The 2011 version of Rae Hoffman’s “Link Building with the Experts” contains some great insights for not just Internet marketers but business owners as well. I would highly recommend you head over there and give it a read.
Any time you can get ten of the top internet marketing experts in the world to give their independent views on any subject, then a great learning resource is bound to be created. The article provides some excellent ideas and serves as almost an educational resource for link building and building a successful brand online.
I’ve taken several quotes from each of these experts which I think give some really good insight into how links are perceived by search engines and the importance of building a well respected brand name online.
Here are a couple of my favourite quotes:
“If I was starting a site from scratch today I would probably make it less literal and more of a unique brand name.” – Aaron Wall
“Natural brands normally have link profiles that skew towards their brand over other anchor options.” – Dave Snyder
“Brands have been online for a long time, their link graphs are huge and people search for them by name. Add all of that plus the social and traditional media input and it makes sense these sites rank well.” – Debra Mastaler
“I place more of an emphasis on getting sites to mention the client’s name. Both in the anchor text, or near it.”- Justilien
“A true brand has a lot of anchor text confirming that they are indeed a brand.” – Rae Hoffman
“Typically these types of activities (link building) require a real world investment of time and relationship building.” – Rae Hoffman
What does this mean?
According to Eric Schmidt (Google CEO), brands are how you sort out the cesspool of false information on the Internet. By building links to your website that help to identify and grow your brand, your website will be far better off in the long run. A well known brand is more likely to:
- Rank higher as Google knows and trusts your brand and that visitors will have a good experience when they visit
- Be cited by news or industry websites or linked to by other people blogging or writing about your industry
- Stay in the search results after an algorithm update
- Be trusted by visitors
- Convert visitors into sales
Getting more links to your website
The number and quality of links pointing to your website is a major ranking factor in Google. There are a number of ways to get more links to your website and Aaron Wall, Rand Fishkin and Michael Grey offered a couple of great suggestions on how to do this:
“Bake link building and social signal promotions into their customer interactions. For example, Rand highlighted an invoice email with a “please link to us” message.” – Aaron Wall
“Are you sponsoring local events, or getting written about in newspapers or magazines?” – Greywolf
Link building remains one of the most important aspects of SEO in improving your website’s ranking and traffic. Having your brand mentioned in and next to links to your site is becoming more important as Google’s algorithm starts to favour bigger brands in the search results.
To create a well respected brand it’s vital to have your brand associated with other reputable websites, organisational bodies, customers and industry related sites. The more links you get from these types of websites then the greater the chance that your brand will be percieved as a valuable and well respected brand.
One of my favourite sayings is a good analogy for link building and types of links you should focus on getting:
“You can’t fly with the eagles, if you scratch with the turkeys”
If you’re getting links from low quality sites or paying for automatically generated links you’re putting yourself in that community (scratching with the turkeys). So if you want to fly with the eagles, associate your brand with other quality, reputable and relevant websites.