Tips For Link Buying Part 3

    August 10, 2004

In the first two articles concerning link buying, we discussed advice that was given by Greg Boser of WebGuerilla and Michael Palka of Ask Jeeves. The response to these articles has been very good, with a great deal of feedback appearing on iEntry’s forum. Today, I’ll discuss the advice given by Matt Cutts of Google.

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Matt, much like Greg and Michael, stressed the concept of having relevant links pointing to your site and its content. His thinking follows along the lines of the higher the quality of the backlink, the better. When Matt speaks about quality, he is speaking about the relevance of the link and the type of site it is coming from.

Is the link generating from a group that practices gray/black SEO habits? Does the site that is linking to you have a reason for doing so, other than backlink purposes? These are things that should be considered when attempting a link building campaign.

Matt said you should ask yourself why people would want to link to your site. What content are you offering that causes you to stand out? Keeping this in mind, Matt suggests that your site’s content should offer a unique reason for people to link to.

This basically boils down to making your content valuable enough so that other relevancy-related sites will want to link to it. Google values relevant links.

In case you are unsure what kind of content to offer, Matt states that something informative is always good. He suggests offering visitors white pages that contain links back to your site. He also mentions creating newsletters. Like all things devoted to link building, ensure any newsletter that is mailed out contains links back to the page that features the information you are featuring in the mailing. An archive that keeps an updated list of these newsletters can be helpful as well.

Matt’s approach to link building was more of a philosophical one than straight tips and tricks. However, when taken with the advice that appeared in the previous link building articles, you have a fairly comprehensive list of ideas to keep in mind when designing a website, not just attempting to build links.

Making your content valuable enough to be linked to seems to be the emphasis of all speakers well, that and link relevancy. Of course, the first part is a little easier to control than the second. The thinking seems to be: if you build it (quality content), they will come (links pointing to your site).

Though he was philosophical about how to build links, Matt was specific on things to AVOID when link building. One of the first things he said while speaking on what to avoid was controlling whom YOU link to. Make sure that that any site you are linking to is relevant, quality site. Again, no shady SEO users should appear. He also stated another obvious point: avoid hidden links. Be sure and place your links where site visitors can find them.

Matt also suggests avoiding links coming from or pointing to guest books. These are notorious havens for spammers. He did not say whether or not Google discounted these links, but because he warned about them, you can guess that they don’t give much relevance to these types of links.

He also mentioned to avoid buying anything that will artificially boost PageRank. Reading Google’s Information for Webmasters Page discusses why this is something that should be avoided: “Linking schemes do not increase a given site’s PageRank, and will often do a site more harm than good. Many sites that advertise link-sharing programs not only offer little value, but will distribute your email address without your permission, resulting in an increased volume of unwanted mail to you.”

Another area that should be avoided is interlinking of sites within your own domain. Google can perceive interlinking between domains, because they are on the same IP, as link spam, and this is an action that they can and will penalize.

This brings a close to our 3 part series on tips and advice for link building. Hopefully, our faithful readers got some valuable information from these articles. Please feel free to continue the discussion, or offer any advice you may have.

Chris Richardson is a search engine writer and editor for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest search news.