Link building is not a straightforward activity. The purchasing of links has been categorised as an unethical practice by Google and this means that links have to be acquired in a patient manner. This gradualist approach is difficult for individual site owners to proceed with unless they have specialist help. Some site owners have little idea of how to improve what is called their link profile. Considering the attraction of high-quality inbound links is a tricky thing to do well, it makes sense for SEO firms to put some resources into getting it right during the course of an evolving SEO campaign.
When it comes to the finer points of link building it may be instructive to categorise the sites from which links can be sought. It is then possible to comment on the desirability of these links and focus on appropriate tactics. There are at least four significant link categories and they have been listed here in line with their importance or value, with the most important ones featured first and the least valuable ones last:
- There are authority sites in most sectors of economic activity. These sites are attended by large audiences of users and are frequently a ‘first port of call’ for those seeking industry news and interesting comment. They can be very difficult to get links from, so perseverance may be the order of the day. However, some authority sites encourage guest blogging and this means that easier opportunities may be available.
- Other sites are not approaching authority status but are nevertheless situated in the relevant economic sector. This means that these sites can be serious targets for an evolving campaign to obtain more and better quality links. Working hard to get these links is often rewarding, although it is never easy. One thing which can be thought about in this area is hosting competitions. Another strategy is to make the site that is seeking inbound links such high quality that it projects a very favorable external impression.
- Then there are links connected with directories. Some directories are of poor quality and should be avoided whereas other directories are not so potentially detrimental to the prospects of a site. This means that there is considerable value in checking out the integrity and relevance of the directory being looked at.
- Links associated with a spammy site are simply bad news. This means that there can be a great deal to lose by mixing with the bad company online. The search engines will evaluate a site in a negative fashion simply because it keeps bad company. If adequate measures are not taken to get links by the correct methods there can be problems.