Google Proof Your Site with Links

by : John Gergye

Let me try reading your mind. You're thinking, 'What? Google proof my site with links? I thought links helped Google rank my pages higher?'

And you're absolutely right. They do.

But links do something else. They give you a backup source of traffic for those days, weeks, or months when Google spasms out. Something content alone can't do.

So while content and on-page optimization count, to me links are what separates the men from the boys.

Now links come in three flavors:

  • Directory Links
  • Reciprocal Links
  • One Way Links

Let's briefly cover each.

====> Directory Links

Unlike some, I'm not especially enamoured with directory links. For me their role has been to serve as the initial link(s) for a site so Google can find it. Other than that I find them more trouble than they're worth. Unless they're specifically targeted to your niche.

Still if you gotta have some let's round up the usual free or 'for fee' suspects:

Simply pony up some cash for express review and you can get yourself decent directory links in no time.

====> Reciprocal Links

Reciprocal links cost you nothing but time. They're pretty much forever. And if your site is link worthy, that is has decent content and pagerank (PR), you should have no trouble getting at least a third of those you approach to swap links with you.

Even better each link back to your site has the potential to deliver up a heapin’ helpin’ of

  • PR
  • Traffic
  • Link reputation (from the link text)

Since they're there for the asking, make sure you're spending a couple hours a week soliciting link trades.

====> One Way Links

Some feel one way links carry more ranking firepower. I'm not so sure. But there are many ways to get one way links. My two favorites? Articles and rented links.

Article Links

I know every one and his dead dog touts article marketing as a way to gain exposure, links and presumably traffic. But they really do work. Maybe not overnight. But if you hang in there you'll find you can build your online reputation and create a steady stream of traffic to your site too.

Yet their real fire power is unleashed if they appear in ezines read by your prospects.

Also when I'm on the prowl for link partners, I keep my eyes open for anything that would suggest the site posts guest articles. When I find one, I fire off the link swap request and submit an article. Hey, a two-fer!

Now if you don't have the skill or inclination to write articles you can have them ghost written. Or if you want a turn key solution complete with a guarantee of 20 inbound links, you can have the articles written and promoted for you by .

Rented Links

Notice the choice of terms. I prefer to look at links I pay for, ostensibly as 'advertising' (wink wink), as rented links. Rented since they aren't forever unless you choose them to be a permanent part of your marketing plan.

Not only that, they are a great way to jumpstart the PR of a newer site. Making it infinitely easier to land reciprocal links. Which once accomplished frees you to jettison the rented ones!

Two ways you can go. You can use a link broker:

Somewhat safer in that you have someone else besides the webmaster to look to if something goes awry.

Yet if you're more adventuresome and willing to dig a bit you may discover some very cost effective text links.

For example this week in just 10 minutes I found a PR 5 site selling text link advertising for $15 a month. I jumped on that like a duck on a wounded June bug. Also found a site with PR 7 links for just $75 a month. Again, I didn't think twice about signing up for that bargain either.

Just remember when it comes to buying links 'you pays your money you takes your chance'. One friend confided he had spent $300/month on links and the promised PR 7 never materialized once PR updated. I invested less but from what I can see also got squat in the PR department too with a recent rental for a newer site.

Still when it works out rented links can have an almost magical affect on your rankings.

Anyway there you go. Three ways to get links that when coupled with optimized content can make your site an unstoppable traffic magnet. While making it Google proof to boot.

Copyright 2004 John Gergye