Image courtesy of digitalart/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Image courtesy of digitalart/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

In general, creating links to your website is a good thing. It can help you boost your search engine rankings, drive traffic to your site and help you reach new markets. There are two different ways to get links to your site: earning them and building them.

The difference between these two strategies may seem subtle, but each can have a vastly different effect on your search engine optimisation campaign.

Link Earning

Link earning is accomplished when a brand earns a mention, and link back to its website, on another site or blog. This type of link can be very beneficial because it is often from a legitimate site that gets lots of traffic and may have a high page rank. It is a natural link, not forced and not on a website that is built for the sole purpose of boosting the rankings of another site.

Common link earning strategies include:

  • Guest blogging,
  • Social media posting,
  • Blog commenting,
  • Form participation,
  • News article and press release placement, and
  • Website or blog sponsorship.

Earned links are highly valued by search engines because they are seen as legitimate. These links can also be excellent tools to help you build your brand. As your business reaches new audiences and becomes associated with other sites, your brand will become more recognizable and you’ll have more channels you can use to share your message.

Link Building

Link building is still used in some instances, even though Google’s 2012 update devalued links created with these strategies. In essence, link building is the process of creating links back to your site in artificial ways. Some link building practices are:

  • Link buying,
  • Article marketing,
  • Exchanging links,
  • Using link networks, and
  • Submitting to article directories.

All of these strategies can help you gain links to your site, but these tactics are less natural. They are forced and therefore, search engine are beginning to ignore them. Most of these link-building strategies won’t get you very far with your marketing efforts either. They likely won’t help you reach your target market and won’t help you build a reputable brand.

These days, link earning strategies are bringing more success to SEO campaigns. Using these tactics can help you build relevant, natural links that search engines will favor and can help you build your online presence and brand.

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