As a business with a website you need to promote, the need for good links to your pages may be glaringly obvious. You want visitors and they need roads down which to travel to your pages, and links should present the web user with just such sign-posted roads online. What must also be apparent to you is the need to rank highly on search engine results pages in order to bring visitors and potential customers to your pages. Not ranking highly with Google, Yahoo, MSN and the rest of the big names will dramatically reduce your exposure, and can mean make or break for a lot of businesses. But did you know that good search engine optimization also involves good link building? The connection may not be immediately obvious, but this article we’ll look at four quick tips you should really take into consideration when you plan your link building strategies.
1. Most of the things you do to make a site good for users amount to excellent SEO link building strategies. This is first on our list because it should amount to a guiding principle in all your endeavours with SEO. Search engines send ‘robots’ (sometimes called ’Spiders’) to investigate the internet and all the sites on it. Robots send back information about sites, and search engines apply complex algorithms to that information to decide how high up on their results pages a site deserves to rank. Sounds daunting? Well it isn’t as complicated for the website designer as it may sound. Search engines basically rank sites well that are relevant and popular. In order to be both, you need good quality content and good quality links. When you’re adding content to your page remember that if it appeals to users it will also score you points with search engines. Never use spamming methods, because they’ll encourage the wrath of search engines and users alike. It’s much better to have less, good quality links than to have a plethora of bad ones. Ethical business practise on the web amounts to good search engine optimisation.
2. Don’t try to deceive the search engines. Although many search engine optimization services still advocate the buying of links and other dubious methods of obtaining them, you should be aware that any such activity is very much frowned upon by search engines these days. In keeping with point number one, use good practise and don’t compromise your chances by letting your guard down. Search engines have sophisticated ways of being able to spot bought links. Words such as ‘advertise’ and ‘sponsor’ generally set alarm bells ringing, and you should remember that the search engine has easy access to information about when links were added. Having hundreds of links added over the course of a week and then very few over the next month sends a message that something’s wrong.
3. Learn what the best quality links are and develop linking strategies built around trying to harness their powers. Google and other search engines will generally rank your site higher if you have a lot of authoritative links. What are these? Links from educational or governmental sites are authoritative in that they’re recognised as legitimate links from respected sources. If you can get a good number of .edu. (education) .ac (academic) and .gov (government) sites to link to you then you’ll glow in the eyes of search engines and achieve the high ranking on their pages that you need. Another benefit of thee ‘authoritative’ links is that you don’t have to wait too long for Google to take them into account for your site. Google now have a special time-filter algorithm, which means that most other links won’t benefit your site for 3-6 months. This is one of their measures to combat spamming techniques (see tip 2!). There are ways of getting these links. As a start, try to get a link from local and other libraries. When selecting from several search engine optimisation services ask whether they have experience in link building strategies like this, if you decide it’s important to you.
The three quick tips here really represent the tips of the iceberg when it comes to SEO and strategies for building links. We haven’t touched on the importance of social media and blogs, for example. Ask the professionals you employ for their advice on other ways to get the most out of links and keep our three tips in mind for link building success!
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