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Tips on Building Link Popularity

Last issue we talked about how you can raise your search engine rankings through search engine submission and targeted keywords. This edition, we take a look at link popularity.

What is link popularity anyway?

Link popularity refers to the number of web sites and directories that link to your web site. It is an important ranking criterion for most search engines, most notably Google, and is a critical part of any site marketing strategy.


Links to your site from related sites not only increase your search engine ranking but also boost traffic to your site. And isn't this really the aim of any web-based marketing strategy?

Get Popular -Tips and Tricks

Create Content

Give people a good reason to link to you by providing information that is truly beneficial to them.

Add a content-rich section to your site. Become an authority in your area of expertise. Include an archive of your e-newsletters, useful tips and strategies, complementary services, and a links page.

Write industry-related content for other sites. Visitors will see you (and your site or business) as experts in the field thereby increasing your credibility and exposure.

Exchange Links
Trading links with complementary web sites is one of the most effective ways to raise your link popularity. To exchange links, simply e-mail the webmaster of a given web site and ask them to place a link to your site on their web site. Do the same for them. Link exchanges are also a great way to build relationships and attract more visitors to your site.

Personally e-mail the webmasters of sites that are complementary, but not competitive with your own. Explain to them how their site will be enhanced by linking to you and identify the exact page you would like your link placed.

Place your link exchange partners' link on your site before you suggest an exchange.

B2B? Exchange links with suppliers and resellers.

Hang out with the cool kids. Approach top-ranked sites for exchanges. Exchanges with popular sites are more valuable than lower ranked sites.

Sign Up & Submit
Linking from web sites is only part of the puzzle. Don't forget the rest of the Internet. Get your name onto listservs, bulletin boards, chat rooms and usergroups.

Contribute to related usergroups and online discussion forums and increase your credibility and exposure. Make sure your e-mail signature includes a link to your web site.

Register your site in industry-specific directories such as health, financial, travel, golf and other sub-directories that relate to your products and services.

Submit to all national, regional and state web site "yellow page" directories individually.

Sign up for e-zines and e-mail newsletters relating to your industry. This adds to your link popularity and provides you with useful industry-related information.

What Not to Do
"There's no such thing as a free lunch." And, "If it looks too good to be true, it probably is." These hackneyed clichés hold true when it comes to easy routes to increasing link popularity. Most of the widely available shortcuts will either not work or get you kicked off search engines.

Avoid link farms. Link farms link to other sites for the sole purpose of increasing their link popularity by linking to totally unrelated sites. For example, if you sign up for a service that will generate 100 inbound links in exchange for 100 outbound links on your site, you are growing a link farm. This practice is also called link stuffing. Search engines disregard these sites and may even boot you out for participating.

Do not link to non-related sites. All links are not created equally. Link to sites that offer genuinely useful and related content of value to your customers. These links will generate traffic and increase your link popularity.

Avoid link generators that send out automated e-mails to webmasters asking them to trade links. Personal e-mails to webmasters are much more effective.


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