In working with business owners over the years, we have often seen that links are underappreciated when it comes to improving the visibility, usability, and effectiveness of a website. New clients will come to us because they want a fresh layout, better pay-per-click ads, or a stronger social presence. But, rarely do they ask for help with a smart linking strategy.
The exception comes when we meet a business owner who understands how important links are to search engine optimization. But even then, they may not realize just how much links matter, or the best ways to deploy them.
Today, we want to help out our clients and readers by sharing four simple ways you can improve your website using different kinds of links…
- Use High Quality Inbound Links to Gain Traffic and Search Visibility
It used to be the case that having any links pointing to your website would boost your search engine position. But, Google caught on to the fact that marketers were gaming the system and changed their algorithm. Now, only links from sources with a high page rank have any value. However, those also tend to be the kinds of sites that can actually send visitors your way, too. Just be sure the linking site is relevant to your business or industry.
- Internal Links Help With Usability and SEO
Many marketers think internal links are simply for navigation bars and other menus. However, using text links that take visitors from one page, topic, or blog post to the other can be very valuable. For one thing, they tell Google’s search spiders what the linked-to content is about. And for another, they can help potential customers to find the information or resources they are looking for. That makes your site easier to navigate, and a much more useful resource.
- Local and Industry Links Can be Used to Corroborate Contact Details
There are probably at least a dozen local review sites your business could be listed on, not to mention numerous different industry directories. Adding your business to them could generate relevant links that help your search position marginally. More importantly, though, those directory listings can be used to corroborate contact details like your company’s telephone number and address. The more of these there are to be found online, the easier it is for Google to include your company in its local search listings.
- Outbound Links Give Your Website Credibility and Relevance
Most business owners never think of adding outbound links to their websites, but they should. They don’t give you the search engine optimization benefits that inbound links do, but outbound links can be used to give citations or back up facts and statistics. In other words, you can show readers the proof of what you’re saying. That makes your website more credible, and could persuade buyers to give you more trust. If that could help you generate more conversions, wouldn’t it be worth it?
The days of using link farms to improve your search engine positioning are long gone; Google doesn’t give you any credit for inbound links that aren’t relevant and high-quality anymore (in fact, using these tactics could actually get you blacklisted). But, that doesn’t mean links don’t still have their uses. Give these four types a try, and you might not only see more visitors coming to your website, but gain more conversions as a result.
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About Glenn Brooks
Glenn Brooks is the founder of WebWize, Inc. WebWize has provided web design, development, hosting, SEO and email services since 1994. Glenn graduated from SWTSU with a degree in Commercial Art and worked in the advertising, marketing, and printing industries for 18 years before starting WebWize.