you are building links to increase your link popularity, who do you
link to? The question of where to link to increase ranking can be
confusing. Logical thinking is needed to achieve link popularity in
a natural way.
First and foremost, PageRank is part of the algorithm of Google's
ranking in the search engine results. Other search engines use link
popularity in their algorithm to evaluate your website as well. But
PageRank is only one of the 100 plus criteria Google uses to evaluate
your web pages. Use the idea of PageRank as a "tool" to
help make decisions, there's no need to live and die by the results.
Link popularity itself is merely one way to improve your ranking.
You Link To Them?
Think about it. You see a quality website, you see good content. The
site is a "Mom and Pop" website with little ranking. So
what if the Google Toolbar says PageRank 2/10? That 2/10 may one day
be 8/10. More importantly, you are linking to it because it is good
to link to for your visitors - end of story.
There is a general fear of reciprocal linking to websites who inadvertently
link to a "bad neighborhood" with penalties or PageRank
zero, passing on problems to you. Use your common sense. Is this a
website you would want to visit or your visitors would want to visit?
If the answer is no or you can't tell what the subject of the site
is, make a note of it and keep looking. A website full of links with
little content doesn't "make sense" because what benefit
is it to you or your visitors? Of course you are going to link to
your partners in business or maybe the small website that is doing
a bang up job of selling widgets and providing widget information.
Just To Link
If you are going to link, what purpose does it serve? The idea of
acquiring link popularity by linking back and forth to other sites
to boost your popularity artificially is a popular method. But is
it of value to your website? Ask yourself:
you link to this site if link popularity in the search engines didn't
Would your visitor care about this link or find it helpful?
Does the website have good content?
Is this an opportunity for you to publicize your website by being
Will this link cause you to spend a great deal of time worrying about
Is the link "just a link" or do you want a link from any
site whose visitors care about what you have to say
To Seek Out Links That Make Sense
It makes sense to list your website in the search engines and directories.
In fact, one-way linking, such as listing your site in directories,
is a good way to improve your link popularity naturally. Well, you
say to yourself, of course I've done that. Besides the major directories,
what else is out there? You'd be surprised at the amount of good secondary
and specialty directories that drive traffic. Some even specialize
in a topic - maybe your topic. If you have a product to sell, look
at who your competitor is linking to. Search for directories and business
sites on your topic. Look for websites that talk about the widgets
you sell and see if they accept submissions to their directory listings
in the category for widgets. Do they accept original articles, product
reviews, press releases or white papers about widgets? If so, submit
your topical articles and watch your link popularity rise naturally.
Always include your author bio, website link, reprint and copyright
information for your company. With your good content on other websites
as well as archived on your own website, there you have it, links
pointing back to your website.
Like A Search Visitor
You've heard about good navigation, website usability and other ways
to keep your site visitors interested in your site. Who are the search
engines catering to? Webmasters? Search Engine Marketers? Google is
a prime example - they want to create the best experience for their
search engine users. It all ties in together - good content, good
navigation, good usability, validated code, and relevant search engine
results - because it makes sense. If Google as the leader in search
engines is concerned about the visitor, don't you think the other
search engines follow suit?
Work Instead Of Worrying
Focus your time on good content which uses your important keyword
phrases. Optimize your web pages using those keywords. Develop your
website so once your visitors arrive, they will want to stay. The
world wide web uses linking to connect us all. By using hard work
to create a quality website and common sense when linking you can
stop worrying and start succeeding.
is the founder and Search Engine Marketing Consultant for Search Innovation
a Search Engine Promotion company serving small businesses. Besides
running her own company, Daria is an associate of WebMama.com, an Internet
web marketing strategies company. She has specialized in search engine
optimization since 1998, including three years as the Search Engine
Specialist for O'Reilly & Associates, a technical book publishing