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Link Development - Building Links

One of the most important factors that search engines use for determine the importance of a website or webpage is the number and quality of links that lead to that page or site. A correct link building strategy can promote or demote a site, and therefore this action should be performed with much care. In this article we try to assist you with building an effective action plan for building links and avoiding common traps that inexperienced site owners fall into.

Links Equation

When constructing a link building strategy, we take into account several factors that are under the site owner's control, and other factors that are controlled by search engines. If a certain factor exceeds a certain threshold, the equation becomes unbalanced, and this may cause the site to be filtered or result in a penalty that the search engines activate in order to restore that balance. Therefore, a correct links building strategy should maintain all factors within the "green" range, and to maximize the value of the total equation.

It is enough that one variable in the equation is unbalanced (above or below the "green" zone), for the site's rating to be severely harmed in search engines results. Identification of the problematic variable is very important for the restoration of the equation's balance.

It is important to mention that this equation is not homogenous for all sorts of websites: a website that operates in a specific market niche will fall under a different equation than a big website that relates to a wide range of topics. It doesn't make sense that a Ra'anana kindergarten website will have hundreds of thousands incoming links from mega-sites around the world.

Equation Balancing Examples

If all incoming links of a certain website originate from a small number of IP numbers (meaning that these incoming links come from sites that are located on the same server), then in order to balance the equation you can lower the number of links or have new links from websites that are not located on the same "IP environment". On the other hand, if each link on your website is from a different IP, then to balance the equation, you should add several site wide links (many links from the same website).

If most of the links are reciprocal links (I link to you and you link to me), then you should add some one way links (OWL), and remove some of the reciprocal links.

If all of the links lead to the homepage, you should have more links that lead to internal pages on your site.

This is only a small number of examples for variables in the links equation. Understanding the state of your website's links equation will allow you to define which links you need in each stage in order to balance and maximize the equation.

Anchor Text

One of the most important components of a link is the anchor text, namely, the text that is clicked in order to reach the link's target. It is very important to keep the anchor text of incoming links as relevant as possible. On the other hand, if the anchor text on all incoming links is identical, you should initiate diversification of the anchor text by adding words and using synonyms.

For example, if my website's topic is site promotion, I can use various text combinations in my links:

  • Websites promotion
  • Professional site promotion
  • SEO
  • Websites marketing
  • Internet marketing

The more the site achieves high placements in search results, so will its placement improve with regards to searches performed for the main key phrases.

Understanding the Links Equation Variables

Understanding the value and weight search engines assign to each factor is essential in achieving high placement in search engines results. The goal of constructing a balanced equation is to simulate a natural growth of incoming links on a website over time. You can understand the structure of the equation that is relevant to your type of a website by analyzing the incoming links to major competing websites.

Following are some of the most important equation factors:

  • One way link vs. a reciprocal link
  • Authority level of the linking site
  • Link location (inside body text, at the top, side or bottom of the page)
  • Anchor text
  • Relevance level of the linking site
  • Relevance level of the linking page
  • Number of other links on the page containing the link to your site
  • Number of incoming links from the same site
  • Number of incoming links from the same IP number

At the top of the scale is a one way link from an authoritative website that is located inside the body text of a high relevance page, with anchor text that contains important keywords.

At the bottom of the scale is a reciprocal link from a non-authoritative site, located at the bottom of the page and containing irrelevant anchor text.

A customer that couldn't find you is your competitor's customer..

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