How can you build links without triggering Google's wrath?
After being hit by the Google Penguin, a Google algorithm update aimed at decreasing search engine rankings of websites with unnatural links pointing to their sites, a lot of people have become totally terrified of links. It has even come to the point where they would actually try to remove links from legitimate sites to avoid being penalized by Google. Does this mean that Google consider link building illegal and should therefore be avoided at all costs?
Well, contrary to what most people may think, Google does not think that link building is pure evil. In fact, Matt Cutts, head of the Webspam team at Google, even said that not all link building is bad. However, trying to manipulate search engine rankings by building unnatural links is not considered ethical in any way.
Building Links the Right Way
Ideally, site owners should create valuable content that makes people want to share it with others. You can easily do this by building a strong social media presence on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ and by creating great content that your audience would love to share with their own networks.
To generate high quality links that Google approves of, here are some tips that you may want to consider.
- Focus on quality. Rather than buying a backlink package for the price of a Big Mac and fries, focus on acquiring quality links instead. You are merely asking for trouble if you suddenly decide to buy links in an effort to improve your search engine rankings. A sudden spike in links pointing back to your site which is not a result of a content that has gone viral can raise a red flag and trigger a manual review of your site.
- Be wary of exchanging links. There is really nothing wrong with exchanging links, if you are doing it for all the right reasons. However, if you are exchanging links with unrelated websites or participating in other spammy methods to gain backlinks, then you may be putting yourself and your business website in jeopardy.
- Don't spam. Using automated tools to post thousands of spammy comments to blogs and posting spammy posts in forums will not do you any good. However, blog commenting and posting in related forums can help you build a great relationship with other webmasters and forum owners and showcase your expertise in your niche.
- Use guest blogging correctly. When done right, guest blogging can help you build your own following while picking up some good backlinks along the way. You really have a lot to gain by doing this so you should make an effort to put your absolute best in every guest blog you write and find relevant guest blogging opportunities.
As mentioned earlier, link building is not illegal but don't try to manipulate the search engines by building unnatural and spammy backlinks to your site. It may just do more harm than good.