There are many reasons to build links to your website, and sometimes, it is hard to determine if one link is better than another, or if it is worth anything at all. For example, a dofollow link is better than a nofollow for some purposes, but not for others. And a redirected link may hold no value for SEO, but may still prove valuable. Here are the types of links that you can build to your website, and why you should take advantage of a mixture of each.
Traffic Generating Links
Traffic generating links are links that do not necessarily help in terms of raising your rankings for a particular keyword or building up your PageRank. What these links do is expose your website on higher traffic pages in hopes that the traffic from the site you are linked on will get you referral visits. Traffic generating links can be in the form of text links, banner ads, forum posts, blog comments, social mentions, popular directories, and more.
Two free tools to determine the traffic a site gets and what demographics visit the site which will help you decide whether it would be a valuable traffic generating link are Compete and Google AdPlanner.
Compete will allow you to compare up to fives sites (when you register for a free account) and see their estimated traffic, percentage of change (to see if a site is becoming more or less popular), top keywords leading to the site, top keywords used on the site, and top referral sites. This is great information to use if you are looking to build traffic links via banner ads, blog commenting, and guest blogging.
Google AdPlanner shares traffic statistics (unique visitors, page views, average time on site), demographics information (gender, education level, income level, age), and related information (audience interest, related sites visited, and keywords searched for) about individual sites. You can also search for sites based on audience by specifying the geography, language, demographic, and interest level to find sites that are visited by people who would be most likely to click on your link. Google AdPlanner will also let you know if a website accepts advertising and links to the advertising page for that website.
Traffic generating links can be a mixture of free and paid links, dofollow and nofollow links. The key in finding traffic generating links is finding sites that get a good amount of visitors that are interested in what your website has to offer.
SERP Elevating Links
To boost your search result positioning for particular keywords, the key is getting dofollow links on relevant pages using your keyword phrase as anchor text. So if you want to rank highly for blogging tips, you will want your links to be using those keywords.
There are many ways to get good SERP elevating links including blog commenting on relevant dofollow blogs (preferably with the KeywordLuv plugin), guest blog posting with your anchor text link in your author bio or content, forum signatures, article marketing, directory submissions, and organic links from relevant pages.
PageRank Boosting Links
While the debate ensues about how important PageRank is for your site and whether Google will continue updaing rankings, until the day comes when Google removes PageRank from their toolbar, people are going to care about their ranking in the 1 – 10 system.
PageRank is built by getting dofollow links from relevant pages with high PageRank. The higher the PR of the page your link is on, the more it will count towards boosting your PageRank. This Google PageRank calculation chart shows how many estimated links it takes to get your site to move up in PageRank.
So what tool will help you find some pages with high PageRank? Why not try SEO Quake for Firefox? It has a handy feature that will let you sort your search results for a particular word by PageRank.
Once you find relevant pages with high PageRank, you can start building PageRank boosting links to your site via blog comments, link requests, directory submissions, etc.
Reputation Building Links
Are you looking toward using SEO for reputation management? Then you will want to focus on reputation building links – links that are anchored with your name or company name as the anchor. The links are built not just to your main website, but also to your social profiles, blogs, and other affiliations, as the point is to bring positive information about you up in the search results.
Reputation links can be built in a multitude of ways. It goes beyond just creating social profiles – you have to build links to those social profiles. Ways to do this include adding it to your main website, interlinking one social profile with another, blog commeting using your name as anchor text and social profiles as the website URL, adding your social profiles to relevant directories (like Twellow, the Twitter directory), including your profiles in forum signatures, and so on.
Backlinks for Your Backlinks
Each of your backlinks to your websites or social profiles is strengthened by the incoming links to the page your link is placed upon. Therefore, it only makes sense to create some backlinks for the pages you get links.
One easy way to do this is to socially bookmark pages once you get a link placed upon them – this can also be an effective method of keeping track of the links you are getting if you are not using another system to manage your backlinks. Bookmarking the pages your link gets placed on may also help notifiy search crawlers to come and check out the newly updated page, getting your link noticed and cached quickly.
The Key to Building Links
One of the most important things to keep in mind when building links, for any purposes, is that the process must look natural to Google to avoid being penalized. So be sure to vary your strategies, anchor text, and other methods of link building so that you can get the optimum results without running into any problems.
Your Link Building
Do you vary your link building for different purposes, or aim simply to raise your SERP? Are there other ways you build links that are effective for the specific purposes mentioned above? Please share your thought on Twitter @SEJournal.
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