SEM: Make the Right Connections
The flip side to these questions is: Why would you link to another site? What value does it provide your visitors? If you link to a site, your visitors then follow that link and the page they arrive at is one they dislike and distrust, that reflects on you and your site.
When you think about linking, consider it from the perspective of choosing a business partner or a trusted confidant. Don’t be afraid of sending an e-mail or making a phone call to learn more about the people behind the site you may want to link to. Look around the prospective site and see if you can learn more about it. Check for Better Business Bureau or Chamber of Commerce logos, believable customer testimonials complete with contact information, verifiable names and street addresses, or other evidence that offers credibility.
You shouldn’t link to a site just because you want it to then point a link back to your site. Instead, focus on adding links to your site that your visitors would want to use. And consider ways to make your site more attractive to others who might bookmark it or link to it.
Some strategies for attracting links to your site:
1. Employ rich, relevant content. Good content will attract bookmarks, links and word-of-mouth references. Last year, a guidebook for Web site quality reviewers employed by Google was leaked to the public. One of the things it discussed was the difference between “thin” affiliates and “thick” affiliates. A thin affiliate is one that puts a lot of keywords on pages, links to an affiliate site and doesn’t provide value beyond those links. A thick affiliate adds interesting content and information worth visiting on its site, instead of just acting as a conduit to the site it’s an affiliate for. Make your site thick.