Links from sites that are highly trusted as a good source of genuine material or offers, can add to your website’s trust & credibility rating in Google search. Some directories also still contribute positively to your rank, but while searches on directory sites are becoming less common, they can still generate referrals and extra search results listings.
- Can improve your organic ranking.
- Makes your site look more popular, important or trusted.
- Can increase the change of referrals.
Backlinks Signal Popularity or Importance
Linking to your site from other websites is generally seen as a positive, but “link swapping” or reciprocal linking is now no longer of any value. External inbound links really need to come from places that link to you because they want to, or because there’s some benefit for their visitors to follow the links. Inbound links tell Search Engines that your page content must be worth viewing.
Inbound links from sites that have equal or better Search Engine authority or trust ratings will benefit your ranking, whereas inbound links from un-trusted sites might do the opposite.
There’s now a fine line between great SEO back-links versus spammy back-links. Figuring out the difference takes a fair bit of skill and analysis. In 2012 Google released a programe called ‘Penguin’. Since then, they have also run updates on the programme on semi-regular basis. This algorithm was design to detect and eliminate as much of the undeserved ranking as possible for sites that were using back-linking techniques to artificially increase the website’s apparent status. In other words, back-linking came under intense scrutiny. Those sites that had many links but not much content or quality to offer its visitors lost rank immediately.
Keyword Research How-To
Getting inbound links is one of the most important SEO steps that you should achieve as soon as possible, especially if your website is brand new.
There are many trusted web directories with which you can get free listings. We recommend places like Finda, Yellow Pages, Gopher etc. These tend to be well trusted sites and have relatively authoritative content. What that means is that if your site is also listed and referred to on their site, that has a positive influence on whether or not your site is seen as trusted and authoritative. Most directories also have paid listings you can buy. There is however NO SEO value difference between a free listing or a paid listing. The only plus for paid listings is a possible increase in referrals from those sites. Weigh up the cost of the paid listing against the referral value before considering getting a paid listing.
When you have a new website, search engines will not know you are there. The idea of “build it and they will come” simply doesn’t work on the web. If no links exist on the internet to your website, then search engine robots and spiders can’t find their way to you either. Search engines cannot “crawl” a website that can’t be connected to from anywhere. There is no “magic” that says “hello, here’s my website, come and visit”. Everyone literally needs an invitation first.
If your website is listed on other websites that are often crawled (like Yellow Pages online) then your website is more likely to get crawled and indexed quickly.
The more inbound links you have, search engines will count these as positive “votes” for your website, assuming the website that is linking to you is also trusted.
Getting inbound links clearly can’t be done on your site. You have to go on other people’s sites (like Finda) and register, create the listing and the link to your site.
Social media is another great way of getting lots of links, and also any kind of social network in which your www address is published for all to access.
Things to Note
Watch out! Getting hundreds of links from un-trusted sites or “link farms” is not good. They count as a “vote” for your site, but search engine technology is soon catching up to people using strategies like link farming to get lots of inbound links just to boost their statistic.
You are better off with 20 links from good sites than 100 links from bad ones.
Reciprocal linking also offers no SEO value. If you “swap” links with a friend or affiliate’s website, neither of your sites will gain SEO value for that, other than if you offered each other’s visitors some positive value for following that link, and that resulting in making more money somehow.
When creating directory references to your website, make sure that all the information on those directories match the details on your website, and each other. If not, search engines can see those references as being for different businesses and they then become “competitors” in the ranking stakes, not allies. Also note that 0800 phone numbers (or 0508 and cell phones) are not seen as “regional” meaning, they are not linked to a place in NZ. This can be negative for SEO in terms of listings that compete and/or listings that need to appeal to local searches, so we can suggest ways to resolve this for you.
Like internal linking, links that go to your site benefit from starting off in text that is keyword rich, meaning, the link to your site could be in text that says “Spa Pool Installer” if your site offers spa pool installation, instead of the link being your www address as the linked text. For most web directories, you can’t choose the linked text, but it’s something to keep in mind for other referrers to your site.