Looks like I’m back with another post after a long absence. Such is the nature of this game. The last one was about the Bidvertiser Blues, where I lost my account with them thanks to a spammer clicking my ads on a certain site. Happily, I got it back when I could prove it wasn’t me clicking my own ads and now, hopefully that spammer has been banned by their host too – as I said, people who live in glass houses should not throw stones!
Moving on with what this post is going to cover, which is that of how to get legitimate backlinks to your website or blog.
With the current trend in buying links, using link farms, or using software to generate hundreds if not thousands of spammy links via social bookmarking sites and the like, it seems people are forgetting that these methods are quick-fix and are unlikely to give lasting results.
Why is that? Well, several reasons.
1. Buying links is frowned upon big time by Google, who will slap any site it catches selling the links. That means the high PR links you have paid for will at some point become worthless as the site selling them loses its PR. You might think you’ve got a great deal for your money, but site owners who sell links eventually get greedy and fall under Google’s radar.
2. Using link farms is also a dangerous pursuit as Google sees this as trying to game its system. You might start off with tons of authority links and see your sites rise swiftly in the SERPs. That is until the day Google uncovers the link farm and wipes it out – all your links become worthless and down you go again. Worse is if Google then tracks those links back to your sites – by association, your sites could be considered a part of that link farm and all your hard work will go down the drain!
3. Using software to generate links is nothing more than spam tactics and Google is very much on the case of spammers. Again, it is seen as trying to game their system and will not be tolerated for long. You’ll eventually get caught and if those links point to your main sites, you could get a penalty or worse, de-indexed.
So where does that leave site owners who want to compete for the top places in the SERPs? How do you get enough legitimate authority backlinks so you can be placed high enough to get some of that coveted organic search traffic that will make money for you?
Traditional methods such as article marketing are still there and still produce good links for your sites. Write some good keyword rich articles on your niche and submit them to the likes of Ezine Articles, GoArticles etc. Just make sure your submission to Ezine Articles is original as they will not accept duplicate content! Other article directories are not so strict, so you’ll have to gauge that one for yourself. The more articles you have out there on more different sites each with a keyword anchored link in your resource box, the more legitimate and good authority inbound links you create for yourself.
If you own several sites in the same niche, you can link them to each other in such a way that they all get a one way keyword anchored link from each other without linking back.
You can still comment in do-follow blogs although the link juice from comments is very low.
You can also join and post in many forums related to your niche, with a keyword anchord link in your signature. This is a good way of getting mediocre links that still give your site keyword authority, which is what you want.
You can create Squidoo lenses and Hub Pages and link to your sites from them. You need to make each page or lens legitimate with lots of good original and relevant content to give your links more weight. Hub pages need posting to fairly often to get your score above 70 so that your links are do-followed. This is just a way of preventing spammers from misusing the system, so use it to your advantage and write quailty hubs.
A similar but quite new place to have a look at is LookUpPage. From what I can see there are several options, but the one that interested me was the free one (as it would!). You can set up a simple personal web page here, but the part that really grabbed my attention was that you can enter a keyword anchored link to your website without having to write a lot of content. That means here is another place to increase your online presence with your own look up page that doesn’t have to take you a lot of work to maintain and that will provide an extra useful link.
Contributing to Yahoo answers also gives you backlinks as long as you don’t abuse it. These backlinks are no follow, but I have seen them showing up in Google Webmaster tools as links, so they can be counted.
Submit your sites to as many link directories as you can. Again these are low quality links, but they do add up. Go for those directories that don’t require a reciprocal link, as your link will be worth more.
When you write your website articles and blog posts, make sure you include a keyword anchored link near the beginning of the first paragraph, so that if a scraper steals your article and posts it on their own site, you stand a good chance they won’t remove it and you get a free link from them.
Other than that, you can try directly contacting owners of other websites and blogs and asking them for a link exchange. That usually only works if they are going to get something out of the exchange, so don’t even think about asking the owner of a PR6 site for a link if you can only reciprocate with a PR1.
Finally, there are the social bookmarking sites like del.icio.us, stumbleupon, etc. Every time you bookmark a site you get a link for each tag, so it makes sense to use plenty of tags when you bookmark. These links are low value, but build up over time.
Also, make use of sites like digg, sphinn and bloggingzoom to bookmark your blog posts – especially the last one will give you some authority for your keywords as long as you use it properly, ie wirting a min 350 character summary that includes your keywords and then getting it voted for at lest 15 times to get it onto page one and more juice for your link.
All of these methods are slow, but natural ways of obtaining links. As long as your site is legit and contains plenty of quality, relevant subject matter in the way of written content, and you have obtained sufficient natural links, then Google will index you and give you SERPs authority.
Of course the best way of getting quality inbound links is the one that you cannot do yourself. That is for another website or blog owner to view your site as such a good authority on its main subject that they will link to you all by themselves without you asking. That is rare, but very nice when it happens.
Well, I hope that gives you some ideas on how to obtain legitimate links to your sites in order to make them grow naturally. As I said it’s a slow process, but a natural one that will stand you in good stead in the long term, which is what you want. If you want to go fast and furious, you can, but be prepared to take a hit along the way as any type of method that games the search engines system is seen as spamming and will not be long lived.
Make money fast, lose your sites fast and start all over again, as spammers do, or take it slow and steady and win the race slowly but surely and have it figured out how to make money online for years to come.