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Link Building And Its Use In SEO

Link Building And Its Use In SEO was written by Matt Jackson Platinum and he writes "Link building has long been heralded as one of the most important aspects of any effective SEO campaign, and with good reason. The major search engines certainly give some weight to the number and quality of inbound links that a website receives. It’s also true that with good links from high traffic websites you can generate a very good amount of direct traffic from your links. However, the evolution of SEO and search engine algorithms means that gaining links from your site has become a different challenge when compared to link building of old.

Reciprocal Link Campaigns – Dead?

Originally, the most commonly used and potentially advantageous method of building links was using a reciprocal link program. The concept is a simple one. By including a link to another website on your resource or links page, they would reciprocate with a link to your own site. However, numerous algorithm changes have made this a less attractive way of gaining links. Too many links on your resource page and you will be flagged as a lank farm or spam site and search engines now tend to give a reciprocal link much less weight than a one way inbound link..

Buying Text Links – Ineffective?

Buying text links from websites also became a popular method to build a strong base of links. Again, though, this is now frowned upon by many of the search engines. They want to see links that have been gained because your site, or you personally, create and publish high quality information and content and provide a top quality service. In an ideal world these links would be gained organically. Webmasters would visit your site through the search engine listings or any other marketing methods and see top quality content, subsequently posting a link to one or more pages on your site. In reality, though, there are several problems with this.

Organic Links – Unobtainable?

Organic links are well and good but you have to have a popular site before you can begin to expect this kind of accolade. If you have no visitors then how can you hope to attract Webmsaters to post links to your site on the pages of their own site? The answer is, you have to drive customers to your site. Another problem is that even the best content in the world will struggle to gain organic links because Webmasters won’t offer something for nothing. You need to be able to provide some benefit, apart from quality information, to persuade Webmasters of popular sites to link to you.

Article Directories – Effective?

This is where article directories come in. Article directories are large directories filled with articles written by people looking to promote products, gain links for their site, and generally promote themselves and their services. Every article is allowed an About The Author section at the foot of the article (just like this article has) that can contain one or two links to a website. Some directories allow the use of HTML hyperlinks and in terms of SEO it is vital that you choose these sites to assist with linking. Don’t forget that you need to be able to add keywords to your anchor text in order to help promote your site with search engines.

The Importance Of Link Anchor Text And Some Common Mistakes

A common mistake in linking is the poor use of anchor text. Many people mask their URL behind text like “Click Here” or even their domain name. While the latter provides a little more value it is still unlikely to really help with any link-building program. When a search engine sees a valid link that they follow they use the anchor text to determine the subject of that page. They will then include this page in results for searches that are based on or very close to those keywords. Therefore, using anchor text of “Click Here” means you will be increasing your search engine visibility for anyone searching for the term “Click Here”. On Google the term “Click Here” currently 391 million results. Even if you genuinely wanted to compete in this area you would have no chance.

Using your domain name as anchor text poses similar problems. It is helpful with brand recognition and also ensures that should a surfer explicitly search for the name of your service they will be shown your site first. But how many people do you think find your site by searching for your domain name? The answer, unfortunately, is very few indeed. Always use keywords as your anchor text and make sure that this keyword is included on the page of your site that the link points to.

Using an irrelevant but popular keyword may seem like a good idea but it is a very dangerous game. Adult and online business keywords are among the most popular but when conducting any link building you MUST use keywords in anchor text that directly relate to that page of your site. I might notice that the term “blue widget” (a surprisingly popular choice of keyword for these purposes) receives a lot of searches and use that as the anchor text to point to this article. If I hadn’t included the search term above then Google and other engines would give the link no weight at best. At worst, and if I were to do this regularly, they would flag me, my page, my site, and my IP address as spam. A much better choice of keyword, and therefore anchor text for this article would be “link building”.

Ideal Article Length For Submitting To Directories

Articles submitted to directories can range in length from blog post sized 200 word articles to much more substantial articles of 1,000 to 2,000 words. Anything larger is unlikely to attract any substantial attention but these longer articles less than 2000 words in length are good ammunition for e-zines and electronic newsletters. Even these can gain good links if each issue is archived. They will also usually gain a very good amount of direct traffic.

Choosing Beneficial Article Directories For Your Article Submission

So, the article directories you choose should allow the use of anchor text. They should also offer either a high PageRank or a lot of traffic. PageRank can be viewed using the Google toolbar and anything below PageRank 3 is virtually useless unless the site receives a lot of traffic or is brand new and looks set to become popular in the near future. Alexa is a very good site to help determine the amount of incoming traffic that a site receives. Use as many directories as you can possibly find and submit your article to each one. Try to alter the About The Author section for each directory that you submit to.

Why You Should Consider Altering The Text Around Your Link

Google quickly recognizes that a lot of your links are from identical pages. You will still receive the benefit of your link building and you don’t get penalized for this but you won’t receive as much weight as you can. When you use the Google search engine you will usually notice that when you come to the end of the list you receive notification that a certain amount of results that are very similar to those you have already seen have been excluded from the results. Google does something very similar when compiling the list of inbound links to your site. By changing the text that is found around your link when you submit to each directory you will increase your link popularity.

Conclusion, Summary, And General Notes

There are hundreds of article directories and while you should post to all the ones that offer anchor text and have either a high PageRank or a lot of traffic you shouldn’t bog yourself down too much. Certainly include niche sites because these give you a targeted section of readers. There are also some major general directories that cater to all tastes and are certainly worth adding to your article directory database.

Links are said to be the currency of the Internet and are certainly worth investing some time and/or money into. They will help to boost your search engine rankings and will usually drive direct traffic to your site. By building a database of directories you can ensure that your articles and therefore your sites receive the kind of exposure they rightly deserve.

About The Author

WebWiseWords offers unique link building packages that include article writing and submission. Packages range from basic one off submission to the pro+ package that includes four submissions per month to over 70 directories. Because WebWiseWords is a Platinum or Expert copywriter with many of these directories your article receives even more exposure.

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