciprocate links, or even blog you've written about the contact, prior to your request. It's all about attention, and webmasters love nothing more than seeing their names hyperlinked.

Summary

Link building, procuring links that will actually mean something and drive attention to your site, is a process. There is no getting around it. It requires a proportionate combination of content and the available resources to invest into researching your competition and making that first contact.

TAGS: SEO