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Saturday, August 21, 2010

What Is All This Link Building About, Why are all the Webmasters And SEOs Falling In Link Love?

Before we discuss and understand about why everyone having a website today wants to get as many inbound links to their site, let us understand why , when and how all this importance to inbound links started.

We know that when any technology or algorithm becomes open and more and more people gain knowledge about it there is a tendency in general to use it or misuse it. If it is used in the right perspective then, it achieves the purpose for which it was built. But, when it is misused by the miscreants then it is a major matter of concern and needs to be restricted ASAP.

Way back Google announced a PageRank technology to display quality search results as the webmasters were misusing the keyword tag extensively and there was a lot of black hat which was affecting the quality of results on the search engines.

According to Google the Page Rank is defined as follows:

• PageRank Technology: PageRank reflects our view of the importance of web pages by considering more than 500 million variables and 2 billion terms. Pages that we believe are important pages receive a higher PageRank and are more likely to appear at the top of the search results.

PageRank also considers the importance of each page that casts a vote, as votes from some pages are considered to have greater value, thus giving the linked page greater value. We have always taken a pragmatic approach to help improve search quality and create useful products, and our technology uses the collective intelligence of the web to determine a page's importance.

Find detailed information here: http://www.google.com/corporate/tech.html

As mentioned above in the PageRank definition every link to your page is like a vote, a recommendation you make to the visitor coming to your site and thereby generating an online WOM for the linked site confirming your faith in the services and information offered by that company.

This is a very important and valuable opinion you give to your website visitors and in a way you vouch for it. Hence these links you give to other sites and the links your website gets were given importance by Google to determine the online standing of a company and business and hence the websites having a good inbound linking are considered to have higher popularity and given a higher PageRank .

The PageRank refelects how popular the webpage is online and thereby no doubt many times it is ranked high in the SERPs but let me tell you I have seen pages with ZERO PageRank also on Page 1 rankings of Google.

Inadequate SEO knowledge makes the SEO run after links. As a result there is a whole industry of Link Building which has come up and there are companies whose main service is to provide you links. Though there can be quality and innovative methods of getting links to your site as a continuous marketing effort but usually it gets limited to the easy way out by many to buy links from link farms or exchange links.

I am of the opinion that the term 'link building' itself is an incorrect term. Links do not have to be built but they should get built naturally in the process as your website starts getting a wider web presence and preference. The inbound links are something that your website earns by virtue of the quality foot prints it creates on the web as you reach out to more and more people by being focused on the valuable services and information offered by your website.

Buying a link is like telling someone that I shall pay you for speaking well about me. Now, how far is that ethical? How long will such a WOM last for your company’s credibility or in this matter keep your rankings high in SERPs? I am sure you have the answer . These short term solutions may give immediate results but will not ensure a long term web presence which should be the goal of any online marketing campaign. SEO has the possibility of achieving this if the SEO approach is ethical and as per the norms of the search engines.

I would like to emphasize here that yes having good quality links from authority and reputed sites and topical sites is essential and important but the way you achieve them is the main focus of this discussion.

To start with try to earn every link to your site as a result of unique, quality content and information on your site.

Yes, CONTENT is still the uncrowned king of the web since the first website went online and shall always remain inspite of millions websites coming on the web regularly.

Apart from a good qualitative site in all respects other genuine methods of gaining natural inbound links as your website goes from one milestone to another are as follows:

• Focus all your efforts on making the site informative, qualitative and content rich to get links automatically.

• Do not neglect the On-Page Optimization Basics and just go after links. (Very important from the SEO perspective)•

• Participate in social media networks for discussions and sharing of information and mention links to the relevant pages to your website. (It need not be the Home Page always)• People are sharing links on the social media like never before and whenever you tweet a link you are sharing it with so many people who are connected to your followers which again has the possibility and probability of gaining exponential reach. This in turn again offers a lot of scope for gaining unbiased genuine links.

• Have a social book marking button on your website.

• Make RSS feeds available on your website.

• Issue Press Releases periodically.

Create a whole ambience and atmosphere around your website which shall make websites link to the site you want. In a way ensuring that you don’t have to run after links but they instead walk up to your site and acheive the true purpose of the PageRank Technology by Google.

I think that it is the responsibility of every web developer, SEO and any one even remotely related to uploading and affecting the content on the web to add value to it in its own little way. 

Related Information on PageRank And Linking available here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PageRank

http://www.google.com/corporate/tech.html

http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=66736

http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=66356

http://blog.webpro.in/2010/06/pagerank-obsession-patience.html
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