Google algorithm updates are currently putting links in the hot spot, but there is good reason to always be thinking about them instead of just sometimes. In the world of SEO, link building is becoming more complex and can’t just be an automated after thought. That is, unless you want to get nailed by the reoccurring Panda and Penguin updates!
Theories about link building can be confusing and it’s hard to keep up with current and outdated strategies. Here’s a quick refresher on 4 common linking topics:
Diversity as a Goal: Automated link submissions are seen as spammy because you can easily create hundreds of the same links. Not only is this not helpful for user experience, but it also makes your link profile look suspicious. Manual link building is encouraged because you can achieve a diverse portfolio of links. But here’s where the “catch” comes in, as Google is cracking down and devaluing or even penalizing links that look unnatural in their eyes.
What’s Your Anchor Text?: Exact match anchor text is also being devalued because it’s not natural to gather a lot of those links. Relying on these types of links can quickly get you penalized for over optimization. Instead, it’s natural and more likely to have partial match keywords as well as a good percentage of anchor text such as: your company name, your site’s URL, and generic words like “home and “click here”. These linking practices are undesirable from an SEO standpoint, but it’s still good nowadays to have a few thrown into the mix.
Don’t Forget About Images: Whether you want to call it hesitation, paranoia or even fear over anchor text, you can integrate the use of linking images. This is a good time to think outside of the box and broaden your SEO assets so that you’re not just counting on text links. Check out this article on Pinterest optimization that is also extremely helpful for optimizing pictures in general.
Deep Links: Here we go again – always linking to your home page might sound like the best and most convenient strategy, but it’s really just a bad habit. As we all know, bad habits are hard to break. Depending on your anchor text, you’ll want that link to point to the specific page of content on your site The goal is to connect your inside pages together and show that the related pages are relevant. This can help improving indexing of new pages and increase click through rates.
Using effective online organic strategies to create links is so important because they are what is pointing back to your website. A diverse and reliable link profile will strengthen your web site’s reputation, while sporadic and shoddy links create a weak foundation. This is why negative SEO is such a scary thought because bad links can literally destroy your visibility in search engine results. Do you have any other thoughts on link building?
Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.