Off page SEO is much more difficult to do than on page SEO. The reason for this is because you have no control of who links to you. The basics of off page SEO is simple; get as much quality and valuable backlinks as you can from other sites and you will get the best rankings possible. These links must be relevant to your website content and the linking sites must be valuable themselves for these links to carry any real value. Basically what you need to do is take the value of a site, and divide that by the number of links to determine the value of one link.
If you get a link from fbi.gov about how great your website security is, and that FBI site only links out to 10 sites, you can pretty damn well imagine how much value that link has. If you, however, are getting a link from an Indian content farm that has 100,000 outgoing links on its pages, you can imagine how little link juice a link from them will carry. Even worse, you could get banned from the search engines if it looks like you are trying to manipulate search rankings with spam links. What the search engines are looking for is the most natural patterns of information so that they can return the most relevant results back to their users. If your links appear to be bought, spammed, or from any other sort of unreliable or shady source, you risk potentially getting banned from the search engines permanently and never ranking.
Understanding The Value of Web Links
The key to understanding web links is the recognition of value and quality of links. The reason writing high valued content is so important is because doing so will mean you have the highest chance of getting quality links pointing to your content. The next thing to understand is followable and non followable liks. A link that is set to no follow means that you don’t get any link juice passed from the link, and thus there is no benefit to the receiving web site. Links are like a recommendation for your site. Just a few highly valuable links can make an incredible impact on your website traffic. The less links a site has and the the more valuable that site is, the more value each outgoing link will have from that site.
Understanding Anchor Text
Your anchor text is really important and determines what keyword the link uses to get to your site. You might be tempted to build links and use your keyword phrase anchor text over and over again. Beware, this might have an opposite affect from what you expect. Your best bet is to vary each anchor text phrase just a little bit from one another. The reason you should do this is because this appears more natural to Google.
How To Perform Proper Link Building
Link building takes time, but can yield tremendous benefits and value. You must understand the search engine’s process in order to know how link building works. Search engines periodically go through all information on the web with what is called a spider. The spider “crawls” all of its information and then puts it into its index if it meets the requirements to be indexed. Once the information is in the index, it should show up in search results. In order to show up in search results, a complex and sophisticated set of algorithms is run across the data in the search engine’s database. This information calculates how many links are pointing to a particular page, and then gives it value based on this information. To recognize backlinks it can sometimes take a while for these links to propogate into the search engine system, but if you are patient you will eventually see results. To perform link building, look to build links on valuable, and high quality sites that offer do follow links. Below I will list the basic link building strategies:
- Blog Commenting – This is a good strategy if you find the right blogs. Find blogs related to your content, and post comments to interact with the community. If you post meaningful comments and information, you will most likely be approved to leave a link at the end of your post or in your post. Don’t forget that when you create an account on a blog you can specify your URL so that others can click on your name when you make a post and see where it came from. Most blogs require comment approval before your comment goes live, whilst others are set to auto approve. Post valuable content so your comments are much more likely to be approved.
- Forum Posting – Forum posting is similar to blog posting but usually the hardest part is getting your account created and approved. Once your account is created you can post relevant and valuable comments with embedded links to generate backlinks to your site.
- General Website Directories – There are a lot of directories out there where you can post a link to your website directly. This can take a long time to get approved but is a great way to get a valuable link.
- Article Directories – This method used to work wonders and be an incredible way to drive targeted traffic to your website. After Google’s Panda update, however, Google significantly reduced the value of Article Directories such as EZineArticles and GoArticles because of all the crap content that was on those sites. It has all boiled down to quality, value, and uniqueness, however. Currently most article directory sites including those just mentioned now have a strict set of guidelines before getting an article approved and published. Squidoo and Hubpages are also two great websites to post your articles. The trick to writing articles is to lead the reader into something of value so he reads through to the end. Once your reader gets to the end of the article you usually can put in a link to your site.
- Link Exchanges – Remember as I mentioned before, it is all about value and quality. It is much better to have a few good links than thousands of crappy ones. One method that can work wonders if you are a real diplomat is to simply ask another site related to yours if they want to exchange links with you. But just as everything in life, they will only want to exchange links if you offer them a valuable place to put their link as well. It can’t hurt to ask!
Conclusion About Off Page SEO
There are a lot of ways to get backlinks to your site. If you follow the above guidelines you should maximize your chance at successfully building backlinks to your site. As mentioned many times, it all boils down to quality. If you want others to link to your content, your content has to be worth it. There is no substitute for quality and value when producing online content. If you carefully interact with the community and build links through the above mentioned process, in no time you should be seeing a steady flow of laser targeted traffic to your website.