LinxJinx – The Inbound Links Encyclopedia

 

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LinxJinx – The Inbound Links Encyclopedia

 

Do you feel your site is suffering from Linx Jinx – not having enough quality inbound links? This encyclopedia is for you; it (tries to) delve into the various tips and tricks using which you can get high quality inbound links to your web site.

 

Tools & Tips for Getting Quality Inbound Links

 

Getting high quality links is not easy. You might say, “But I can pay for the links and get them easily.” Yes, you can pay and get good inbound links, but these cost money (sometimes a lot of it), and search engines are constantly trying to devalue paid links – implying that these might not be a great long term investment. We all know that organic quality links are the best long-term investment, but it can be devilishly difficult to get them. Or is it?

 

When I started my childish attempts at getting back-links almost a year ago, I almost gave up after a few days because I was convinced that you either had to be a big company with a lot of resources, an A-list blogger, or had such a unique web resource that people would simply love to link to it. Thinking back, even today I feel that I was not entirely wrong in my conviction. But what has changed in my thinking today is that I feel there are smart & creative ways for small guys like me to get good back links, with limited resources and for a web site that has nothing earth-shaking to offer. I might not be able to get hundreds of links that the large sites with resources or A-list bloggers get, but I realized that I don’t really have to in order to succeed in the web traffic game.

 

I have put down all the ideas I came across in my researches in this regard; for completeness sake, I have included concepts such as paid links as well – I might not think they are great, but there are many experts around the web who feel that paid links works. Who am I to say they are wrong!

 

I hope this list is useful to you.

 

I’d like to continue updating this section with any new strategies I come across; if you feel there are ideas that could be included here, please let me know by sending a note to [narsi]REMOVE@REMOVE[esource].REMOVE[in] (remove [] & the words REMOVE). All ideas that are included here will be duly credited with – what else - a  link to your preferred site

 

Formally, this page is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Informally (though not precisely) it means you are free to take any or all the contents from this page for personal, professional or whatever other purposes you wish to use them. I’d request you to give a link to this page. Note the word “request” – I’m just trying to follow what I have put down below viz., if you request someone to give a link, they are more likely to give it to you than if you had put that as a pre-condition. Let me see if this hypothesis is correct J

 

Note: The ones I have marked ***** are some of the most important for search engine rankings, in my opinion

 

Getting Inbound Links – Smartass Ideas, Tools, Strategies and More

 

  • ***** Focus on getting links from authoritative sites – by far, this is the most important method to get valuable inbound links. Not just according to me, even experts at Google such as Matt Cutts have acknowledged that the value is very high for links from expert and authority sites that are related to your domain.
    • What are authority sites? Well, let’s get it from the horse’s mouth: The PageRank formula of Google, which is its cornerstone, was derived from a research paper in which the authors, Bharat and Mihaila, define an authority site in the text below: "We believe a page is an authority on the query topic if and only if some of the best experts on the query topic point to it. Of course in practice some expert pages may be experts on a broader or related topic. If so, only a subset of the hyperlinks on the expert page may be relevant." (thanks to this post on How to Build an Authority Site from Idea Marketers)…So, in essence, authority sites are those that experts in a field refer to, from their sites.
    • Getting a few links from authority sites is much better than getting gobbles of links from low quality sites. You will be surprised to see sites with 10 back-links from high quality sites outperforming sites having thousands of back-links from random sites. But it is only natural that search engines have started discriminating back-links based on quality. And it will be even more so in future, as link spamming increases.
    • Now the crucial question: what is the best method to make authority sites give links to you? The answer, not surprisingly, is simple: Make your site an authority site. Having an authority site makes everything better for you. It is a great link-bait, it is easier to convince others to give links to you when you send a request to them, and best of all, your site will become stronger with every passing day for your domain.
    • Tips and strategies to make an authority site with minimum resources: If you are Time Warner, it is not difficult to make an authority site on any topic – throw a few million dollars and you have it. But as an entrepreneur with minimum resources, how do you do it? In order to answer this question, let’s look at the components of an authority site:
      • Loads of content - > lots of sections and pages for the domain
      • Interactivity - > highly trafficked blogs & message boards…
      • Regular content updates - > regular content updates, news, expert opinions
      • Recognized as a definitive site in your field

When you look at the above list, it becomes rather clear that it is very difficult, if not downright impossible, for a small entrepreneur to build an authority site in a broad area. That is, if you intend to build an authority site on “Music,” just forget it. You have lost the game even before you started. It is essential that you choose a theme that is reasonably narrow and yet has a large enough audience. Instead of “Music,” how about Indian Classical Music, if you happen to be an Indian and have a good idea of the domain? Similarly, instead of the broad topic “Travel,” how about “Travel Technology,” if you happen to be a travel technology professional? Spend enough time in choosing a niche that is (a) useful, (b) has relatively few authority sites, and (c) has a large enough audience. Other tips for authority site building for small entrepreneurs:

      • If your site is built around addressing a pain point, it can grow much faster. For example, I wish to make LinxJinx an authority on building inbound links. My expectation is that this theme, because it tries to address a major pain point, could enable this section to grow much faster.
      • If the main theme of your site invokes passion or similar feelings, the growth can be even better. Some examples of themes that involve “passion” are: Open Source / Free Software, Energy Independence / Alternative Energy, Gaming & Gaming Gadgets, Sports…I doubt if link-building is as passionate a topic as Open Source for instance, but it is a hotly discussed & debated topic all over the web, so it could have some “passion” value…
      • If you find the topic discussed in many places online, but only in a one-off and disjointed way, it could be a great topic for you to start an authority site. I find that getting links is a topic that thousands of blogs and web sites are discussing everyday (and many of the inputs are really excellent, as can be seen from links given to various posts in this page), yet there is no central hub that discusses only link-building. But this is the most important criterion for search engine ranking and to any online business success! I’m hoping LinxJinx becomes a hub for link-building info over a period of time.
      • Make sure you provide links to all sorts of online tools and assistance that are relevant to your domain. If your theme tries to address a pain point, it is most likely that there will be a number of tools and widgets required for solution to the pain area. Be on the lookout for these tools constantly and provide links to the same. This is a rather simple job that requires a good knowledge of the types of tools relevant for your domain and a habit of constantly on the prowl to collect such inputs. For example, link-building requires search for and identification of a number of directories, authority sites, eZines etc. I plan to provide separate sections soon at LinxJinx where I will aggregate links to these web resources, hopefully customized to various domains and industries.
      • Web resources for authority site building - An interesting post from Net Business Blog: How To Make Google Think You Have An Authority Site – some resources for building authority web sites – Building your Own Authority Websites – Online Web Consultants, Are You an Authority? - A Case Study, from Affiliate Marketing Diary; How to Build an Authority Site by Brandon Hall @ Idea Marketers, Creating & Succeeding with an Authority Site – an excellent, detailed guide – from Web 2 Traffic Secrets (PDF)
      • Now read this interesting post from Net Business Blog and you will know why creating authority web sites might not be as difficult as one might think: "I found a gold mine of a niche. This niche captures over 10% of the US market. Its market value is over $500 million and growing. It has good affiliate programs that pay out fairly well. But what’s really great about this niche is the top rankings are filled with commercial sites. Why is this so great? Well, Google hasn’t found an information webpage that it wants to rank consistently. According to Google, there are no experts, just stores."
    • OK, now you have an authority site, how do you go about getting links from other authority sites? – This can be both organic and inorganic. Organic links, considered to be most valuable from a search engine point of view, happen over a period of time as more and more authority sites discover you and provide links to relevant sections of your site. Inorganic link building happens when you undertake extra efforts to get more links to your site. While inorganic links might arguably have less value, especially if it is obvious to a search engine that these have links been obtained rather than given, they still have good value. And if you are smart enough in getting inorganic links from authority sites over a sustained period of time, in a gradual manner, these links could be considered on par with organic links, simply because there is no way a search engine would be able to figure out that these have been obtained through requests. It is my personal opinion that search engines will give almost the same weightage to authority links be they organic or inorganic, because your site has to be really good for it to get links from those sites. We will take each of the two types of authority link-building – organic links and inorganic links.
      • Organic Links – Never believe in the theory “build it and they will link,” even if your site is the greatest site of its kind in the world. Yes, organic link-building implies that folks link to you on their own, without your explicitly requesting them to do so, but even here being pro-active matters a lot. Accelerating organic link-building can be done by looking at three aspects: (1) Getting more authority site owners to visit your site, (2) Presenting your site in such a way they feel the urge to link to you, (3) Facilitating their linking to you
        • Getting authority site owners to visit your site – Using the knowledge of your domain, identify places on the web where other authority site-owners are most likely to visit – message boards, blogs, ezines etc., and make yourself prominent in these sites by valuable contribution.
        • Site presentation – Make sure that the words you use, titles and pictures and the rest project your site as an authority site. For heaven’s sake you don’t have to mention “I’m am authority site on travel technology” (J) , but if you project  the command of your subject in a professional manner on the site, it will impress other experts as well. And it is always useful to add a subtle line “If you find this site useful, perhaps you might want to link to us?” at a prominent location on each page.
        • Facilitating link-building – Add simple widgets like “mail this URL to my email/ send it to a friend,” “Add this page to your bookmarks” etc. These enable people to have your site in their mail or bookmarks where they can access it easily later. Having your link in their mail-box or bookmarks also constantly reminds them about your site, which might prompt them to add it to their site earlier than otherwise.
      • Inorganic Links from Authority Sites – This is in theory a rather straightforward process – identify authority sites, providing an incentive for them to link to you, and requesting them to provide a link. In practice however, it rarely works out that simple. Each of the stages – viz., identification of authority sites, formulating and implementing incentives for those sites to link to you, and the actual request for link – needs to be done with a good amount of meticulousness and planning.
        • Identification of Authority Sites – Even before you identify authority sites, make a logical categorization of your domain. If you are building an authority site on boats, some of the logical categories could be: boat design & manufacturing, boat parts, boat maintenance & repair, types of boats etc. Typically, for niche areas such as these, you should be able to identify about 10 sub-categories at the first level. Each of these categories should be divided into further sub-categories. For instance, boat maintenance & repair could be further divided into boat protection, boat maintenance companies, boat maintenance materials, trends in boat maintenance etc. Depending on the domain, you might be able to have 5-10 sub-categories for each category, which means you could have 50-100 topics under your main theme. This exercise appears academic, but it is not. Please make sure you do this exercise as soon as you start working on your authority site. Once you have these sub-topics in place, you should be able to identify authority sites for each of the sub-topics. You might not be able to get great sites for every of the 50 topics, but if you do a meticulous job, you will typically have around 200 sites in all, which could be considered authority sites or close to being authority sites for their respective sub-topics. The actual process of identifying directories will involve using relevant key words in search engines, looking at directories for the topic or sub-topic and looking at the links provided at authority sites. Allocate a reasonable amount of time to identify these sites (could be about 50 hours of work). Web resources: Debra Mastaler has some thoughts on identifying authority sites, at this post. She suggests using Google Directory, Technorati search with the sites ranked by authority and Wikipedia External Links section.
        • Formulating & implementing incentives for the authority sites to link to you – This is the toughest part of the job. Authority sites, by definition, are definitive sites, and as such will be very choosy about whom they will provide links to. The best incentive you can provide an authority site to link to you is to make your site (or a part of your site) irresistible to the authority site. How can you do this? If your site is a really unique site and provides exceptional value, this alone could be enough of an attraction. But what if your theme is not so unique – in this case, it is best to try to build each of the main sections in such a way that each is truly exceptional. Let me give an example. If your site is on boats, it is probable that to a site that is an authority on boat engines your site overall might not appear so irresistible, simply because they might not be able to relate to the boat industry as a whole. But if you had built the Boat Parts category really well, this part could appear very appealing to the boat engine site. Essentially, you are creating multiple centres of excellence within your domain. Is this appeal alone enough for authority sites to give a link to you? Many times yes, but not always. Those few times, giving a link back to them holds value to these sites as well, but you might want to give a link to them at a suitable section in such a manner than the link is truly useful to your visitors – rather than giving it in a general links page. This will be more appreciated by the authority site as well.
        • Request for Link – This is the easiest part of the three. The best way to request them is to send a polite email in which you provide a brief but clear background about your site and how it will add value. You then request the site owner to visit your site and provide their feedback so you could use these for future improvements. Mention your request for a back link towards the end of the mail…if you had given a link to the authority site, mention it in the beginning part of the mail, and also provide the URL where they can see their link. After sending the mail, wait for a few days and if you have not heard from them, send them a second request for their feedback alone – don’t mention the back-link, not very explicitly at least. If they don’t respond the second time round as well, you might want to leave them alone for a few months before trying again. If they respond with their feedback (but not a link), engage them productively and make friends. Once you have got the relationship to such a stage, getting a back link is not too far away!

 

 

  • ***** Continuously write great articles & get inbound links through popular media sites & ezines - This is not easy and most people will feel it is not worth the effort, but that is not so. While you will not see immediate benefits for the quality time you spent in writing the article, a great article has exceptional potential, both short and long term. It has a chance of making it to the front page of Digg and giving your site loads of short-term inbound links. If it is of great quality, it could become viral and provide you more and more links. And if it is a topic that is of evergreen interest, the link could stay on many high quality web sites for years to come – just imagine the google juice!
    • An avenue related to eZines is the article directory. Most Internet marketers consider promoting link building by submitting to article directories one of the best marketing strategies around. An effective way to get links is to submit these high quality articles to article repositories / sites like eZine Articles, Top 7 Business, Go Articles and other article syndication sites which let you upload your original material, including your short bio and link to your website. Not only will these constitute good quality inbound links, you can also get a number of relevant visitors to your site through these links. Other article banks include: iSnare, Article Marketer, Article City, Idea Marketers, Netterweb & The Phantom Writers
    • Never think that your web site cannot appear on a CNN or Forbes…If you are willing to spend time researching a useful and currently hot subject (example: alternative energy) and put across a compelling article, it makes sense to mail a copy to the relevant journalists from the top publications (in many cases you will find their email addresses in the articles they write!). Yes, it is highly unlikely that they will republish even a small portion of your article, but they might make references to your article and web page; many of these journalists also have popular blogs they author in which they have much higher freedom to publish external content – so you can readily imagine the amount of exposure your article and web site can get, not to forget the google juice should your web page be mentioned in the article at Forbes!
    • It is important you balance quality and quantity while writing & publishing articles – The benefits of having very high quality articles published cannot be overstated – it has the potential to exponentially increase your traffic and inbound links.  But I’d consider that writing a good number of articles of good quality could be more important than writing too few articles of very high quality, given the nature of the Internet where even great content could simply lose out at times. If you are able to publish 3-5 articles of good quality a month (in which may be one could be of very high quality), you might be able to derive benefits from both quality and quantity.
    • Make sure you derive all the benefits from good–quality & high-quality articles – you might have originally written an excellent article primarily for eZines and article directories, but if it is so good, why don’t you popularize it through other avenues? Participate actively in blog posts & comments that are relevant to the topic and leave the link after your contribution. Join discussion in forums and message boards and make a mention of the article where relevant. Bookmark it in all the social bookmarking sites. Add related web resources for your article (and if it merits even a couple of more sections / pages of content) so that it has the potential to become an authority page for that subject. If your article happens to be on an interesting topic, perhaps it also makes sense to make a Squidoo lens for the same?

 

 

  • Write testimonials - Here's an interesting strategy strategy for getting good-quality links (thanks to SpryDev post on inbound links): Write a testimonial for a company whose products or services you use. Let me testimonial sound true, don't make it squamish or extravagant...a variation of this theme is writing free website reviews. Some web sites include reviews of their business on their web site. Even if they don't currently, they could be interested in including interesting reviews in future. Write a good quality (but not very long - 500 words max) review about a web site that you particularly like. Send your review to the webmaster of that site and request them to consider it for publication. Also request them to consider publishing your web site link at the end of it. Please make sure that you are requesting them to add your link. Nobody likes to have this as a condition, even though they know that you had written the review for the sake of the link. If you had written a fair and useful review and requested them for a link, most web sites owners would be glad to give you one, you don't have them order them to do so - in fact ordering them to do so will backfire in most cases.

 

 

 

 

  • ***** Have a Bigg focus on Digg! - Let's put it simply: a story that gets into the top 10 in Digg could get over 20,000 clicks and possibly over 200 links. Do we need to say more? But how the heck does one get dugg many times to make it to the first page of Digg? Well, while there are some who appear to go by the purist theory that if you have a great news article it will get Dugg many times over in the first few minutes and you will make it to the top page, we’d err on the side of caution. Your article is most likely to get dugg many times in the first few minutes if you have friends who are willing to digg it very quickly. There are a number of web resources that guide you on how to succeed while posting to Digg and other UGC (user generated content) sites, we will just mention this – spend enough time finetuning your title and the brief description you provide. See also a cool tool called Headline Analyser that will analyze your headline to determine the Emotional Marketing Value (EMV) score.

 

  • Use group & community sites such as Yahoo Answers, Google Answers & Google Groups in an optimal manner. These sites are from the biggies and they get tons of visitors everyday. This means that if you take the time and effort to continuously answer questions well at these sites (and add a link to your site where suitable), these mega-community sites could drive a lot of traffic to you – and some links in the process. I’m not sure if having links at these sites are valuable in themselves, because most of them have the rel=no follow tags, but they could get you quality, valid links indirectly

 

   

  • ***** Fill up your Web site with information they can’t live without (thanks to the Sprydev post on making your site irresistible). "The best way to encourage great links is by making your Web site the finest source of information available on the Web. Become an authority. Fill up your pages with articles, blogs, FAQs, and news people simply can’t live without. Make your link a “must-have” to readers in your field."

 

 

  • Message Boards – put your URL in your signature. Make sure that you have different and relevant anchor texts. That is, if you submit messages to multiple message boards and have your signature in each, make sure that the signatures are different in each, else to a search engine it might look like spam. Getting visibility from message boards is an art in itself and if used well, can be the best method to get visibility to your site – this is especially true for new sites. Rather than doing a one-off promotional posting at message boards, you might want to consider the following steps to make participation in message boards a truly rewarding experience for you as well as the forum members.
    • Read the forum rules, and respect them. If the forum explicitly states that you cannot include a URL or a signature at the end of the post, please do not. You might just want to mention the name of your site at the end of the post and some people might search for your site on Google this way.
    • Respond to messages that you have knowledge or expertise in. Rather than trying to post a new message, with your link, you might want to provide a high-quality and detailed response to any posts in the message for which you feel you can contribute. This is sometimes a better method than individual posts because existing /old messages could be on pages with a better Google PageRank, while new posts will be on new pages with no PR.
    • Write something really useful, with lots of data included preferably. Message board members love quality content and data, because these are all chatty people who wish to take something useful from a message board. Spend some time drafting your copy (whether it is a new post or a response to another post) and do some research to find out related web resources, secondary data, or latest news on the topic and include these…this way, it becomes not just a random post, but a useful article that people can read and forward. It also ensures that many people read your post and could click on the link to your site. If the topic of your discussion is really interesting, the post could become one of the sticky posts in the message board and could give you traffic and Google juice for months and sometimes even years to come!

 

 

  • ***** Using blogs to build links. Blogs are one of the best ways to get many inbound links in a short span of time. Why is this so? This is so because (a) blogs are quite personal in nature and hence it is much easier to access the author of a blog than to access the webmaster of a web site, (b) blogs make it very easy to provide links to other blogs and posts, and (c) blogs thrive on having posts that are opinions and theme-extensions of posts from other blogs. There are a number of excellent resources that tell you how to build a successful blog that gets gobs of links everyday – the key success factor you will find is your willingness to spend time and effort in cultivating relationships and interacting & contributing in a valuable manner. If you are running a blog, make sure you learn how to use tags, and plug them into Technorati.
    • Having a blog on your site, and having it properly set up to ping the blog update services, and with tagging for sites such as Technorati, will get you one way inbound links every time you blog. This is an especially strong way to get linkbacks since people who have an interest in what you do will subscribe to your blog via RSS, and people who subscribe to update services based on certain keyphrases will know if you’ve written about something they’re interested in. (thanks to the KickAss Web Design post for this)
    • Using trackbacks regularly in other blogs can get you a good number of links over a period of 4-6 months. Some of the popular blogging systems such as Blogger does not have the trackback facility but there are workarounds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Wikipedia link – if your page or site is an authority at a topic, you can include your link in the “External Links” section @ Wikipedia. It is true that Wikipedia has the “rel=nofollow” tags for outbound links and thus your site won’t get any Google credits by being listed at Wikipedia, but the indirect long-term benefits of being listed at such an authority site are obvious. But just make sure that your site is really good; else it is unlikely it will stay in Wikipedia for more than a couple of days.

 

 

  • Do a page on Squidoo. Spend time in developing a Squidoo lens. The temptation is just to put your site link and description and you might start off with that, nothing wrong, but start developing your lens to much higher levels soon so that it becomes a real authority for your domain. Squidoo has a lot of weight at Google, so having a great resource at Squidoo could mean a lot more than having that resource in your own site!

 

 

  • Never hesitate to give a back link to a site you find useful. Giving links to useful resources embedded in your article makes your readers happy, sometimes even makes the search engines happy and most important, makes the owner of that web site or blog happy. This was originally what hyperlinks were intended for, and these are the types of links that search engines respect and value. Well, it never hurts to inform the owner of the web site that you have given a link to his/her web resource – if it is a blog post link to another blog post, the owner can get automatically informed about a link. Else, sending a polite note could get you a link! A more subtle way to notify the owner (though not effective always) is to click on the various links you have provided yourself, once in a few days. When the owner of the web site analyses his access log, he/she will come to know that you have given a link…giving links is even more powerful in the context of blogs where a back link to your blog or a post could happen even within minutes of your giving a link to that blog.

 

 

 

 

  • ***** Can you do some unique themes around popular topics? For instance, can you provide a list of 100 links to photographs of Paris Hilton doing very interesting things (no, no, we just mean interesting – perhaps Paris Hilton praying at a Church or Paris Hilton serving food to street destitutes etc…)? Can you find out the last words of all the top Iraqi leaders (such as Saddam Hussein) who have been executed? Can you provide a list of the net worth of every US senator? These are unique themes built around popular topics and these have a good chance of going viral. Yes, it takes time to build such quality topics, but the long term benefits are very good. Ideas such as these fall into the LinkBait and Viral Marketing categories, and for both topics you will find a good list of web/blog resources further down the page.

 

 

  • "...Another way that many bloggers are getting inbound links is through a feature called “Top Commenters.”  Blogs use this feature to encourage comment by listing the people who comment the most frequently on their blog.  Many top commenter links do not have the nofollow attribute attached to it.  Therefore, a link on a blog’s Top Commenters will count as an inbound link.  This is a great way to get inbound links from high PR sites.  There are many high PR sites which have few commenters.  It may only take 2-3 comments a week or even month to remain on there...." (Thanks to the article on Increasing your site traffic through commenting @ 2 Bros Blogging)

 

 

  • While talking about commenting in blogs, even if you don’t feature in the Top Commentors space, if you leave relevant and useful comments with your blog link attached at end of the comment, and if your blog happens to be an interesting one in a related domain, there is a good chance that the blog owner will make a note about your blog in a subsequent post, thus giving you a valid inbound link! In this context, while most blog posts have the dreaded “rel=nofollow” tag for links in comments, some don’t. If you find blogs in your domain that do not have this tag for comments, contribute well and continuously to this blog because every comment alone earns you a valid link.

 

 

  • Paid-for Inbound Links - Buying and selling text links on high-PageRank web pages is a growing business. Buying good traffic-generating “clean” links is an option you might want to consider, though it might not be the most cost-effective. And you also might want to be careful about the legitimacy of the pay-for-links providers, and whether they can give inbound links to your site from relevant & related domains. While the pay-for-links method has its disadvantages, it confers better long-term potential than pay-per-click advertising, which confers no SEO benefit. In future however, the market potential is not certain for paid-for links because major search engines such as Google are actively trying to negate the influence of these links. This AdvanceDin post on one-way web links provides some insights on the cons of pay-for inbound links

 

 

  • Content Syndication Services – These are similar to article directories, and one might consider them closer to RSS that are used heavily in blogs. Whichever way you wish to think, content syndication services essentially provide a platform by which you can distribute your content to many web sites around the world, with your web site link thrown in at the end. Content syndication services are a useful way to get back links from a large number of web sites quickly. Press releases are a content syndication service as well. It is not uncommon for a well-written press release to be picked up by hundreds of websites.
    • RSS Feeds and Blogs - In addition to submitting your articles to article directories, you can create an RSS feed out of it as well. Blogs are another form of content syndication...The beauty of RSS is that you don’t have to resubmit every time you add a new article. A useful software that has been mentioned by the author of this post is Feedforall (http://www.feedforall.com/). This software helps you to create your RSS feed. All you have to do is paste your article information into the software, and it generates the XML for you. See also this interesting post 9 Tips for Maximising Inbound Links Using RSS & Atom Feeds from the Blogging Tip blog. You can also make blog syndication better by submitting your blog or site feed to top RSS and feed directories like RSS Network, Syndic8, 2RSS, RSSfeeds and YourFeeds.

  

 

 

 

  • Host a free article directory. Why not create an article directory on your website and have visitors submit articles to it? You can then request a link back to your website in exchange for the article submission. This will improve your inbound links while also creating free content for your website." Thanks to this post on Build, Increase & Improve Website Links from Link Popularity Tips blog. Not sure how well this will work, but this is an interesting idea all the same

 

 

  • Make it easy for visitors to bookmark your page by adding the “Save it your bookmarks” icon from the popular social bookmarking sites such as Del.icio.us, StumbleUpon etc. Every bookmark is an inbound link! And while we are at the topic of bookmarking, add the main pages of your site to all the bookmarking sites – start this yourself, and don’t wait for the rest of the world to do this, it could take forever! Get to know a good list of social bookmarking sites from here.

 

 

  • Use URL Wire to launch a site: Eric Ward's URL Wire is a great way to announce the launch of a new site.

 

 

  • If a forum is applicable for your site/theme, create one. Forums provide many advantages - you will get many more pages indexed and posts in a forum regularly get linked to from other forums or sometimes even from authority sites if the content is very good.

 

 

  • ***** Try to get .edu & .gov sites link to you – not easy, but it can be done. Getting back links from .gov and .edu forums and blogs could be easier (though these might not have as much Google juice as traditional web pages from these TLDs could). In order to do this, you need to (a) identify relevant blogs and forum posts, and (b) interact with them in a productive manner and gain valuable backlinks. See interesting posts here & here on identifying the .edu & .gov blogs. Another creative way of searching for .gov or .edu links would be to type in Google: .gov "powered by vBulletin"...The best way to get back links from .gov and .edu sites (links from their traditional pages) would be to be an authority on a subject. If the theme of your site is too broad, it is next to impossible to become an authority on such a theme, so identify narrow sub-themes within the main theme and become an authority on those. And some would suggest many more creative (though laborious) things to get those coveted .edu links!

 

 

  • Craig’s List – if you are posting a classified on Craig’s List (and it makes sense to), you can also throw in your web site link if it is relevant. There are debates whether a link from Craig’s List will really count in Google in the long run, and right now the answer is not clear, but a listing at Craig’s List could have short term benefits because your site / page could get spidered faster, especially useful if your site is new. And you might get a few extra, and relevant “business-oriented” clicks to your site as well. 

 

 

  • ***** Something simple but not always followed: Give cross-links for your web pages from the related pages (especially from high PR pages) at your web site. Don’t overdo it, because then these cross links might lose their value, but when done judiciously, they can confer some weight to the linked pages and more important, useful cross web site traffic. After all, this was what the hyperlinks were originally meant for…

 

 

  • Mention on your site that you welcome inbound links. You think this is obvious? Perhaps yes, but a subtle reminder to the visitor from you on your important pages about giving a link doesn’t exactly hurt. And if your site has a section where you provide links to related web sites, mention this and request interested link exchange partners to contact you.

 

A few related points to remember:

 

  • Check your inbound links anchor text - (courtesy Andy Coates blog post on anchor text ) - While we do not always have control over what anchor text is used when people link to our sites and we are relying on the good nature of people to link to us using good descriptive anchor text. If you use Google webmaster tools you can see what text is being used when people are linking to you.

 

  • Try getting reverse links from unique domains. It will of course be obvious to you that 1000 links from the same domain (say different pages of the same blog) is not as great as 10 links from different sites with different main domain names.

 

  • Get links not just to your homepage but also to lots of inside pages – the “deep linking” concept. This will make your site stronger overall from a search engine point of view.

 

  • Most webmasters are reluctant to link out from their home pages, so getting home page links pointing to your own website can be difficult. But there is a simple and effective way to get of home page links - find websites that are relatively new and offer the webmasters a good link from two or three internal, well-established pages on your site in exchange for a home page link on theirs...(nice tip, thanks to the post on How to Get Lots of Home Page Links @ The Alternative Broadcasting Online News Station blog)

  

  • Search engines apparently penalise sites that give outbound links to shady sites. So you’ll do well to be careful about whom you link to.

 

  • Non-reciprocal links are much better than reciprocal links

 

  • Strive to get your inbound links placed on pages with few outbound links...the fewer the better.

 

  • Look for permanent links – most paid-for links are not permanent; links from message boards etc., while easy to get are permanent only in theory – many of the message board pages might not exist after a couple of years. Some of the best permanent links can be obtained from authority pages. Why? Simply because authority pages have very long lives, and they rarely delete their outbound links because these were selected with a lot of care in the first place!

 

  • In addition to having great content on your site, a good way to get back links from authority sites would be to submit great and relevant articles to be published on their sites with a link back to yours. (a related, nice post on 12 Different Links and How to Get Them, from StunDubl)

 

 

Web  Resources for LinkBaits, Link Ninjas & Other Ways of Getting Quality Inbound Links

 

 

  • 9 Tips for Getting Started with Link Building from Eric Enge @ Search Engine Watch - Putting together a strategy for get links to a site is one of the hardest parts of SEO. Too many people jump right in to trying to get people to link to their site, when they should be taking the time to lay the proper groundwork in place to have a link worthy site. Here are 9 quick tips on how to approach the task. An excellent list, simple and brief but every tip is worth remembering and implementing.

 

 

  • Leveraging Linkbait - an excellent and detailed introduction to and analysis of link bait, also has 7 tips for linkbait success. Read this blog post from the Yahoo Publisher Network

 

  • Good list of Linkbaiting tips from Jim Westergren

 

  • Andy Hagan's Ultimate Guide to Link Baiting and Social Media Marketing - One naturally gets skeptical when one sees the words ultimate guide, but having read through what Andy has to say at this post, I fully agree with a comment found at the bottom of the post, "If you can’t figure things out with Andy’s guide to linkbaiting, then you’re probably not gonna catch on. Notice it is not a guide - it is an ULTIMATE guide." Andy, thank you!

 

  • Ten Ways for Getting Links to your Site – an excellent list of points from Go 4 Expert forums. What I liked about the points were most of these have to do with planning for getting those back-links, a topic most posts on this subject have not covered in depth

 

 

  • Link Baiting: Great Idea or Passing Fad? asks Jennifer Laycock in this January, 2007 post at Search Engine Guide. She feels that Link Baiting as a concept is here to stay. Read more from her blog post here

 

 

 

  • The Enormous Link-bait List - from Cornwall SEO - looks like someone got there before BigList! Excellent list of over 100 (did not really count it, but guess should be over a ton) blog resources for link bait info.

 

  • Beginners’Guide to Link Bait – a useful blog post @ Blog Storm. Discusses the various ways to create a link bait and some insights into each of the methods – methods discussed – Top 10 lists, articles, news, tools & controversies

 

  • Linking the Unlinkable – When Digg Won’t Work. This interesting post from Search Engine Land provides inputs on link-baiting strategies for domains that do not appear suitable for link-baiting.

                                                                                                      

  • Link Building vs. Link Baiting vs. Genuine Buzz - Listen to what Mike Levin says, it is interesting, "My question to you is how hard did Steve Jobs have to work to get everyone to link to Apple on the iPhone? Creating products that are insanely great is a viable alternative to manipulative SEO techniques. Of course, this is manipulation of another sort. But if you can create genuine buzz around a new category of product that fulfills a real need, the urgency to perform SEO goes down. You don't have to ask for a single link. People link to you, naturally." Absolutely! The only problem is, not every one of us has a Steve Jobs or even nearabouts in us. But that is no reason not to read this well-thought-and-written post @ the Hit Tail blog

 

  • The Art of Linkbaiting - One of the earliest blog posts I found on Link Baiting (Nov 2005) written by David Krug @ Performancing.com - He says as a preamble to the article, Linkbaiting "is not without potential perils, but the time honored tradition of being contrary, in order to get attention is well proved, and done right, it's a killer way to break into a new area. There are also safer ways of linkbaitng, they're just less fun :)." David goes on to say that you need a hook to bait a link and looks at some ppular "hooks": (a) News hook, (b) Contrary Hook, (c) Attack Hook, (d) Resource Hook, (e) Humour Hook. Excellent post, read the full article here

 

 

  • Asking for links - in this well-analysed blog post Kate provides us with a logical approach while asking for links from other blogs / bloggers

 

 

 

  • Online Publicity and Link Building in 2007: An Eric Ward Webcast - an excellent coverage of the web cast by Tamar @ the 10e20 blog

 

 

 

 

  • Don't take the (link) bait - Actually, I don't have a strong objection to link bait. I do have a strong objection to the term, and its unfortunate connotations. The whole notion of baiting someone is not positive. And if you buy into the term, it becomes tempting to buy into bad ideas, says Eric Enge at this Search Engine Watch blog post

 

 

 

  • The Art of Linkbaiting - by Performancing @ the Performancing blog post - one of the earliest, much quoted, article on Link Baiting - November 8, 2005

 

  • Link Bait Tips - Most of you know the importance of links when it comes to respectable search engine rankings. You need one to get the other. However, how do you go about attracting these prospective linkers? - from Web Pro News blog post

 

  • More about my Link Bait Content Strategy and Concepting Service - So you think you need some linkbait? Maybe, maybe not. If you are seeking a linkbait service for the sole purpose of quick high search engine rankings, you might want to stop, because that's what everyone is trying. In my opinion that approach isn't very wise. In this new era of personalized search results, links are more important than ever, and linkbait needs to be white-hat and about verticality, not just algorithms, says Eric Ward at this post @ the Eric Ward blog

 

  • Link Bait: The Down Side - One of the hot topics in the SEO community over the past couple of years has been link bait. It is often characterized as an obvious good - why wouldn’t anyone try and get links - however, as with any marketing strategy, it has pros and cons, says this blog post at the V7 Network

 

  • Inbound Links – building & structuring incoming links; a brief but insightful article from Search Engine Promotion Help

 

 

 

 

 

  • The Resource Linkbait - Using Lists to Build Authority, Traffic and Links to your Website - from Dosh Dosh blog post

 

 

 

  • The How-Tos of Linkbait for Affiliates - The author makes a confession to start with: "Let me start this one off by saying that while I am a big proponent of linkbait, I can’t admit to ever having successfully produced any linkbait – so what I am sharing today comes from my research (read: reading blog posts) on the topic, not from hands-on experience. With that in mind, let’s do this…" Read this useful post from Affiliate Blog

 

  • Session: Link Baiting & Viral Search Success - Posted by Thomas McMahon; Sitting in on the link baiting session the presenters made it sound so easy. Rand talked about how, on average, a front page Digg post or exposure on Techcrunch can get you 2000 new inbound links. That’s an astronomical amount of links and the good thing is, everyone can can do it. Here are some things to consider - a good list of 20+ points, excellent!

 

  • Traffic Without Search Engines - Yes, It Can Be Done - By Jerely @ Nusuni - There comes a time in every blog’s life when it gets little or no traffic from search engines. It has happened to everyone at one point - getting kicked out of the search rankings temporarily. Just like with monetization, it is vitally important to have multiple streams [of traffic] so your blog can survive when Google betrays you, says Jeremy and tells us how to do this

 

  • Viral Marketing and SEO, It’s So Easy - says Nathaniel Broughton - seems stupid to me on the surface, but viral marketing is so much about playing on that universal desire of people to feel cool, see their name, get props, etc., says the author and continues with this theme to provide some good ideas to make your content viral - from EnviSEO blog

 

  • Link Ninjas vs. Bait Pirates - Posted by great scott! While traditional link ("Link Ninjas") building is a necessary evil, I feel it is my sworn duty to make a case for the awesome power of a scurvy crew of Bait Pirates!, says Great Scott at SEO moz - interesting post

 

  • Six Top Linking Strategies - a February, 2007 by John Chow - "In my never-ending quest to get more backlinks I have tried many methods, which I will share with you. These link building techniques have so far generated 7,218 links from 1,952 blogs, according to Technorati. That’s good enough to rank me 413th most popular blog on the Internet. Moreover, this is just the number of blogs linking to me. According to Yahoo, over 58,000 websites link to John Chow dot Com."...These data should be enough to make you want to read this post @ John Chow dot com

 

  • Internal Linking Strategy: SEO Self Reflection - SEO articles abound on social media linking strategies. SEO blog posts are legion on the topic of link and widget bait. SEO forums buzz endlessly about reciprocal versus one-way linking. There is no doubt that all of those various types of external, inbound links matter. But how often do we discuss internal linking strategies? Perhaps not often enough feels Mike Valentine in this post @ Reality SEO and tries to remedy this situation at this excellent post

 

 

  • Long Tail PR: how to do publicity without a press release (or the press) - "But what about the Long Tail of media--all those new influentials, from the micromedia of Techcrunch and Gizmodo to individual bloggers? And the social news aggregators like Digg and our own Reddit? They're where the most powerful sort of marketing--word of mouth--starts, but most of them don't want to hear from a PR person at all...So now imagine that you're one of those PR professionals. What do you do?" - asks Chris Anderson @ this post @ The Long Tail PR and provides some answers - and even more answers are provided in the comments section!

 

  • Using honey pots and sleepers to get higher search engine rankings - A successful search engine marketing strategy requires that you make use of a wide variety of web pages. Welcome to the world of sleepers, rockets and honey pots!, says this interesting article at Pandia Search Engine News. Know more about what these sleepers, rockets and honey pots are all about at this post.

 

 

 

  • PubCon - Viral and WOMM Marketing Management - Nov 16 2006 | Conferences - Once it goes viral, you can’t control it - or can you? This session will study the targeting criteria of word of mouth marketing and viral marketing management. Moderator: Todd Friesen; lots and lots of inputs and resources at this post

 

  • Link Building is Relationship Building - Posted in SEO by smbconsulting - By Jennifer Laycock - January, 2006 - "Most small business owners understand that one of the most important things they need to do in order to help their web sites rank better on the search engines is to build incoming links from quality, relevant web sites. I’ve written in the past about building the right content to serve as link bait, but the reality is that until your site starts to be found on its own, it’s hard to get those links, no matter how great your content is. That means that many small business owners will need to start off their link building campaign by asking for links. That may sound easy enough, but a good link request requires true skill to deliver," says Jennifer in this post

 

 

  • 101 Ways to Build Link Popularity - Wow, there really are 101 points in this post, some of them known ideas, some of them new and really worth trying - from the Make Money Gurus blog

 

  • Review John Chow dot Com and Get Traffic - There is something really interesting about this blog's link-baiting technique. To paraphrase in the author's own words: "John Chow dot Com is a blog that helps you make money online. He is offering to link to your blog if you review his blog." Interesting, isn't it? Read more from here

 

 

  • SES: Link Baiting And Viral Search Success, by: Thomas McMahon - Dec 2006 - Sitting in on the link baiting session the presenters made it sound so easy. Rand talked about how, on average, a front page Digg post or exposure on Techcrunch can get you 2000 new inbound links. Thomas provides a summary of points from the session

 

  • The real reason nobody reads your blog - Alister Cameron - "This post is dedicated to anyone who is grieving over the fact that after months of intense blogging...the stats keep telling you that no-one is coming. There’s just nobody out there! And you’re left asking yourself what on earth could the success formula be, that explains the meteoric rise of a (seemingly) lucky lucky few, and the slow realization of the great majority… that they’re going absolutely nowhere....Well fellow try-hard bloggers, there is light at the end of the tunnel," says Alister and ends up writing a detailed and excellent post. A must-must read for any one who has to do with blogging

 

  • Rand Fishkin’s 7 tips for Link Bait Success - December, 2006 by Eric Enge - This post provides a summary of Rand Fishkin’s list of 7 steps for Success in Link baiting. In order of link generating power, as determined by SEOmoz’s research, here is the list: (1) Digg, (2) Slashdot, (3) Fark, (4) Del.icio.us, (5) Reddit, (6) Boing Boing, (7) Techmeme, (8) Techcrunch, (9) Netscape, (10) Lifehacker, (11) StumbleUpon, (12) Shoutwire. read more from this post for specific tips on how to succeed in getting links and traffic with the above list and more

 

  • 10 Steps to a Viral Tutorial That Sells - October, 2006 post @ CopyBlogger - Can a tutorial attract links and traffic, while selling at the same time? We know that a well-written tutorial that stays strongly focused on benefits to the reader can fly under the “sales-alert” radar and lead to great results, says Brian Clark at this CopyBlogger post and provides us more suggestions for us to make this happen

 

 

  • SES: Link Baiting - Experienced Marketers Only - The Linkbaiting session at SES 2006 in San Jose offered bucket loads of link bait to hopeful link anglers, says Mike Banks Valentine, who provides his summary of the ideas at the event and his perspectives in this long and useful post at Web Pro News (Sep 2006)

 

 

  • The Power of Forum Promotion - January, 2007 - Discussion forums are everywhere. You can find forums for almost any subject you can think of, from train spotting to budgerigars. Certain forums happen to be extremely large with thousands of users logging in every single day, so naturally they have become a target for spam. How can you utilize the power of the discussion forum to drive traffic to your site without being branded a spammer? Read more from this post at My SEO Journey

 

 

  • Linking Odds & Ends - In this post, Eric Ward provides a helpful mashup of link building related notes, news, and tips. In his words, "This is my attempt to hide that I couldn't bear to write about link bait again..." - useful post, discussing some less-discussed ideas

 

 

  • The Essential Guide to Link Building - "Unless you already own a network of hundreds of established sites, which is very unlikely, link building can be by far the most difficult part about promoting a website, but it doesn’t have to be. Below are some tips and examples of some easy ways to get lots of good permanent links," says the author at this post at SEOlogs - an excellent guide to the beginner; has some useful nuggets for folks who know the trade too!

 

  • Link Building Wiki - Wow, this is a bible that I couldn't discover from any web search engine or blog search engine! Found this in a comments section of a blog post. Excellent, as I said before, a bible for all those link-builders out there

 

  • A Link Is A Reference And What It Is For Us - By: Yuri Filimonov - Nov 2006 - "It looks like everyone is obsessed with getting links, no matter the quality, targeted visitors or any ethical concerns," says the author and reminds us that once we realise that links are a reference, our whole perspective and strategies on link-building could change. A different take on link-building, interesting. From the Search Newz blog

 

 

  • Link Baiting (How Nick Wilson Created SEO Even Seth Godin Could Love) - @ the STUNTDUBL blog

 

 

  • I am Not a Link Communist - Todd @ Stuntdubl SEO blog - April 2006 blog post - Todd gives his opinion on trading of links for page popularity

 

  • Tips for finding the best pages to get links from - Part 1 & Part 2

 

 

 

 

  • No-one links to the linkers - by Andrew Garrett - Or, more accurately, no-one links to a post that just points them to another post, says the author at this blog post @ Andrew Garrett's Scroll of Emptiness

 

  • Link Building Guide - Jim Westergren at this post provides inputs that help you in your link building using 5 steps (1) Study and understand the guidelines for a natural simulation, (2) Study and understand your link profile, (3) Study and understand the effective ways to get links, (4) Work out your own link building program, (5) Get the links!. Read this handy guide here

 

 

  • Why are diggers nuts about Knuttz? - "The folks over at Knuttz.net have cracked the code on Digg. So listen up, I’m here to explain to you exactly how they do it (well, with one critical missing detail!)," says Alister Cameron at this blog post

 

  • Building an Audience - DailyBlogTip’s Traffic Generation Tips Project - Daniel at DailyBlogTips ran a group blogging project for tips on how to increase traffic to your site. The author of this note participated, and here are the group results as ordered by the Blogomatron 5000.

 

  • Are You Burning Blog Bridges? - by Chris Garrett, February, 2007 post @ Chris Garrett on New Media blog - "Snark, criticism, attack-bait, poking wasps nests, call it what you want, while it might be an effective “link bait” strategy, it’s not one I would recommend. This is the path to the dark side," says Chris in this interesting post, gives us some good ideas on what to avoid while blogging, and as a corollary what could be excellent long-term blogging strategies.

 

  • Exclusive: Is Spotplex a Better Digg? - Michael Arrington @ Tech Crunch - "News stories are not submitted by users, as with Digg. Instead, sites that want to participate include some javascript code on their site, which monitors what stories/posts are read. The more times a story is read, the higher it appears in Spotplex. Very popular stories will make it to the Spotplex home page," explains this post about Spotplex and provides an analysis of the pros and cons of Spotplex and what it means to a web site / blog. Interesting read

 

 

  • Secrets to Beating the Sandbox 2.0 REVEALED: The Ultimate Guide - By Andy "Organic-Is-My-Middle-Name" Hagans - though this post is arguably not directly about links or link-baiting, it tells us the importance of getting reverse links when our sites are sand-boxed by search engines - read google. Excellent post with detailed steps on what to do to get out of the sandbox - actually most of what-to-do is about getting trusted inbound links to our sad, sandboxed sites! - @ the Link Building Blog, Sep 2006 post

 

  • Organic SEO: Blogs cast the link bait - "Organic SEO might be a fashionable phrase in SEO circles, but the concept is as old (if you can call it that) as the internet itself. To use another SEO buzzword, we're talking link bait. In essence, it's all about the web page's content, and how it attracts natural inbound links," says Wayne Hurlbert at this Blog Business World blog, and provides some simple but handy strategies that can make your link-baiting more effective.

 

  • 21 Ways to Link Bait Success for Realtors - from Famous Agents web page - interesting to see a post on link-bait with special focus on a particular industry / vertical. Though most ideas discussed are discussed in a generic tone, some of the examples provided and perspectives are possibly unique for realtors, and hence an excellent read. One can readily understand how such customisations can be done for other verticals too!

 

 

 

 

 

Other Interesting SEO Resources

 

  • Effective SEO – The V7N Way – a nice introduction to SEO, and a good list of quite useful resources
  • 21 Essential SEO Techniques – from Search Engine Land

 

 

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