Xpirt Design’s Link Building Strategy 101: Low budget link building

In this article, I will be talking about my link building strategy that I’ve implemented to build Google page rank for my site. These are proven methods as of September 24th, 2008. I will not be talking about paid link exchanges because 1) It is against Google policy, 2) This article is for site owners that are on a tight budget.

I have a new website that I am trying to promote, like many of you, and we all know that Google and Yahoo relies heavily on other websites linking to your website in order to calculate page rank.

ANCHOR TEXT: Very important!

Before we go on, I want to explain the importance of your keyword in the anchor text of your links. The anchor text is the actual text that the view can see when click on a link. This text should have your target keyword or key phrase that you are attempting to optimize your site for. When submitting any link, you should always use keywords in the anchor text of that link. Some exceptions are DMOZ and any other directory or link exchange site that says otherwise. Also, it is important to mix up your anchor text by adding other words like “best” or “cheap” or whatever you choose. The reason is that Google has whats called a “link trap.” Google actually will penalize your site if it thinks that you are only optimizing for a certain keyword or key phrase. Mixing up the anchor text passes this “link trap” while still achieving the goals of optimizing for a certain key phrase.

There are many different ways to get more links to your site. I will showing you how to get good one-way links as well as good reciprocal link. Also, I will be explaining the best practices in link building so you don’t end up getting penalized by Google. But first, lets talk about submitting your site into the popular link directories.

Link Directories:

The most popular link directories are DMOZ.com and the Yahoo Directory. DMOZ is free but it takes forever for them to add your link (several months in most cases). Yahoo Directory is $300 bucks per year. You should definitely submit your site to DMOZ, but be careful with your site descriptions. They are very strict on their criteria. If you do have the money, the Yahoo Directory is a great candidate as well.

So how do you find more free link directories?

SEARCH for them! The problem with this is that you have no way of keeping track of the directories who added you or not (in an efficient way at least). Which brings me to my next point…

How can we keep track of which directories we’ve submitted to? What anchor text did we use for the directory? What date did we submit on? How can we check to see if our link was added?

Here is a website that has these tools to keep track of who, what, where, and when. http://www.onewaytextlink.com/

This is a great site to start with. Keep in mind that the FREE one-way links are of most importance to us right now. So go ahead, go through that whole list of free one way link directories and submit your link with your mixed up anchor texts.

Reciprocal Link Exchanges:

Another way to get quality links is reciprocal linking. A faster and more productive way in doing this is to sign up for a good link exchanging program like http://link2me.com. Its free and you can monitor which sites have added your link, the page rank of those sites, and so on..

There is a lot of controversy over reciprocal links however. Some people say these links don’t count, some people say they do count. One thing is for sure…Reciprocal links should only be exchanged with other sites that are relevant to your site. If I have a website design site, then I would want to exchange my link with another web design site. With that said, you should also watch out for sites that have been banned or penalized by Google. If you link to a site that has been banned or penalized, you will be penalized as well. The way to check this is to download the Google Toolbar and use the page rank option. This shows you the page rank of any site you go to. If the toolbar is all grey on the homepage of a site, it is because either the site is only a couple of weeks old, or the site has been banned. You can also check by going to Google Search and typing in “site:” and then the url of the site you are checking. If you are checking my site, you would type “site:xpirtdesign.com”

So, go to link2me.com and sign up for free. Start your link exchanging with relevant sites and start building those links.

Get links from your competitors’ link partners:

My favorite way to find link partners is to use my COMPETITORS link partners. There is a reason why your competitor ranks higher in the search engines. If you have already done the on-page SEO for your site, the next step is to find your competitors and do a link exchange with the sites that are currently linking to them!

Go to Google, get the URL of the competitors homepage. Type in Google Search “link:url” If you were to find the websites that are linking to me, you would type “link:xpirtdesign.com”

Go down the list of sites, write an email to eat site owner explaining that you are a fairly new site and you would like to participate in a link exchange. You should write your email in a way that would convince the site owner to exchange links with you. Personalize each email with their URL or name.

Try to focus on getting reciprocal links from your competitors link partners who have page rank on the actual link pages, or the page where they will be putting your link on. The more back linksyou have on pages with page rank, the higher rank you will get from Google in return.

Also when doing reciprocal links, you should have criteria as well.

Check for a “nofollow” attribute within the HTML coding either in their meta tags, or on the links themselves. You do not want to exchange links with sites that do not give you any page rank love. Avoid sites with the nofollow attributes.

Only trade links with other sites that are relevant to yours unless that other site has a good page rank on their link pages.

What are some things that you should do in order to get sites to agree to a link exchange?

-Get some page rank on your link pages.

-Do not use nofollow attributes on your reciprocal links or pages.

-Do not add more then 30 links to each link page.

Trade links with your competitors themselves:

Another great way to find good relevant links is to exchange links with your competitors themselves. Email them to see if they are interested, but I would use a different anchor text so they won’t be worried about helping their competitors. You can use a secondary key phrase that you are optimizing for to achieve this goal.

This concludes “Link Building Strategies 101 – Low Budget.” Please stay tuned for more great articles from Xpirt Design!

Do you not have the time or resources to start your link building campaign? Do you need professional search engine optimization services?

XPIRT DESIGN CAN HELP! We do search engine optimization, web design, and link building for a living. We can get your site that jump-start that it needs to start bringing in that traffic you deserve. Check out these links to find out more!

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