Since my last few posts have been mostly about what NOT to do when building links, how about if we take some time for some actual Web link building tips and advice...?


1) Did you know there are at least ten different ways you can potentially obtain links from Yahoo? Have a look here to see what I mean. To this list add Yahoo Picks of the Week and Yahoo News Full Coverage, both of which can mean a new link for you but...please only do this if it truly makes sense for your site. There's plenty of ways into Google as well. More on that next time.
2) You can obtain links for individual content elements on your site. What is a content element? Here are a few examples.
Do you have a blog and/or RSS feed? Of course you do. Go get your links...
http://www.masternewmedia.org/rss/top55/
You're podcasting? Excellent. Seek links here...
http://www.podcasting-tools.com/submit-podcasts.htm
You have content just for kids? Roll up your sleeves and ask for links from the sites listed here...
http://searchenginewatch.com/links/article.php/2156191
Sweepstakes? Did you say sweepstakes? Have at it...
http://contests.about.com/library/blsweepslist.htm
You have some awesome Flash apps? Seek your props...
http://www.thefwa.com
A bunch of boring White Papers? Not boring to these folks. Submit away...
http://www.ebizq.net/white_papers/submit.html
http://www.webbuyersguide.com/buyers_guide/whitepaper.asp
Good old fashion Web Cam of your back yard? Surely not...
http://www.camcentral.com/
The key here is to recognize your site is the sum of its parts. And often those parts can be linkworthy. See beyond your homepage URL.
3) You can simplify the process of having others link to your blog posts by using this nifty social bookmark link creation tool. It's free. http://www.toprankresults.com/tools/social-bookmark.php
4) People can link to your site in many ways. The most common way is by using your company name, like this
IBM Corporation
The part of the link that is clickable is called the Anchor Text. Many people feel that anchor text comprised of keywords helps their search engine rankings. Like this.
IBM Securty Products
So far, so good. But then everyone goes overbvoard and asks 5,000 other sites to link to them using the identical anchor text. Silly. All this does is end up creating an unnatural inbound linking universe for your site. And you could get flagged for it. Better approach: Create a really detailed Linking to Us page. (http://www.healthfinder.gov/aboutus/linking.asp).
Side note: Have a look at who ranks first for the search term "click here". Makes perfect sense to me.
Eric Ward
http://www.ericward.com

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
image of Eric Ward

Eric founded the Web's very first online publicity and linking services, NetPOST and URLwire, in 1994. Eric's expertise is in helping companies generate links, publicity and buzz for their Web content. A hands-on practitioner, Eric also offers training and seminars that teach companies how to do it in-house. His client list is a who's who of online brands, from Amazon.com to PBS.org.

Eric has written for for ClickZ and Ad Age, and he won the 1995 Tenagra Award For Internet Marketing Excellence. In 1997, he was named one of the Web's 100 most influential people by Websight magazine. A well-known speaker at the major industry trade shows, Eric will soon publish The Ward Report, a monthly "how-to" newsletter on the art of link building and publicity for Web content, with commentary on the newest trends and practices.

A native of northern New Jersey, Eric has lived in Knoxville, Tennessee since graduating from the University of TN. Eric's wife Melissa and toddler Noah say "bye daddy geek" every day when he leaves for work.

Eric can be reached at eric@ericward.com