External Links are those links that link to your website from other websites.
Now, the more credibility that a site linking to your website has, the more positive juices your website receives to rank higher in search engines.
Conversely, the more shady and suspect a website is that is linking to your website, the less credibility your website will receive.
For example, in 2012 a music store owner came to my office in Haddonfield and was very upset because his website seemed to have disappeared from search engines. He used to rank as the #1 listing when people Google'd "South Jersey Music Lessons", but not anymore...
We took a look at what could have caused this, and found that hundreds of Russian porn sites were linking to his website.
So, how did this happen?
Very simple -- he hired an unscrupulous "SEO" company to increase the rankings for his website.
As a result of these unnatural links, Google's algorithm spotted some fraud going on, and penalized his website.
After all, why would so many Russian porn sites link to a New Jersey music store?
Doesn't make sense, and that's why it's critical you only try to drive quality links from quality websites.
It took us over 6 months to get his website back to good standing.
Having as many credible, and relevant sites linking to your website is very important for increasing the ranking of your website for your high-volume keywords.
However, adopting strategies that encourage bad websites to link to your website is very similar to a good kid hanging out with the bad crowd. Sure it's fun for a while, but he/she is looking for TROUBLE.
That is why the best way to drive great external links that are going to increase your sales is to do the following:
- Sign up for services like H.A.R.O. that allow you to send quotes to the media who are writing stories about your industry.
- Share your content on Social Media, and spend some money to promote the best ones. This will maximize the potential for people to find your work interesting, and to link to it.
- Consistently send out press releases. I find the best strategy is to read up on the latest news in your industry, and send the media quotes with your unique insights (don't sound like everybody else -- be contrarian).
- Reach out and guest blog for other people in your industry (don't forget to link the article to your site). People think that Matt Cutts from Google ended the power of guest blogging, but that's just not true. All they did was improve Google's algorithm to ensure people just weren't guest blogging crap to get links. So, make it good!
At the end of the day, if you are authoring great videos, articles and podcasts, people are going to find, and link to you.
However, it doesn't hurt to be more proactive and seek out links with some media relations, guest blogging and social media advertising.
Don't compete — DOMINATE.
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Matt Steffen was Listed by Forbes as the #1 Marketing Consultant Who Avoids the B.S.