Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Types of Links..

There are two main categories of links: editorial links and acquired links.

a) Editorial links
Editorial links express the opinion of the editor. In this instance, it is the opinion person linking to you from their website. When checking who links to you, you might realise that there are a few businesses already linking to your site. These websites have decided to reference your content because they find it informative and trust that making it accessible to their users will enhance their online experience.

Editorial links take time to get because they are earned as a reward for providing good, citation-worthy content. They are the links that search engines will favour and therefore have the biggest link value.

b) Acquired links
In this category fall all the other links (paid or unpaid). Getting these links necessitate either:
  • Making contact with another organisation to entice them to link to you. For instance, as the website owner you establish contact with other organisations to convince them that your content is worthy enough to be linked to.

  • Self creation - For example, you have created links back to your website by participating in online discussion forums or by leaving comments on Blogs.

  • Reciprocal links, also known as link exchange - “Link to me and I will link to you”. Reciprocal links are links to another website placed on your site in exchange for links back to your site from theirs. Search engines condemn this practice if both sites have nothing relevant in common. However, if you have identified a relevant website and that you both share informative and complementary content, reciprocal links are a good opportunity as both your readers and search engines will be pleased.
Acquired links have less search engine value than editorial links because they bypass the feeling of trust that editorial links have. For instance, not all acquired links (especially those acquired by leaving comments on blogs) will be followed by search engines; the website where the link originates from might have used special HTML commands to prevent search engines from following the links and improving your website’s search engine placements.

These HTML commands are known as “nofollow” attributes. Even though some links might not pass search engine value, they are still valuable to readers who might follow them and contact you if they find your content informative and useful.

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