Eight Link Popularity Methods Ranked for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
The name of the game in the new year is White Hat SEO. Search engines are too smart for
quick-fix, questionable methods any longer. Building a quality link network for your web
site is one of the most important aspects to web site promotion, whether it's for search
engine optimization, affiliate programs, lead generation, or otherwise.
Surprisingly, some people are still involved in methods that have been proven useless
and even harmful for several years. One method that seems to stand the test of time is a
link exchange: a simple, yet effective, way to increase your web site's link popularity.
This is by far the most common method of acquiring incoming links.
The effectiveness of link exchanges has been discussed ad nauseam by the SEO community
over the past few years. The major Google update dubbed "Florida" showed clearly that many
link exchanges were starting to carry less weight than they had previously carried. Doing
hundreds of link exchanges with casino, pharmaceutical, and loan consolidation sites, no
longer produced top rankings on Google. Yahoo! has followed suit to some degree; however,
MSN is still where Google and Yahoo! were several years ago.
Search engine comparisons aside, many people wonder if link exchanges are worth doing
anymore. Are there more effective methods of obtaining quality incoming links? The truth
is that it totally depends on your competition.
If the norm for obtaining backlinks in one market is to participate in forum discussion
with linked signatures, and to swap links with unrelated sites, then simply doing a higher
quantity of such basic tasks would put your site at the top of the rankings. If your site
is in the field of search engine optimization, then more advanced methods of link
development should be done. Such methods might include writing articles; getting paid
directory listings at Yahoo!, bCentral, and Business.com; or investing in professional
press release distribution.
It all depends on what your competitors are doing. Ignoring the quantity of SEO methods
and focusing on the quality, a good ranking system for backlink acquisition methods is as
follows, with number 8 being the poorest and number 1 being the best:
8. "Sign-up And Get 1000+ Links in 5 Minutes!"
Link opportunities of this nature are pure sp@m. In most cases, you will see a small
form at the bottom of a links page, with a text field for your web site URL and one for
your email address. Giving your email out to legit businesses is risky enough, but can you
imagine how much junk mail you will receive if you start signing up to these kinds
"opportunities"? This method is a complete waste of time.
7. Three-Way Linking:
If "Site A" refers to your web site, you may get link emails out of the blue offering a
partnership whereby your site (Site A) links to the emailer's site "B", while his other
site "C" links back to your Site A. This is one of the most abused linking schemes around
today simply because Site C, the second of the mysterious stranger's sites, is usually
nothing more than a farm of outbound links. Sure, some link popularity work has been done
to obtain a decent PageRank value, but the value this site carries as an outbound link to
yours is minimal at best.