Part of being a great blogger is understanding search engine optimization (SEO). While creating valuable and engaging content is the most important part of running a blog, SEO will help give this content visibility. SEO generally involves keyword research and then subsequent linking using these keywords. You can visit SEOMoz to learn more about how to conduct keyword research. Once you have your keywords, it’s time to begin the linking process.
Although utilizing links for your small business online marketing sounds easy, there are actually quite a few things to understand about linking. In order to make sure that you are linking correctly, consider some of the different types of linking:
Online Marketing with Internal Linking
Internal linking refers to linking to other pages within the same site. For example, if you publish an article on your blog, you may want to link back to other pages of your website within that post. Internal linking is good for a few reasons:
- It makes it easier for visitors to navigate around your website. This gives you control and allows you to point your readers to the absolute best webpage you have for certain topics faster and easier.
- Internal linking can help improve your Google PageRank, which will help your site increase on a search engine results page (SERP).
- Search engines will be able to index your content more effectively if you have a lot of internal links.
Internal linking is considered the easiest way to use linking to improve your site. You are in charge of inserting the links, and all of the links go back to your page. In other words, there is no talking with different editors or writing special posts in order to benefit from internal linking.
Online Marketing with External Linking
External linking is when a link is found on one website and brings anyone who clicks on the link to a different website. I displayed external linking in the first paragraph when I gave credit to SEOMoz. External linking is a great way to use the information of other websites in order to make a point in an article you are writing for your blog because you are giving credit back.
External linking should also be looked at from a different angle. Instead of you linking out to a different website, you want other sites to do the same for you. In other words, you want other sites to refer back to your site. This works well for several reasons:
- If an authoritative site is linking back to your blog, it helps show that you have a reputable blog and gives you some credibility. After all, an authoritative site would not link to invaluable information.
- If another site is utilizing external linking and links back to your site, you could very well get an increase in traffic. An entirely new audience has the opportunity to click that link, you have a good chance of getting at least a few new visitors.
- The more pages linking back to your site the better in the eyes of Google. This will help increase your ranking on a SERP.
Many companies utilize guest posting in order to earn these types of external links. Many websites will give you a link back to your blog in exchange for great content, so it is an all-around win-win.
Linking in the Author Bio Box
If your blog is going to utilize guest posting in order for backlinks, there are two different things that could happen: you get your backlinks in an author bio box or you get your backlinks in the copy of the text. In the majority of situations, editors will give you an author bio box.
Getting backlinks in an author bio box is a great way to improve your small business online marketing and your blog’s SEO. An author box is usually equipped with a photo of you, the author, which further helps give you credit for your work. Google search engines and authors typically like these types of links.
Linking in the Copy of the Text
When guest posting, the second thing that could happen to you is that you get a link back to your blog in the copy of the text. Believe it or not, this actually holds more value than a link in the author bio box. Google gives this type of link more weight because editors have control over what types of links go inside the copy of an article. Because an editor can choose which links go inside an article, it is much more likely that those links are of value to a reader as opposed to links in an author box.
For this reason, it is much harder for an author to gain links within the body of the text. These links typically must be extremely relevant. For example, if you were going to guest post on a website about marketing best practices but your blog is typically about sports, you would not really be able to link back to something on your blog.
What Do All of These Different Types of Linking Mean to You?
It is important to be aware of the different types of linking available so that you know where to put your efforts. All bloggers should utilize a little bit of each kind of linking in order for the best SEO results.
Have you ever put thought into the different types of linking? What do you find to be most helpful for your blog?
Photo Credit: thinkgeek.com
Author: Amanda DiSilvestro
Amanda DiSilvestro gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice ranging from keyword density to recovering from Panda and Penguin updates. She writes for the nationally recognized SEO Company HigherVisibility.com that offers online marketing services to a wide range of companies across the country.