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Link Building: Create A Chain Reaction!

Apr 8, 2008
No doubt you've heard of word-of-mouth advertising, whereby products or companies get a boost when people talk positively about them. The online equivalent of this kind of advertising is link building. What does it mean? Link building involves getting other websites to link to your site. It is similar to having your friend recommend a good doctor or restaurant; it carries more weight than an address listed in the yellow pages. If a viewer comes to your site through a link from another site, it obviously has more significance than if the person just stumbled across it.

Another particularly good reason for link building is for better search engine listings. In recent times, links have become increasingly important to search engines because they see them as an approval of your site by other websites. What better endorsement can there be than a positive referral! Take the case of your dentist or hairdresser - I bet you chose them primarily because of references from friends and relatives. Same is the case with your website - the more sites that provide links to it, the more popular it is!

How do you go about it? We've listed below some steps that will help you in the task of link building:

o Create a plan - You guessed right! The first step is to set a goal and prepare a plan. How many links do you want? Set a realistic goal for the number of links you want. When you are making the plan, set your target higher than your actual goal - about 4-5 times more. We are saying this because not all sites that you approach will want to trade links. You could get quite a number of refusals.

o Make your site worth their time - Content, content, content! That is the constant mantra you have to repeat to yourself. If your site has no worthwhile content to read, no one will be interested in linking to it. Examples of linkable content include how-to articles, product reviews, tools, tips, FAQs and so on. Make it relevant to what your site is about. For example, if you are an online beauty supply store, write articles on beauty tips, hair care, clothes and accessories. You can bet that you will get links from several websites catering to these needs.

o Look for quality link partners - How would you go about doing this? There are many ways to find link partners, but the easiest way is to use Open Directory and Yahoo. These directories are difficult to get listed in, so finding a potential link partner here will ensure that those are good sites for linking to.

o Organize your findings - Once you have made a list of potential link partners, get organized. Keep track of the full name of the site owner or Webmaster, the email address, the homepage URL, the URL of the page where you think your link belongs and why you think it belongs there and the date of the initial request letter.

o Contact the potential site - Once you have garnered all the necessary information, send an e-mail customized to each site requesting that you trade links. In your request, mention why your link belongs on their site and provide a sample link and description.

o Check for links and follow-up - Link building takes time. Check to see if anyone has linked to your site after a month. Follow up with each site that hasn't linked to you yet.

Link building takes time. But if you keep at it, you are sure to reap the benefits of this simple, easy-to-do advertisement for your business website.
About the Author
Hi, I'm Akhil Shahani, a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed. I have created http://www.smartentrepreneur.net to help you benefit from all I've learned on my journey creating successful companies. Check it out today!
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