Where do links come in?
We travel around the Internet by following links. Using complex algorithms, search engines travel from page to page with links as their guide. They also act as a handy road map demonstrating popularity, spam, trustworthiness, and authority.
Link building has been an important part of every SEO strategy since the 90s. An inbound link is essentially a positive vote for your website. Our goal is to build as many "trusted" votes as possible.
How does Trust factor in?
This is where things get a little trickier. We don't just want any kind of link we can get our hands on. We want quality links from reputable sources. A portfolio of quality links is what differentiates an authoritative website from a spammy one. That being said, we should update our link building mission statement – "We want to build high quality inbound links from as many reputable websites as possible."
The concept of Trust brings us to Authority, Global Popularity, Trust Profiling, or any one of the other fancy titles we've created to cover this subject. The bottom line – the more trusted sites that link to you, the more reputable you look. And if you're reputable, you hold authority in your field. That's what we mean by creating an authoritative website or increasing Page Authority.
There a wide range of links we can look to build. There are organic, reciprocal links, resource links, forum signature links, blog comments, directory linking, social bookmarking, social linking, and so many more types that we can't list them all. We want to focus on organic links.
Just as the name suggests, organic links are links that happen naturally. The Internet is constantly expanding and sites will naturally link to one another. Out of all the various types of links, organic links are by far the most valuable. In fact, they are so valuable; countless SEO companies use complex link building strategies just to replicate the effect organic links have on a website. Unfortunately, nothing beats the real thing. That makes things harder for us.
Do NOT sell links or buy Paid Links in an attempt to gain organic links.
Regardless of what any consultant, web expert, or website tells you, do not join Paid Link schemes. The Google link building guidelines are very clear about what's acceptable when it comes to building links. Don't stray too far from their path because the Google ban hammer comes without mercy or warning.
Building Organic Links
Letting things happen naturally is great but sometimes we need to give the process a little push. This is where you get to be creative with your SEO. A good place to start is to follow this great article by SEO Book – 101 Ways to Build Link Popularity.
A good Internal Link Building structure can also do wonders for a website. Internal Links are hyperlinks connecting a page on a website to another page on the same website. They're best used when linking to a source of reference of a related article. To Google, internal links act as a method of passing PageRank internally and showing Google that the linking page is related. For more on Internet Link Building, visit out guide on "How To Setup Great Internal Link Building".
For more link building techniques, follow our SEO Optimization blog as we review the latest tips to gaining organic links.
More Link Building Options
There are plenty of other ways to build links other than targeting organic links. Sometimes it pays off to pick up some pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, hire a link builder to submit your site into directories, or engage your fans through Social Media. If you're searching for the next best free option to building links, consider Social Media Marketing.Back to Top