In my article on “Is Reciprocal Link Exchange important” I dealt with the importance of reciprocal link exchange. If you read the article you will understand why link building especially through link exchange is losing its value and is a great time waster.
However quality link building is important too for your website for SEO. Search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN give importance to incoming links to a website/page if they are (this is important):
a. coming from a relevant and good quality site,
b. coming from an authoritative site,
b. coming from a webpage because it creates value to their visitors, and
c. coming from any good source like a forum discussion where people are pointing to a site for more information about that particular topic.
Search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN DON’T give importance to incoming links to a website/page if they are (this is important):
a. coming from a link farm. A link farm is any group of web sites that all hyperlink to every other page in the group. Most link farms are generated by software,
b. coming from a webpage that has nothing else but outgoing links,
c. coming from a non-relevant site/page,
d. coming from a blog as a comment spam,
e. coming from a hyperlink with rel=”nofollow” in the href tag,
f. coming from any other source that the search engines feel is a link spam or any other spam technique,
g. coming from a lot of sources, suddenly and fast for no obvious reason,
h. coming as an effort that looks like link exchange or three way link building, and
i. coming as a paid link. Google and many other search engines have ways to catch a paid link. If search engines find a paid link, it’s not considered as a link at all. In that case all the money you pay to get incoming links goes down the drain. And since search engines don’t like paid links, you run the risk of irritating them. Guess what may happen. Its always better to avoid paid links.
Please keep in mind that there many factors that determine the ranking of a site. Inbound links is just one of them.
During 2003-2004 inbound links to a site were given a lot of importance while ranking, but as search engines grew and started feeding in many other factors in their algorithms, the importance of incoming links started to go down. I think it was purely because black-hat webmasters started abusing the web to generate incoming links for their websites in whatever way possible.
Rather than concentrating on their site, improving quality and user experience, they just wasted time in getting incoming links for their site. This was also bringing down the overall quality of the World Wide Web.
How many spam mails do you still get asking you to do a link exchange? Can you imagine, even Google gets such mails.
So, in such a scenario, how to do quality link building for your site?
If your site has good content and offers good value for your visitors, it may come up in search engine result pages; webmasters will find your site, like it and link to it.
However sometimes you need to market your site to let people know a good website exists so that you get more incoming links.
You can also find a list of other good directories by searching them online.
Google gives a lot of importance to your site if its accepted in the DMOZ directory. DMOZ, Yahoo! and many other directories have human editors, and it’s quite apparent that if a human has viewed your site and accepted it in the directory, it must be a quality site.
There are many social bookmarking sites. Most of them offer free registration. You can register there and let people know about your site. Many people are site-owners themselves and if they like your site, may link to your site.
Search for article directories. Submit a good article with links to your site. Some article directories are valued highly by the search engines and a link to your site from a relevant article will count.
Be active in related forums. If you feel there is a topic that needs a mention to your site, give it. If the moderators feel the reason for linking is good, they will not delete it from the post. Secondly active forum members will know about your site and some may link to your site if they own a website.
Write a press release of your site. Please understand that press releases don’t come for free, but they do generate some attention from visitors, as well as the search engines.
Start a blog. Keep posting regularly on topics related to your nature of business. Of course give a link to your site’s relevant pages. This is by far one of the best methods to get incoming links for your site.
Be a guest blog writer for other blogs too. If your article is good, the blog owner will post them in their blogs. Make sure you have a link to your site in those posts.
You can also comment on other blogs. Don’t do comment spam. Unfortunately most of these comments contain rel=”nofollow” in the href tag, so they may not provide any search engine value, but will definitely help exposure of your site online. Many people who read blogs, themselves have blogs. If they find your site useful, they may link to your site.
Distribute free articles for other websites with a link to your site. Note that this method may have some issues such as duplicate content. So be bit careful with this method.
I hope you have got some great link building tips and ideas for your website. If you know some other link building tips, ideas or strategies please leave a comment.