Top Sites Have the Best Links

Link Building is an Important Aspect of Organic SEO

The links that point toward your website from other online resources are the most important factor for scoring well at competitive search terms. According to recent research and opinion collected from top SEO industry pros, three of the top five most critical ranking factors have to do with the construction of a websites inbound link inventory.

You can no longer ignore a link building strategy if you want to compete online!

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Helping Your Site Fight Link Spam

Fight Link Spam

We have recently encountered several client sites that have fallen victim to hackers and link spammers. The hackers gain access to the site, and drop links into key pages that point back to drug, adult, gambling and pirated software web site. The links are inserted in a way that make them impossible to see them when looking at the site, but the search engines see them just fine. This is sometimes referred to as “Spamdexing.”

The motivation for the hackers is to gain better search engine position for key search terms that relate to their chosen enterprise. If the hacker is successful this will reduce your sites ability to perform in the search engines, and may even get your site removed completely.

Cost? FREE!

Netrafic is implementing a monitoring system that silently watches for these types of links. If a hacker gains access to your site and plants links that could negatively impact your web marketing effort we will immediately be notified and manually check your site. If there is an actual problem we will contact you. This service is being added at no charge to clients that are participating in the the Link Building Strategy service.

If you have question or concerns please feel free to contact us.

Read More: Search Spammers Hacking More Websites

Links Are Here to Stay!

If you are still sitting on the fence, waiting to employ a link development strategy for your website, I have some good news, and some bad news.

First, the Bad News: If your website is in a competitive search market you can no longer expect top organic results without having a link building strategy — Period.  Even sites that are well seasoned are starting to see their rankings drop in the search results if their link inventory is weak.

The Good News: It is not too late to implement a link building strategy for your website.  The positive effects of linking (on your search engine results) are rapidly visible.  Seasoned sites can see their positioning for competitive search terms rise in less then 90 days!

The Basics

  • What Are Links?  Links are the “action elements” that you click on to navigate between web pages or websites.  They can be text or graphics.  There’s a decided emphasis on text links for the purpose of Search Engine Optimization.
  • Where Do Links Come From?  The primary sources for links leading back to your web site are: other websites, Internet directories, articles and press releases, blogs, social networks, and advertising venues.
  • Why Are Links Important?  The Search Engines view links in terms of “popularity” on the Internet.  If other sources on the net think your site is popular, then the Search Engines have more confidence that your website is a trusted source.
  • So More Links Are Better?  Not necessarily, the links must come from sources that the Search Engines already trust.  Think of links back to your site as testimonies to your website’s character.  A bunch of junk links from a foreign country or useless websites can actually have a negative effect on your site’s ability to rise and perform in search.
  • I’m Confused.  How Many Links Do I Need?  This is a common misunderstanding, so you are not alone.  Link development is an ongoing process that needs attention for the life of your site.  I like to think of “inbound links” as nutrition for your site.  Just like you can not eat a whole years worth of food in one sitting, you can not get linking finished in one swoop.  A link a day helps keep the competition at bay!

For your website to perform effectively in natural search, for it to receive front page listings, you need to address these top three aspects of SEO:

First, you need to start with a website that is designed to be Search Engine friendly, so that the search spiders can crawl it. 

Second, you need to have the on-site content aligned with your message, and groomed for the key words and phrases that you are targeting. 

Third, you need to build a robust link inventory from reliable and relevant sources. 

The team at RightNow Communications can help you develop a top performing site.  Contact us for an assessment of your online presence today.

What can you do to help the LINKING PROGRAM?

 I always get asked, “what can we do to help the linking program?” There are several things that we can work together on to help the link portion of your SEO program.

Pass along Link Requests – These are the emails you get in your inbox every day that ask you to exchange links or join a linking program.  Often these are useless form letters from sites that you don’t want to be associated with, however, there will be an occasional request from a good resource.  You don’t have the time to examine these emails – send them to me!  I can spot a good prospect in a second.

Write me a LIST of Friendly Websites – A friendly website is one that you have a contact or relationship with.  A good example is your hosting company – your annual hosting fee should be worth a link!  Business associates, friends, family, professional associations (you pay dues to) and your web development partners can all be great sources for links.  Make a list of URLs and names, send it to me, and I will look at the contact for you.  Most exchanges will end up benefiting your contact also.

We should add Link Page to your site – On the surface this may seem like a surefire way to attract more spam to your inbox.  Most sites we work with have assigned a unique email address for the linking program already – let the spam come to me!  I will sort through the dirt to find the inevitable link diamonds that will arrive from time to time.  It helps to have a link exchange area on your site set up.  Many of you already do, for those that do not, contact me first please.

Lets create a reason for people to link to your site – This can be the most powerful link development tool in our arsenal.  Are you thinking of a way to expand your site, or do you have additional development plans?  Let us know before you start so we can integrate a “Link Attraction” element into your plan.  We can brainstorm a unique angle that will help attract links and traffic.  Not developing in the near future?  We can still add a resource to your existing site.

Send me your Press Releases – Articles, and Content – Pass along information (to me) about your organization that you are sending out on a regular basis.  Anything from client Thank You letters to brochure copy can be utilized to create a unique mini-article that I send out with embedded links back to your site.  A link back from a good article can be more powerful that a link from a web site.

Send me your video – Got any video of your product, service, sales copy, or relevant interviews?  The video revolution is in full swing on the internet.  We are getting great results with Video Links on top video search portals like Youtube, Jumpcut, and Break.  Don’t have video?  No problem, you can still utilize these channels by producing a collage of still images with a voice-over to create a video-type production.  Call me if you just want to talk about the idea of using a video.  I would be happy to help.

Best Regards, Link-A-Billy Dave

Links and Feeds and Blogs – Oh My!

Successful (SEO) Search Engine Optimization includes dozens of aspects to help your web page perform at full potential in the natural (non-paid) Search Engine Results.

As we have discussed there are two main aspects to proper site optimization.

1. On-Page factors: The things you can directly control on your website by correctly placing content, layout features, meta data, navigation, and the inclusion of search engine friendly elements.

2. Off-Page factors: The are considerations that take place partially or completely away from your website. The main consideration is linking, but also include hosting, age, history, and competition factors.

These two factors are the primary considerations the search engines use when determining your sites placement in the natural search results. The weight each factor caries is generally determined by the competition for a given search term. Search terms that are not particularly competitive seem to rely more on the On-Page Factors to deliver results. Markets that are highly contested increase the importance of Off-Page Factors. In addition, the various search engines have their own formula to deliver results. If a weight had to be assigned to each factor, I would place it in the range of 60%-40% in favor of the On-Page Factors. Sixty percent is still a failing grade!

The Off-Page Factors include a multitude of tools to accomplish the primary task of developing links that point back toward your web site. Some of the most successful tools you can include are RSS Feeds and a Blog.

Lets define what these terms mean first.

RSS Feed: RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. Syndication is a fancy description for distribution or broadcast. By including any content in an RSS distribution format (called a feed) you can automatically broadcast your information to anyone that wants to receive it. They do not have to come to your web site to see what is new, because your web site automatically send out the information!

Blog: A simple software application that allows a user with little or no computer experience to write content and automatically post it to the internet. Blogs are still thought of (incorrectly) as just a place to put an online diary. In fact, the modern blog can be integrated into the web site design, and many times the web visitor never even knows they are looking at a “blog.” It’s just another web page!

The Connection – Putting it all together.

One of the main linking tactics we use in the RighNow Communications (RNC) linking program is to develop generic content around the search engine phrase we want your web page to score high for in the search results. The links back to your site are embedded into the article or information release. Then, the content is listed on the web in an RSS broadcast directory. When the “feed” is picked up by another web site, your links ride along for free. Well placed content can create hundreds of links back to your site in the process. Better yet, potential customers can follow the trail, right to your sites front door!

Another recommendation from RNC is to develop a business blog on your site. Think of a blog as your own private online newspaper advertising. The blog will allow you to add updated information to your website on the fly, building your sites content quickly. In addition, blogging software has a built-in RSS feature that will allow visitors to add your “information broadcasts” to their website or RSS Inbox with a single click! The most attractive part of creating a blog is that the most popular blog software is … FREE! The look of the blog can be customized easily to match the look or your website.

All of the strategies discussed here are considered “search engine friendly” and are quickly becoming internet marketing standards. They combine a complete “Factor” strategy by combining content with linking to form a total package.

Please feel free to contact Dave or Chris to find out how to apply these powerful techniques to you site today.

In Link We Trust

Trust: Assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something b: one in which confidence is placed.

There are a handful of major factors that the search engines look at when deciding which sites to include in their results. One of the biggest factors in the website vs. search engine relationship in the trust factor. Yes trust.

Google is under no obligation to include any website in its search process. They are even more cautious about the sites that get listed near the top of the results. They want to deliver sites that are relevant to the person that plugged the search phrase into their browser.

How can Google tell if you are trustworthy? They use the very same method that creditors or the police use – your permanent record. The search engines have a profile of your sites history. How old it is, where your hosts server resides, who owns it, the amount and type of content, and the percentage of your site’s links that are reciprocated. They know how many countries are linking to your site. They even know if you have 10 domains all pointing to the same content.

Most importantly they know your link history. The search engines know how to count your links. They do it all day, every day. What they have perfected is determining which of the links they have already counted can be trusted. If your site only has inbound links from .biz domains or free directories, that’s not a very trustworthy link profile. It would be preferable to have just a handful links from relevant sites and some select sources like major directories, useful content releases, a few .edu and .org sites, and other countries. Why? That’s a much more trustworthy link profile. If your site is linked to by a variety of different sites that have a high trust factor, your trust profile will go up, and so will your results.

Some things to consider when linking:

Don’t ever link to sites that include and/or link to content that is questionable. This includes gambling, media piratacy, adult content, or sites that are pure link farms.

Don’t include your site in link pools, link co-ops, or link free for all.

Don’t use any automated link marketing software.

Don’t Link all of your sites together.

Don’t bulk purchase links.

Never purchase links for, or sell links from your site just for the sake of link value. This does not include “pay for inclusion” directories like Yahoo or advertising that naturally links back to your site.

You need to protect your link history as cautiously as your credit information. Just like identity theft can be devastating to your FICO score, a poor website identity profile can kill your SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages.) Ultimately, you are responsible for every action on your sites behalf.