There are two reasons to get links to your Web site: To improve search engine rankings, and generate targeted traffic to your site. Keep both goals in mind when seeking links.
To identify sites already linking to you, go to a search engine and enter link:http://www.example.com (where “example.com” is your URL). Yahoo and MSN will provide more comprehensive results than Google.
Also search for sites that link to your competitors’ sites. How did your competitor get a link? Can you get one, too?
All links are not equal. Search engines give greater weight to those coming from popular and respected pages. One way to determine a site’s importance is by the Google Page Rank. (Page Rank can be viewed on the Google Toolbar. Download it at http://toolbar.google.com/)
Exchanging links with other sites can bring visitors to you, but the consensus of most search engine experts is that reciprocal links are not as important to the search engines as they once were. When seeking reciprocal links, exchange links only with quality sites in your topic area, and do not link to sites unless they have value to the people who visit your site.
Here are some ways to get quality inbound links to your site:
Get links from dozens or even hundreds of sites by posting articles of 250 – 800 words to article directories such as http://www.EzineArticles.com/ and http://www.iSnare.com/. Posting articles to these sites will generate quality links now and in the future as other sites republish your articles.
Articles must be informative, not promotional. A few tips, a how-to on doing something, or a solution to a problem make good articles. Each article you post will contain a resource box. This is a brief paragraph that tells about your business and gives readers a reason to contact you, along with a live link to your site.
Submit your site to directories. Some allow free submissions, others charge. However, it may be worth paying for some directory listings (e.g., Yahoo) to get a respected link. One of the best is free: http://dmoz.org/. Additional directories can be found at http://www.directory-pages.com/
Press releases get wide distribution on the Internet, and provide lots of incoming links. Press releases should be newsworthy. That means that they are not promotional pieces, but they offer timely or useful information.
Press releases can be posted at http://www.PRWeb.com/. Services such as press release writing, editing, distribution, and more can be found at http://idealady.prwebdirect.com/
Posting helpful comments to forums and blogs can generate links and targeted traffic. Seek out blogs and forums that attract the customers you want. When you post, be sure to include a brief signature file with a link to your Web site.
You may find opportunities to get links as you are doing online research or going to sites you visit regularly. Take advantage of them. For the best results, take a gradual, phased approach, adding links on a regular, consistent basis.
As the Idea Lady, Cathy Stucker helps entrepreneurs and professionals attract customers and make themselves famous. Get free marketing tips at http://www.IdeaLady.com/