Developing your links strategy is one of the most crucial elements of Internet marketing. It is a time-consuming task, but it is time well spent. Links are important for several reasons:
- Strategically placed, they can be a real traffic builder.
- Most popular search engines use link popularity and link relevancy as part of their ranking criteria. The more links to your site, the more popular it is, so the number of links you have to your site can significantly impact your placement with those search engines.
- The more links you have to your site, the more opportunities search engine spiders have to find you.
When you post a message to a social media group where you promote your Web site through your brilliant contributions and your signature file, you receive increased traffic while the message is current and is being read by participants in the social media group. As time passes, your message appears farther and farther down the list until it disappears, and then your traffic level returns to normal. The same goes for a promotional effort in a mail list. You can expect increased traffic for a short while after your mail list posting, but as soon as everyone has read your posting and visited your site, traffic levels return to normal.
This is not the same for links. Traffic from links does not go away as easily as other forms of Internet marketing. Links generally stay active for a long time. When a link to your site is placed on another Web site, you hope people see it and are enticed to click through to visit your site. As long as the site that hosts your link has new traffic, you continue to receive traffic through it. The beauty of links is that in three months that link will still be there and people will still be clicking through!
Links are very important because if you have links placed on a high-traffic Web site, they can turn into traffic builders for your own site. They also are important because they can have a major impact on your ranking in search engines, because all the major search engines use link popularity in their ranking criteria.
Once your links strategy is implemented and you begin to see an increase in the number of sites linking to your Web site, you will see your ranking in the search engines improve.