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Linking facts

February 28, 2011 Uncategorized Leave a comment

Proper Link Building and its effects on SEO

What exactly counts as a good link? All links are equal right? Does placement of links matter? What about the link text? Does it matter what site I get my links from? What is a no-follow link? These are all excellent questions and just a few of the ones I hear on a daily basis by those trying to build links for their websites. Though a lot of folk think that link building is a part of SEO it is actually a part of SEM and it is probably the most complex part of SEM that there is.

Optimally a good link is one that is on a website that has content that pertains in some extension to your site (such as you sell fertilizer and their site is about gardening) a specific link to the relevant page is better than a link to your home page, further this link is placed in a side bar or in the page text. Search engines will value the link to your website on many factors including: content relevancy, the linking sites authority, link placement, and  page linked to.

There are no specific percentages of what factor is most important but we do know that not all links are equal. A link from a site with good authority in a field related to you is worth far more than an optimally placed link on an unrelated website or site with no authority.

Link placement comes into play a lot more than people realize. Most links are seen down in the footer and so one would think that is where they would be most valuable, but that is wrong. Search engines have caught onto the fact that people will throw a bunch of links into their footer to have others do the same for them. Really, you want your link either in the text of a specific page or site-wide in their sidebar. The search engines seem to equate the higher a link is placed with it having more importance. The site the link is on will still need to be a good one though to gain maximum value from the link.

Link text should be three or four keyword targeted words about the link that make sense to people when read. Sometimes you may not get to choose these but when doing a link exchange or guest post to obtain links for your site I recommend providing them with the specific page link you want used as well as a title tag (keyword stuffed sentence) and link text (3 or 4 words describing your service) in hopes of gaining the most from the link.

Relevancy of a site to yours is very important. You do not want to be selling plant fertilizer and have a link on a site about cell phones. Such a link even has the potential to be harmful to your site if the search engines believe you are spamming or paying for link posting because such sites have nothing in common with your site.

Finally, a no follow link is one that gives no credit. So if a site gives you a no-follow link then you get no credit for having that link on their site. Likewise if you want to link to a site but do not know their credibility or if they have no true relation to your content then you can give them a no-follow link which does not help with SEM value but does help with marketing value by directing traffic to their site (or your site if you are given a no-follow link by someone.)

These are some of the most important factors to know about link building. Try to keep all of these things in mind when acquiring links or writing guest blogs for others. This step is critical to your search engine marketing efforts and should probably take about half of your effort or budget. You cannot always dictate who will link to your site but often by talking to a site that does you can get them to alter the link for optimal SEM purposes. Quality always trumps quantity when it goes to your back links, that is the number one rule these days.