Inbound links are links from other websites that point to a page on your blog. Getting them is important because Google uses Inbound links to rank your website. The higher Google ranks your website, the more likely you are to be listed in its first page search results.
Over time, if your blog has unique information, it will get inbound links without any work on your part. This is an added bonus, but if you don’t want to take a wait and see approach to inbound linking, here are some tips to help build them now:
- Use social bookmarking: there are literally hundreds of social bookmarking web sites out there that allow you to bookmark and share your online content. Each time you submit a link to a social bookmarking site, it counts as an inbound link to your site. To find social bookmarking sites to use, go to ShareThis.com and install their free tool.
- Join forums: there are forums on the internet for almost every different industry or vertical market imaginable. Do some keyword searches for the word forum combined with the industries or fields most relevant to your blog. Sign up for these forums and introduce yourself (include a link to you blog). Once you have a target list of forums relevant to your blog, follow them and post useful, informative comments with backlinks to your blog.
- Comment on blogs: develop a list of blogs that have content similar to your blog and post useful, informative comments with backlinks to your site.
- Submit to directories: there are literally thousands of directories available on the internet. Do searches for directories combined with industry-specific terms to develop a target list. Make sure to submit to the three largest, which are: ODP (dmoz.org), Yahoo Directory (dir.yahoo.com) and Google Directory. (http://directory.google.com/)
Note – don’t submit your blog to directories that require a reciprocal link. Google frowns upon link exchange and your Google pagerank will suffer as a result.
- Write content for publication: write articles with backlinks to your blog and then submit these articles for publication to sites focused on your blog’s industry. Once an article is published, you’ll have an inbound link to your site. If you can’t find a site that will take your article, use an article submission site like Ezine.com. With sites like Ezine, every time someone else republishes your article, you’ll gain an additional link back to your blog.
Note – don’t republish content from your blog on Article submission sites as Google frowns upon duplicate content. Keep your blog’s content original and only submit articles that you don’t intend to publish on your own blog.
- Post press releases: is you blog newsworthy? if so, send out press releases with backlinks in them to sites like Prweb.com,Prnewswire.com, Prnewsnow.com and Sourcewire.com. Each press release will give you additional backlink to your blog.
- Pay for links: depending on your business model, it may be worthwhile to pay for quality, one way links to your website.
- Request links: create a list of sites that have content relevant to your blog and simply send them an e-mail. One e-mail I’ve been using for years with positive results says:
“I recently visited your website and found it to provide valuable information on ____________. I noticed that you have a resource section on your site for ___________ and I think my website would be a great fit. My URL is ________________. Please contact me if you need any further information about my site for inclusion in your resource directory.
Keep up the great work!
One final note on inbound links: When posting comments and publishing content with backlinks, it is important to use keywords in your anchor text. If your blog is focused on ‘dog grooming’ you want to use the word dog grooming in the links that point to your blog. Google looks at anchor text from other sites to determine what your site is about. If one hundred websites point to yours with the anchor text ‘dog grooming’ Google will most likely place your blog prominently in the search results for those keywords.
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