Alternatives to Reciprocal linking, selling Sea Shells on the sea shore??!?
While reading the blog over at SEOmoz, I came across the great post called Hands on Tips for Link Building. In the blog, Paddy Moogan talks various tips on finding sites to get links from, which is a great post. But the one part that caught me attention was the alternatives to reciprocal links. In the post, he talks about how you can try offering links back to people you are trying to get a link from in the form of a link in an e-mail list or a micro site you run.
We all know the score when trying to build backlinks, you find a great site that would be perfect for your client, you shoot them an e-mail. The response is that they usually want some form of payment or want a reciprocal link back. While not completely bad if both your sites are related in theme, a reciprocal link isn’t as powerful as a good old one way link.
So what other alternatives are there that you could barter with when requesting a link? If you have a lot of Twitter Followers or Facebook fans, you could offer a plug through one of those sites. If you host your own industry Podcast, you could again give a shout out to your new friend. These both obviously rely on you being fairly popular or influential in the first place. Paddy’s idea of offering a link on an alternative site is a great one, especially if it is one you have control of. Blog’s are great as you could write a small review for the person in exchange for your back link. This may seem hard work in some cases, but next time you are requesting a link and they ask for a reciprocal link or payment, why not suggest an alternative pay back for the link.
Over at Matt Cutt’s blog there is a new handy tip about getting some free links. Well these aren’t technically new links but sorting out dead links. You maybe asking how you find these broken links? Well through webmaster central, that’s how. Matt goes into more detail, but the gist of it is, that you use the diagnosis section of webmaster tools to find out who is linking to dead pages or pages that never existed. Then you can e-mail these websites and ask them to change the link to an active page. What a simple yet great link building idea.
This may seem an obvious technique, but while searching for a client in the google serps I had a brain wave. A Lot of the results below the clients website will be sites talking about them and linking to their site. There’s a good chance that if they have not been gained by the SEO team, that they will be using wasteful anchor text like “click here” and the company’s name. So why not contact these websites and ask them to modify the anchor text to include your targeted keywords. One of the links I found in 3rd position after two listings from my client was a monster.co.uk profile page that was PR3 and linked to our site with the dreaded “click here”. So we will now look into getting this changed. Hopefully this technique will help you convert some existing links into SEO friendly links.
There is a common belief that when you check Google backlinks using info:domain Google is showing all the links that influence its rankings. Unfortunately not the Google backlink checker is not a SEO Tool and it does not display all links that weight its algothrithm.
Please see below:
1: The Google backlink check is not an SEO tool.
2: The backlink search does not represent the sum total of all links that Google knows about your site.
3: The backlinks shown do not represent links that are counting as part of your backlinks.
4: Just because it shows up in the backlink search does not mean Google is using it for your ranking.
5: Just because a backlink is missing does not mean Google is unaware of it
6: Just because a backlink is missing does not mean Google is not counting it for ranking purposes.