Elaborating on a post from last month How do I get to the top of Google? where I stressed the importance of quality inbound links, we will now look further at what defines the “quality” of a link and how do you get them?
What determines link quality?
- The best way to determine a links quality is to assess the relevance of the link. A link from a page on the same topic, sharing the same keywords as the receiving page is of far more value than a link from a page about an entirely different topic.
- Obviously, the stronger the website the better the quality of the link. A link from a mainstream news website that gets a lot of traffic will be a high quality link. Avoid Link Farms and Exchanges, the quality of the links generated by these schemes is very low and will harm you in the end.
- Links that use anchor text are of higher value. Anchor text is when a link uses a keyword in the text of the hyperlink. When linking avoid the commonly used click here”.
- Links from within the main content of a blog post or page is worth way more than a link from a sidebar or a footer
- the more links there are on a page, the less each individual link is worth
How to build quality links:
Google says, “If your site is rather new and still unknown, a good way marketing technique is to get involved in the community around your topic. Interact and contribute on forums and blogs.”
As I said in last month’s post, the starting point should be to setup social media profiles and ensure that each profile links back to your website. Very recently I started a new encaustic art blog & directory it isn’t ranking well yet so all traffic will come from social media and community involvement. I created a twitter account, a facebook page, and a flickr group. I found facebook groups on the subject, joined them and announced my new site. I found other related facebook pages and liked them from my page. I found other flickr groups to join and told people there about my site. I followed hundreds of others on twitter who use the search term #encaustic or #art, many of them returned the follow. I found a Ning community and I started commenting and interacting. The purpose of these interactions was not to build links, but these authentic online interactions will bring traffic and links. Looking at the Google Analytics graph of visits to my site I can see that the days I was more active in communities generated a lot more traffic.
Commenting on other blogs allows you to post a link back to your site. Even if the links are nofollow links they will drive related traffic back to your blog/website. Make sure that your comments add value to the post in a positive and constructive way.
Look for good on-topic directories.
“Directory entries are often mentioned as another way to promote young sites in the Google index. There are great, topical directories that add value to the Internet.” All Things Encaustic has a directory for encaustic art links and I am asking people to reciprocate with a link back to my site. This will create a win-win linking situation.
Guest blogging on a more established site with an author profile link back to your site is one great way to build your reputation in your niche and provides some inbound links.
Consider a press release if appropriate, who knows maybe the mainstream press will pick up on your story or event and link to you!
Get Social: Create social media profiles and link to your site. Then share you quality content on social platforms. This will help others find your content and help you build a loyal following.
Google also emphasizes that any “legitimate link building strategy is a long-term effort.” Don’t expect overnight results. Set up both Google Analytics and Google Webmaster tools for your site. With these tools you can easily see assess how you’re doing.
Please add your comments. What link building strategies have worked best for you.