There are two important reasons why you must build incoming links. Firstly, search engines find websites by crawling through links on websites that they have already indexed. So when there’s a link to your website from another website, chances are
search engines will find your website sooner or later.
Secondly, search engines look at how many incoming links you have and with the text used to link to you. If you are linked with the text “digital marketing”, you will mostly get good rankings for that keyword. The search engines see it as reputation that your website has. The more links you get to your website, the more reputation the search engine gives. You are most likely to rank better than websites with lesser incoming links.
First things first!
Before you go out and start asking webmasters for links to your website – let’s consider some important things that you must have.
Links page(s) : The unwritten rule of getting incoming links to your site is for you to have a link page(s) yourself. That is how reciprocal links work. Nobody ever talks about this, perhaps because they assume that it’s obvious or self-explanatory. You can’t exchange links if you don’t have your own link page. Who would want to link to you? So set up your link page.
About setting up a link page
When you are setting a link page, what you DON’T want to do is to name it link.htm or anything that has the word ‘link’ in it. It has been a rumor that search engines are being cautious in identifying incoming links that are on pages like link.htm or
linkpages.htm or anything like. Instead of naming your links page as such, maybe you can use partner-sites.htm or resources.htm or simply sites.htm. That would be something better, right?
Here’s another thing about setting up your link page. You can do it manually or you can install a script to manage it.
Maintaining your links manually with HTML is rather tiring. Installing a script would be easier. Installing a script would actually mean a link directory. You can surf around and search for any script that you think would be suitable. Some are even created specifically for building link exchange. People can come to your website and submit their website details for approval in return for a link to your website. Some are just plain link directory. Go with whichever suits you best.
A win-win linking strategy
Well, they say that you have to look for quality link partners. Maybe there’s some truth to it when you see that Google is giving ‘ranks’ to websites with their PageRank. And they also say that you have to find related websites. When you say related, I
would say that you have to look for websites that are NOT directly related. Why?
Well, if you have a website about Nokia cellphones, do you think that another website about Nokia cellphones is going to link to you? If I am the other website owner – I won’t. Why – because you are a competitor. In that case, where do you look for quality link partners?
Now, here’s my strategy. Earlier I said about NOT directly related. How is that? If you have a website specifically about Nokia cellphones, look for websites about Motorola cellphones, Samsung cellphones or something like that. You can even look
for websites like PDAs, mobile technology, GRPS, SMS, ringtones, or anything like that. Cool eh?
In most cases, when you go with a strategy like that, those websites will never be competitors. You don’t mind linking to them, and they wouldn’t mind linking to you. Since both of you are targeting different keywords, it’s possible that both of you will
succeed at it. It’s a WIN-WIN situation.
Now, here’s another tip for looking for quality link partners. The easiest way to look for quality link partners is through … DIRECTORIES. And when I say easiest – I really mean it. In just a few clicks, you can end up with hundreds of quality websites that you can ask links from. All that you have to do is browse to the related category in that directory. Browse for the SMS, ringtones, GPRS, Java games directories – and before your eyes – hundreds of sites! How easy is that?
Now what directories can you go to? Hundreds of that are available everywhere. Here are some suggestions.
- Yahoo Directory – http://dir.yahoo.com
- Zeal – http://zeal.com
- Joe Ant – http://joeant.com
- Jayde Directory – http://dir.jayde.com
- GoGuides – http://www.goguides.org
- Skaffe – http://www.skaffe.com
- Seven Seek – http://sevenseek.com
- Linkopedia – http://linkopedia.com
- Uncover the Net – http://www.uncoverthenet.com
- Blue Find – http://www.bluefind.com
Those are resources for great websites. You should drill those down for your link partners. Here’s another great place to look for link partners – LINK EXCHANGE DIRECTORIES.
Do you know that there are directories out there that were built specifically for link exchange? When you go to these directories, websites that are listed in there are eagerly waiting for link exchange requests. When you ask them to exchange links, the response rate is very high.
How do you look for link exchange directories? One way is to just search for ‘link directory’ in any search engines, but to get you started here’s my list for you.
All this while we’ve been talking about searching for quality link partners. How do you get people to ask for your links instead? That would be easier, right?
The same way that you looked for those link partners! You need to list yourself into those link directories. Getting a listing from the link exchange directories are normally free of charge, so
why not go there and list your website? The response that I got from Link Market has been overwhelming. Link Exchanged is not bad at all.
Listing your website not only attracts more link partners; you are also getting an incoming link from that directory. For more quality incoming links you can also add your website in the commercial directory that I listed earlier.
Zeal, Linkopedia and SevenSeek all require that you pay a small listing fee. I don’t how good and bad this is. If you think that you can afford it, why not. Yahoo requires an annual payment of $299 as a “review fee” – which means that they will not guarantee a listing if your website is not up to their standards.
Looking for other people’s link pages
This is a common strategy that many have been using. One of the easiest ways to get incoming links is to look for link pages, just like the one you have set up. Just go over to MSN, Yahoo or Google and enter a search like below
[[topic]] add url
You need to change [[topic]] with the topic of your website. For example, you can enter “mug add url” or “thermos add url”. You can also try any variant of these. This way, you’ll find more related websites to get links from.
[[topic]] add url
[[topic]] add link
[[topic]] submit url
[[topic]] submit link
[[topic]] link exchange
[[topic]] link partner
The link pages that you find would normally ask for a link back in return. So make sure that you have your link page ready. It’s the rule of reciprocation.
How to get unreciprocated (one-way) links
Here’s a little something that you can do to get unreciprocated links. A “reciprocal link” would normally mean that you get an incoming link if you link to them. It has been the talk of town that search engines prefer incoming links that is not reciprocated from your website. People may not have thought of this much, but it is an effective way to get incoming links without returning one.
How? Well, actually you still have to return a link. But if you have more than one website, you can link to them from a different website. Let’s say that you have a website on key chains and another website on car locks.
Let’s say that you happen to find a website that you would like to get incoming link from. If you want to get incoming links to your key chain website, simply tell them to link to you. And in return, you will link to them from your car lock website.
It’s that simple. The other webmasters will appreciate it too because they too are getting a one-way link.
Buying text links
Here’s something else to consider: If you have the funds to this, you may want to consider buying text links. Before you even start, be equipped with the the key metrics. You’ll need this to see the Domain Authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA) for the websites that you buying text links from. One strategy that you can use in buying text links is to get a very high PR link, and only maintain that for one month. The idea is to get a link from high DA website so that search engines come crawling more quickly.
This is especially true in the case of Google They crawl websites with high DA almost every day. So if you have a link from a high DA website, your websites can get into Google within days. This saves a lot of time compared to the months that you have to wait before you get indexed.
Another strategy that you can apply is to get as many incoming links as possible, no matter what DA they have, and maintain them as long as you can afford. This strategy works well, especially on MSN and Yahoo.
Google sees how many websites are linking to you, taking into consideration what those websites’ DA are. In some cases, a website with only 5 incoming links, all from websites with PR7 and above, may perform better from a website with 100 incoming links, all from DA 0 websites.
As of now, I don’t think that MSN and Yahoo apply any website reputation system like Google’s Pagerank does. Unlike Google, for Yahoo and MSN the more incoming links that you have the better.
If you spend $100 per month on incoming links but manage to get $200 or above per month, it’s well worth the investment.
Here are some places where you can buy incoming links