Once you have got your website exactly how you want it, and you’ve optimized all of your content and pages for the search engines, the only thing you still need to do to get that website noticed by more than just your friends and family is to start building those all important backlinks to the site. If the world wide web is one giant popularity contest then you need to make sure that you are getting more votes than your nearest rivals. And the best way to get votes is through links. Unfortunately these days you need to do it very carefully. Google knows all the tricks that people have been employing over the last few years and you can’t get away with simply relying on article spinning or link farms anymore – particularly in the wake of their Panda algorithm change. So with that in mind, here are some rock solid and ever-present essentials to good back link building:
(1) Make Sure All Content is Top Quality: This means both the content of your site and the content of the site and posts that you are linking from. It is incredible just how many people put all their effort into SEO and design but then forget to make the site worth reading. Don’t worry about keywords and optimization until there is something worth visiting. Not only will people be more likely to come back to the site, and link to the site, but the site will also do well under the new Panda rules on quality.
(2) Research your Competitors Backlinks: When you start out trying to plan your own backlinks a good place to start is with the websites of your competitors. Find out where they have built their links from – the likelihood is that anyone who has a website linking to them will be in the right niche to link to your site too and will be willing to accept a link from you. To ensure they will, just make sure that your site is even better than the site of your competitors.
(3) Quality Links Only: Sites with poor quality links from link farms and scraper sites have all been spanked by Google lately. Make sure your site doesn’t have any links to it from poor neighborhoods. Embrace the quality over quantity motto and go for high value sites only. Also, where possible try and get links from sites that don’t have too many other outbound links to dilute the link juice.
(4) Get Guest Posting: Bearing in mind everything above, make a habit of guest posting regularly. Guest Posts are by far the most effective way to build top quality links and they have the added advantage of making you a respected authority on your niche and bringing a new audience to your blog. Try and post on blogs of high value related to the same topic as yours. A link in both the body text and the author bio will be good for your site.
(5) Diversify the Anchor Texts: If you are going to be building a bulk load of links then you need to ensure that the anchor text and keywords varies regularly. Aim for roughly 70 per cent at your target anchor text and then another 30 per cent to secondary anchors, including the name of the site and the odd nonsense anchor such as “click here”.
(6) Take It Easy: In a nutshell, build your links slowly. Doing this will avoid the mighty Google getting suspicious that you are trying to game the system. Ten links a day is probably about right, though many experts say you can go as high as twenty.
(7) Vary Those Links: Don’t just go for guest posts or homepage links. Instead, aim for a mix of all different kinds of links, including directories, Web 2.0, bookmarks, comments and wikis.
Esther is a small business blogger and writer . She covers everything from personal finance to business loans and from website design and optimization to how to set up an umbrella company.