Free Link Love – To Get It, Give It Up!
By Mary Bowling.
Those of us who have been in the SEO biz for a while tend to want to direct and manipulate the PageRank on our sites. You know the tricks. However, things are very different with blogs and, if you want yours to rank well, you need to let go of that concept.
Blogs are all about linking freely, not just to other posts and pages within your own site, but also out to other websites and blogs.
Blogs are about sharing information and insight. They are about relationships and communities. None of these can spawn or thrive without interaction. Links are their conduit to interaction and to get links, you have to give links. Here’s how and why:
People usually find out when you link to them, especially other bloggers. This often prompts them come to your blog to find out who you are and what you said about them or about what they said. They may then comment on your blog, link back to you and/or become a member of your community. Using good keywords in your outbound link text will also help to theme your pages.
Comment on other blogs
Because of comment spam, many blogs use no-followed links. Do not let this deter you from commenting. In the sea of spam, intelligent, thought-provoking commentary really stands out and it encourages the blogger and his or her readers to not only respond to your thoughts, but to visit your website, leave their own comments and to link to you.
Use a blogroll
Find and read other blogs on your topic. Then, point links at those you respect with your blogroll. Those bloggers will be alerted to your interest and may respond in kind. Thereâ€™s also been talk lately, notably by Bill Slawski of SEO by the Sea, that Google may somewhat reward blogs using blogrolls.
Where enabled, trackbacks allow you to go to other blogs and link back to posts on your blog as related stories. They essentially say, “If this post interests you, you might like this one, tooâ€. These links are valuable, even if they are no-followed, because they may draw the blogger and his readership to your blog and into your community. This may result in links and traffic.
Some blog platforms come standard with â€œno followâ€ tags on links in the comments. While leaving these enabled does deter some spammers, it will not keep most of them away. I prefer to reward readers who leave good comments with a link, so they will return and become part of my blog community and, perhaps, link to me. If your blog links are no-followed by default, search for appropriate “do follow” plugins to disable this feature.
Use good internal linking strategies
Links between your own posts and pages should use good keywords to lead the search engines to related posts within your blog. Placing your posts into proper categories also helps to theme your post pages and your links. As your pages gain PageRank, they then share it with other pages on your blog using good link reputation.
Spread your link love around and it will come back to you. Now, get out there and give it up!