Search Engine Optimization Marketing – Get the Right Inbound Links to Get Top Rankings

October 31, 2008 by  Filed under: other 
 

Search engine optimization is all about making sure your site achieves the top search engine rankings your online business needs to be a success.

There are two kinds of search engine optimization marketing techniques: on-page and off-page search engine optimization. On-page search engine optimization focuses on preparing, or “optimizing,” your website so the search engines can accurately index your site through the strategic placement of keywords.

But link-building — off-page search engine optimization marketing — is just as important…

There’s nothing the search engines value more than one-way links from relevant, respected sites. So naturally, over the years people have thought up all sorts of tricks for getting inbound links with no effort — link farms, link brokers, link exchanges — and they do work…

… But only for a while.

Then the search engines shut ’em down, and any site that uses those search engine optimization tactics drops like a rock from wherever they were in the search results. But the right kind of search engine optimization inbound linking strategy will catapult you to the top of the search results and KEEP you there.

Here’s a quick overview of what makes a great link… because a few good links are worth far more than hundreds of bad links. The first marketing rule of search engine optimization link-building is Quality, Not Quantity!

Great inbound links…

  • Come from relevant sites. This is the first criterion of the search engines. If your site is about dog training, don’t go after a link from a site that sells piano lessons.
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  • Look natural. If people were linking to your website naturally, they wouldn’t all use the same anchor text, and they wouldn’t all link to you in the same week. So when you’re on the hunt for inbound links, vary the anchor text and build them up gradually over time.
  • Come from a variety of online sources. Try blogs, PDF documents, e-zines and newsletters that get web space.
  • Come from sites with a regular flow of incoming traffic. Use the free Alexa toolbar to get an idea of how much traffic your target sites get. If a site is not even getting good traffic in Alexa, then it’s probably not worth pursuing.
  • Aren’t lost among dozens of other links. You don’t want the page your link is on to have more than two dozen outbound links… and the fewer the better (unless the link is from a directory).
  • Are on sites that are indexed regularly. Look on your Google toolbar to see if the PageRank bar is grayed out… which means it’s not being indexed at all!
  • Check the Google cache date of the site and page where your listing would appear and make sure it’s recent.
  • You can also see how many pages of that site are being indexed. Use the “Site Explorer” tool for Yahoo, or search “site:http://www.nameofdirectory” in Google. If only a few pages are being indexed, it’s probably worth moving on.
  • Are not reciprocal. Reciprocal linking as a search engine optimization strategy is not dead, but it’s not nearly as effective as getting inbound links. A few reciprocal links on your pages are natural, but if all your links are reciprocal they’ll just cancel each other out.
  • Are on sites that have been around for a while. Domain age does come into play because the search engines assume that an older site is more credible. These older websites have also had time to do their search engine optimization marketing and build up their site authority.
  • Are on sites with high Google PageRank. The more links you can get from high PageRank sites, the higher you’ll get ranked in Google’s listings. However, if you find a website that would be a great partner but the PageRank is 3 or lower, you still want to work with them!
  • Are placed in a good position on the site. Negotiate to get your link embedded in a natural position — usually within some text in the main body area. The search engines can discredit links found in the footer, right-hand side or other popular areas where advertising usually goes.
  • Don’t stress about getting your link on the home page. Deep links within a strong complementary website are still a great marketing strategy for search engine optimization.

Building quality inbound links is an essential search engine optimization strategy! Inbound links to your site tell the search engines that other sites respect your content… and no marketing is more convincing than that.

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