Linking is Queen
If content is king, then linking is queen that shares his throne. We have all heard about adding content to your site to give search engines fodder to consume. But secret to luring search engines is links to your site. Today's search engines look very carefully and critically at who is linking to you, and what it is that they are saying about you. A link from a leader in your industry carries a lot of weight and means that your site is important. Two links from industry leaders means your site is even more important. 100 links from random web sites, from industries you are not even related with, means almost nothing. Thus, getting links is only start; important thing is getting good links from quality web sites.
Why do links matter?
Since arrival of Google and their PageRank, search engines have put a lot of weight on links to a site. There used to be simple ways to get good rankings: Meta tags, titles, keyword density, etc… Today, things have become more complex, with search engines now using a very complicated algorithm that involves:
•links to your site, •what is written in those links, •who is linking to site that links to yours, •what are keyphrases used in those links, •what is quality of site that is linking to yours, •how many other links does that site have, •how many links out (and to what sites) does your site have, •and other such criteria.
To use a rather appetizing analogy, these new criteria are added to stew that is your site, along with quality and quantity of content. Left to simmer on worldwide web, this stew is then eaten up by search engines depending on how well your site matches aforementioned criteria. Put differently, king and queen must join together to turn your site into a number one result.
How do we get links?
It all starts with content. No one will link to you unless you offer quality information about a particular subject. If you are in real estate, you must offer information about area you sell. If someone wants to buy in your area, first s/he will want to learn about it, so you will need to have good resources about that area. The next step is to find new sites that would benefit from your site's information; new sites whose clients would potentially buy your real estate. For example, one of our clients (www.monlac.com) sells real estate in Laurentians area of Quebec. Their site has content on activities in Quebec and nearby Laurentian mountains. Thus, we will be soliciting links from web sites such as nearby water parks and ski hills, nearby towns, lake and boating associations, and local construction web sites to name just a few. To these web sites, not only will linking to www.monlac.com make their customers happier, but it is in their best interest that site sells real estate since it brings in more business for them.