Getting on the First Page of Google

website backlinking planAny small business would like its website to show up regularly on page one of the Google search results.

It’s quite feasible to achieve this if you know how.

The key tasks necessary are:

  • Choosing the right keywords
  • Using HTML tags correctly
  • Producing quality website content
  • Building lots of backlinks.

This article describes how to set up and implement a backlinking plan. All the website optimization tasks listed are important, but building back-links is one of the main ways to increase your website traffic.

When we talk about link building I am not referring to the HTML hyper-links that will take your visitors to other websites or to other pages of your own website. These links are advantageous to the sites you link to, but don’t do much to popularize your own site.

However, if other sites link to your website and do so in sufficient numbers this indicates to Google that your site is popular and so Google will rank it more highly in it’s search page listings.

These links are called backlinks, and if you want to increase your chances of being found on the web by the major search engines, you need to learn how to build them.

Back-links Have Many Dimensions

A backlink has six dimensions. They are:

  • Quantity
  • Quality
  • Value
  • Diversity
  • Velocity
  • Reciprocity

We’ll describe each of these dimensions in turn.

1. Back-link Quantity

Volume matters. As a general rule, the more backlinks you have, the better.

2. Back-link Quality

One of the most important parts of quality is the “Anchor Text”. The anchor text is the hyper-linked words that people click on to follow a link.

Google analyses this anchor text and uses it as one way of determining what keywords to use to index your page.

You should try and make your back-links look as natural as possible by using variations of your keywords as anchor text.

If you have too many identical anchor text phrases this could raise a red flag with the Google and the other search engines (i.e. they will assume you are trying to trick the system).

3. Back-link Value

There are three main factors that determine the value or “weight” of any given back-link. These are:

  • Page Rank
  • Page Location
  • The No-follow attribute.

Page Rank

This is an arbitrary score assigned to web-pages by Google.

The Google Page Rank (PR) ranges from 0 to 10. Ten is the best score, but it’s very rare.

In theory, Page Rank is divided up and passed on through all the links on a web-page. Each of the pages linked to is accorded a small portion of the total PR.  A page with a high PR and a small number of links passes on more PR than a page with a low PR.

Most experts say that you shouldn’t worry too much about PR. However, it’s still a useful way of determining how valuable a back-link from any given web-page is likely to be.

Location on Page

The location and context of a link on a page is the second factor that determines the value of a back-link.

For example, if a back-link comes from a page that consists of a large list of back-links, then your link value will be much lower than it would if it was situated in the main body of the linked article and was in context. This rule was introduced by Google to discourage so-called link-farms (sites that contained nothing but links to other sites).

It also makes a difference whether a link is part of the main content area of a web-page or whether it’s tucked away in a sidebar or footer (a common way of setting up back-links).

No-follow Attribute

The “no-follow” link attribute can be added to guest site links by the site owner. It tells Google to discount the link in question.

You may think that using no-follow is a rather mean thing to do. It was introduced to reduce link-spamming, particularly in blog-comments (i.e. using comments on a blog which contain a link back to the commentator’s site).

If the link in a blog comment doesn’t count, as it were, it’s no longer worthwhile for someone to send out lots of comment spam.

4. Link Diversity

It’s important that links going to a particular page come from many different sources.

A hundred back-links all coming from a single website are worth far less than a hundred back-links coming from a hundred different websites. Also, if those one-hundred different websites are all coming from the same IP Address (i.e. they are all hosted on the same server), then they are less valuable than if they were coming from many different IP Addresses.

5. Link Velocity

Another important concept is that of link velocity or link-acceleration.

If a site receives lots of back-links in a very short period of time it will usually rank very well for a while, but if no further back-links are added it will quickly drop in rank.

Of course, for your marketing efforts, you’ll want to get your sites to the top positions and you’ll want them to stay there. To ensure that this happens, make sure that you maintain a consistent rate of link-building. It’s better to build 10 links a day for 100 days than it is to build 1000 links in a single day.

6. Reciprocity

If two sites are exchanging links between themselves, Google considers this of less value than a one-way-link from one site to another.

This factor is one you shouldn’t worry about too much. Reciprocal links still count and the majority of the link-building techniques that you will use will produce only one-way-links.

Create the Perfect Back-link

To summarize all of the factors we just discussed, here’s what the perfect Backlink Battleplan should include backlinks which are:

  • In the anchor-text of your main keywords
  • Located in the main content part of a web page that has a high PR
  • Surrounded by text relevant to your site and on a page that covers roughly the same topics as your site
  • tagged ” no-follow”
  • Spread across multiple IP addresses
  • One-way links

Most of the back-links you will acquire or build will not fulfill all of the above criteria and that’s perfectly fine. We’re not suggesting that you should strive to get the perfect back-link every time.

The above list can be looked upon as a checklist, of sorts: The more of the criteria a back-link fulfills, the better.

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