Link Building 101 - Guide To Understanding Backlinks

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Warriors,

To help ease the confusion in the process of link building, I've decided to write an easy to understand guide for building baclinks and how to easily use them. This guide is not meant for the advanced marketer, but to help inexperienced user to understand the concept and strategies of link building.


Backlink 101


What is a backlink? Simply put, a backlink is a URL link from your webpage or website that resides on another person's webpage or website. Backlinks are also referred to as inbound links, inward links, incoming links, and inlinks. In my 6 years of SEO services, I've witnessed firsthand how powerful and important link building is. Backlinks are extremely vital in SEO; it is the most important factor in ranking high on all the search engines, especially Google! In fact, they are the fundamental foundation of good Search Engine Optimization.
Search engines, especially Google, use the quality and number of your backlinks in their formula to determine how important and popular your website is. Google gives higher credit to websites that contain larger numbers of quality relevant backlinks. However, studies have shown that the quality of the backlink is more important than relevancy of the link; I know this for a fact because I have put many of my clients in the number one position in Google with backlinks on irrelevant websites. Therefore, it is far greater to have higher page rank backlinks, than having a large sum of low quality links. Remember, quality always beats quantity.


Anchor Text


Anchor text is the hyperlinked words you click on that sends viewers to your webpage. An example of an anchor text is; how to lose weight fast, or 10 ways to quit smoking now. Anchor text is the most important part in link building because it tells the search engines what the page your directing them to is all about. When leaving your backlink, make sure to put the keyword you want to rank for in the anchor text. To leave an anchor text, you have to use this very simple html code exactly how it is written, excluding your domain name and keyword.


<a hef="http://www.yourdomain.com">keyword</a>


Example: I want to rank for the keyword "cheap shoes", and my domain name is; www.oldcheapshoes.com.

Your anchor text will look like this: <a hef="http://www.oldcheapshoes.com">cheap shoes</a>

Example of a sentence with an anchor text: When I was driving to the store, I saw a sign that was advertising <a hef="http://www.oldcheapshoes.com">cheap shoes</a>, so I had to check it out!


Different Types of Links


One-Way Link
One-way links are links to your website that have been placed on another website or webpage. They are called one-way because you don't have to place the recipient's link on your site. By having unique and interesting content, readers will naturally link to you, these kinds of links are very effective and valuable. One-way links show search engines that your website is interesting and popular. Therefore, search engines place a vast amount of importance on link popularity, especially Google! Thus, having more one-way links will increase your chances at ranking high.


Reciprocal Link
Reciprocal link is a mutual agreement between two website owners or webmasters to exchange links and place it in on their website. Reciprocal links are pretty common among non competing websites. Although theses links are commonly used, Google doesn't place as much value to them, as they do with one-way links.


Three-Way Link
Website A links to website B, who then links to website C, and site C links to website A. It has been said that three-way links are harder for search engines to detect due to the nature or the link. However, I've know a few people in the past who have been caught by Google. Three-way links are short lived, and the long term effects are not worth the hassle.


Backlink Strategy's


Article Writing
One of the most popular ways to get relevant backlinks is to write and submit articles to the major article directories. Although the process of creating 100's of articles may be daunting and time consuming, you can get a good amount of backlinks with a well written article. But make sure you optimize your article around the keywords you want to rank for. Also, include your keyword in your anchor text. Note: Be sure to follow the guidelines for each article directory.


Blog & Forum Commenting
Blog & forum commenting is a great way to gain quality backlinks. Not only will you get a link, but you can gain good exposure to your website. Before you comment in any blog or forum, you must make sure that it has a dofollow attribute, otherwise your backlink will not get credit. You can find this out by viewing the website source page. To do this, click on the tab in your toolbar that reads "page", now scroll to the bottom and select "view source". You will see a notepad page pull up, now type Ctrl +F on your keyboard and a little box will appear on the screen. Just type the word "nofollow", if nothing comes up, then you are good to go. Note: When commenting be sure to give useful information, don't just say "nice article" or your post will most likely be deleted.


Press Release
Press releases are basically articles that promote your website, and if done correctly you can get instant relevant backlinks. Google loves press release because they are the epitome of white hat SEO. However, writing a press release can be pretty difficult, depending on your niche.


Social Bookmarking
Social Bookmarks are sites that allow users to save their favorite websites through tags, where public viewers can see them. There is a lot of talk going on right now about whether theses kinds of links will hold as much weight as they used to. However, social bookmarking has been around for a while and has proven to be a good strategy for getting backlinks.


Contest
One of the easiest ways to gain backlinks to your website or blog is to hold a contest. You can do this by asking the readers that are interested to write about your contest in their blog. You can also submit your information regarding your contest to websites and blogs that follow contests. Note: By placing conditions in the term of the contest such as; all readers interested in the contest must subscribe to the RSS feed, will help gain popularity to your site.


Link Exchange or Reciprocal Links
Link exchange also known as reciprocal or two-way links are basically the process of asking other webmasters, blog owners and website owners to exchange links. You can gain a lot of backlinks this way and sometimes you can arrange a way to use your anchor text. However, Google doesn't like these kinds of links and it can take some time before webmasters will post your link.


Purchasing Links
Buying or renting links can have a better effect in your SEO campaign, than that of reciprocal links, only because they are one-way links. I would highly advise anyone to reconsider the idea of purchasing links, due to the fact that Google and other search engines don't like paid links. Search engines have been cracking down on sites that have bought links. In fact, many websites have been penalized by losing their page rank and even de-indexed for selling links. Note: Buyers of paid links can also be penalized if caught, not just the sellers.


Link Farms
Two words STAY AWAY!


Link Bait
Link bait is one the most effective ways to get a large number of backlinks, it can also cause an extremely high level of viral linking as well. Link bait is any form of content such as; an article or feature in a website that gets viewers interested enough to link to it. The main purpose of link baiting is to create a buzz that will get people to write, talk, and blog about. You can achieve this by writing something thought provoking, infuriating or controversial, some examples of this are; "The Clinton scandal", or "The war in Iraq" it can even be disagreeing with an authority figure.


Authority Sites
Leaving your anchor text link on a high pagerank authority site will do wonders for any website (no matter the age or niche). This is the most effective and powerful strategy that you can use in your attempt to rank high in Google. This method alone has been the main reason for my success with my SEO business, and has proven to me time after time to work extremely well. However, locating these high pagerank authority sites can be very difficult to find, and also time consuming. It has taken me over two years to master how to find high ranking authority sites, but once you figure out the equation, you can find them much easier. In order to find these websites, just go to any search engine and type in a category, such as "health", "real estate", "news", etc. You will then get a long list of results, now click on any website. Next, check if it has a nofollow attribute. If nothing shows up then your good to go, the hard part is finding out where to leave your anchor text link. Note: Make sure that you can leave a dofollow link or else you will not get credit.


5 Things to Avoid


1. Do not use free for all sites (FFA)
2. Stay clear from any sex related, gambling, and other unpleasant websites.
3. Don't link to sites that have more than 50 outbound links
4. Stay far from pages that are called "links", "link pages" or any url that contains the words "link" or "links"
5. Never use a link farm!

I hope this will help in your link building strategies. Please remember that link building is not a one-time thing, you must stay consistent with any and all methods of backlinking to maximize your results.

Chris,
#101 #backlink #building #link #truth
  • Profile picture of the author rcherry
    Great information!
    I'm new to the forum...and new to internet marketing. have a few niche sites, up no seo
    yet. still learning.

    thanks: rcherry
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    • Profile picture of the author freebroc1
      You really write an informative essay. Thanks
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      • Profile picture of the author esspwebmaster
        it was wonderful great information thanks for sharing these seo tips
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      • Profile picture of the author carrenting
        Good information for SEO-starters. Thanks for sharing.
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      • Profile picture of the author mygold
        Thank you for sharing this great information.
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      • Profile picture of the author Katejon
        Thanks for a great post - but I was curious.

        If you link to high PR sites then they may well have a lot of outbound links - so not linking to sites with more than 50 outbound sites seems odd - unless it is in proportion to the number of pages they have?
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  • Profile picture of the author lacraiger
    tell us something we dont know. why cut and paste basic stuff from other sites?
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    • Profile picture of the author flaminjo
      Originally Posted by lacraiger View Post

      tell us something we dont know. why cut and paste basic stuff from other sites?
      ha ha! so true, i was also expecting something new.. same old stuff!
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      • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
        Originally Posted by kkchoon View Post

        Hey Daniel, I found that in context anchor links have higher link power than normal side-way links. However, authority side-way links seems to be working even better than low PR contextual links, and this seems to be the case, can you confirm?
        Keep it simple.

        The higher the PR of the page and the less outgoing links it has, the more link juice that is passed.

        And if you can anchor text it for your respective keyword it's even better.

        Regardless of relevance.

        Originally Posted by flaminjo View Post

        ha ha! so true, i was also expecting something new.. same old stuff!
        He did it because there are literally thousands of new warriors who don't know about it. That some of us do, doesn't mean that everyone else does.

        And that's your first Marketing 101.
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    • Profile picture of the author danmorton
      Originally Posted by lacraiger View Post

      tell us something we dont know. why cut and paste basic stuff from other sites?
      Oh yeah - and make sure your content is totally unique and original!
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Grant
      Originally Posted by lacraiger View Post

      tell us something we dont know. why cut and paste basic stuff from other sites?
      Agreed. At least make it unique.
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  • Profile picture of the author adamloving
    Thanks for the write-up Chris. Don't for get that nofollow applies to all backlinks, not just blog comments (but I'm glad you explained it).
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  • Profile picture of the author Jon Alexander
    Very nicely written - the only comment I'd make is to include pharmaceuticals in point 2 along with porn etc.
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    • Profile picture of the author Geo777
      Great info. Thanks so much for it!!
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  • Profile picture of the author Samuel Lee
    A great reference point for newer users to be sure, and I've put that into my warrior reference material file for future reference! Nice post for first thread!
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  • Profile picture of the author marcus passey
    Great post thanks will come in handy for me and others I am sure.

    cheers

    Marcus
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
    My kind of post, good job Chris.

    I must say I have to agree with every single thing you have said.
    • Authority beats relevance.
    • Anchor text with keyword.
    • All the methods that work and all the ones to avoid.
    • Must be do follow.
    All a checkmark in my book.

    Guys, make sure you implement what is described in this thread, in my opinion there is nothing more powerful.

    Ranking in the SEs for keywords with high demand will give you the most targetted traffic possible.

    - Dan

    P.S: Chris, you forgot slave sites. Domains of your own with useful content one way linking to your main site or to the site you want to rank with, ideally on a different IP. Also known as personal link networks.

    P.P.S: Now, this is the kind of post we want from new members.
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  • Profile picture of the author pj413
    Very nice post, I like the part about authority sites and contests. I wish I would have seen this thread a year ago. Perhaps I would have started applying these methods much sooner than I have.

    PJ,
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  • Profile picture of the author Netters
    I just checked my blog by viewing the source and typing in "no follow" and it showed up! How do I get rid of it so people can backlink to me?
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  • Profile picture of the author 1bad55
    As someone new to selling online I am soaking this information up like a spoonge. I hope my sponge does not get too full or I will explode.

    Great Information and Thank You For Sharing!!!!!
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    • Profile picture of the author joshmac
      Thanks. Us new guys appreciate it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Charles Butler
    2 Questions:

    I assume after building backlinks I have to be patient and wait for google to adjust its rankings, or does going up the rankings happen rather quickly?

    If Yahoo Site Explorer says a site thats number one in google ranking shows 10 backlinks, would building 20 high quality links help me take its top spot?
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    • Profile picture of the author Chris Johnson
      Originally Posted by Charles Butler View Post

      2 Questions:

      I assume after building backlinks I have to be patient and wait for google to adjust its rankings, or does going up the rankings happen rather quickly?

      If Yahoo Site Explorer says a site thats number one in google ranking shows 10 backlinks, would building 20 high quality links help me take its top spot?

      1. Google will recognize your backlinks right away.

      2. In most cases when I used backlinks from high pr authority sites, I would normally overtake my competitor.
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      • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
        None of us can say with authority exactly what Google values or doesn't when it comes to links, but it's a pretty safe bet that links that are a) one-way (you don't give a link back from the same site being linked to); b) relevant (from sites closely related to your own, content-wise); and c) recognized (as in recognized authority sites in your niche) are the best links. Empires have been built on this simple formula, as many Warriors will attest. Focus on this and don't get sidetracked by the latest gimmicks.

        That's for your active link building program. But there's another part of this that often gets overlooked: great content. If you work hard to post truly high quality content on your sites, you'll start getting a lot of actual "votes" (links) from others who happen to like what you've got to offer. Over time, this effect can be the difference between just being on Page 1 and being #1.

        John
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        • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
          Originally Posted by Zeus66 View Post

          None of us can say with authority exactly what Google values or doesn't when it comes to links, but it's a pretty safe bet that links that are a) one-way (you don't give a link back from the same site being linked to); b) relevant (from sites closely related to your own, content-wise); and c) recognized (as in recognized authority sites in your niche) are the best links. Empires have been built on this simple formula, as many Warriors will attest. Focus on this and don't get sidetracked by the latest gimmicks.

          That's for your active link building program. But there's another part of this that often gets overlooked: great content. If you work hard to post truly high quality content on your sites, you'll start getting a lot of actual "votes" (links) from others who happen to like what you've got to offer. Over time, this effect can be the difference between just being on Page 1 and being #1.

          John
          Hey John,

          From personal experience, when it comes to ranking, the authority of the site provides a more powerful backlink, regardless of relevance.

          In other words, if you are in the Internet Marketing niche, a link from NASA (which has nothing to do with it) is more powerful than a link from the Warrior Forum (which doesn't mean a WF backlink is not good, it is).

          Again, that's only in terms of the SERPs.

          With the rest I agree.

          - Dan
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          • Profile picture of the author pj413
            Originally Posted by Daniel Molano View Post

            Hey John,

            From personal experience, when it comes to ranking, the authority of the site provides a more powerful backlink, regardless of relevance.

            In other words, if you are in the Internet Marketing niche, a link from NASA (which has nothing to do with it) is more powerful than a link from the Warrior Forum (which doesn't mean a WF backlink is not amazing, it is).

            Again, that's only in terms of the SERPs.

            With the rest I agree.

            - Dan

            This is very true! I am ranking in the 1st and 2nd position in Google with my keywords. The best part about it is that pretty much all of my backlinks are on unrelated authority sites. You will be amazed how powerful these links are. For instance, look at the top ranking websites; they all have 1000's of unrelated backlinks.

            PJ
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            • Profile picture of the author SeanyG
              Thanks so much!
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            • Profile picture of the author ironwarrior
              Can someone clarify the process of backlinking to non relavant sites? I understand the concept but not the actual proccess. How can you add achor text to a site that has nothing to do with your keywords? Wont you get banned etc.. Can you give an example please?
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            • Profile picture of the author indoarticle
              Originally Posted by pj413 View Post

              This is very true! I am ranking in the 1st and 2nd position in Google with my keywords. The best part about it is that pretty much all of my backlinks are on unrelated authority sites. You will be amazed how powerful these links are. For instance, look at the top ranking websites; they all have 1000's of unrelated backlinks.

              PJ
              It's something new for me..So..backlink from authority sites is very powerful right..? Eventhough it's not relevant site..? I used to believe that good baclink is the one from relevant sites..Wel..thank you for the SEO secret you share..
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          • Profile picture of the author kkchoon
            Originally Posted by Daniel Molano View Post

            Hey John,

            From personal experience, when it comes to ranking, the authority of the site provides a more powerful backlink, regardless of relevance.

            In other words, if you are in the Internet Marketing niche, a link from NASA (which has nothing to do with it) is more powerful than a link from the Warrior Forum (which doesn't mean a WF backlink is not good, it is).

            Again, that's only in terms of the SERPs.

            With the rest I agree.

            - Dan
            Hey Daniel, I found that in context anchor links have higher link power than normal side-way links. However, authority side-way links seems to be working even better than low PR contextual links, and this seems to be the case, can you confirm?
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    • Profile picture of the author danmorton
      Originally Posted by Charles Butler View Post

      2 Questions:

      I assume after building backlinks I have to be patient and wait for google to adjust its rankings, or does going up the rankings happen rather quickly?

      If Yahoo Site Explorer says a site thats number one in google ranking shows 10 backlinks, would building 20 high quality links help me take its top spot?
      Charles - backlink building is a relatively slow process for 2 reasons;

      1. Search engines may get suspicious if all of a sudden your sites gets 3000 backlinks in one day. 2 - 7 links per day is a much better strategy.

      2. Due mainly to #1, backlink building is relative slow. How slow - in days? That depends upon lots of things - quality of backlinks (pagerank?), quality of site content, competitiveness of your niche, - and so on.

      As for your question #2, definitely - maybe. Again, we're talking quality. IF your site has better content, IF your backlinks are of better quality, IF you have other assets pointing back at your main site, etc.

      Really, it's a quality AND a quantity thing w/backlinks. Even though backlinks may build slowly as compared with other methods, they tend to be long-lasting in their effectiveness.

      Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author Netters
    Wow, I really learned a lot and it wasn't confusing at all. Thank you.
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  • Profile picture of the author helpmePPC
    Next time make it more difficult to read.

    Thanks a million and I appreciated it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Darth Executor
    Can you go in a bit more detail about link farms? Why not use them?
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    • Profile picture of the author Jackbgd
      Thanks Chris, great post about backlinks, it's just not so easy to find them. It all depends on the niche you're in.
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      • Profile picture of the author conners88
        this some create infor for beginners like me.. thanks very much
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        • Profile picture of the author 4morereferrals
          Yes ... I hear the term link farm used daily.

          But even the referenced page to a google definition, where it was supposedly defined - was not even clear - as to what is considered a link farm.
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  • Profile picture of the author LNSTRM
    Great information Chris, and thanks for sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author mlongley
    Thanks for the great post, and good reminders. Keep up the great work!
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  • Profile picture of the author kayayurt
    Great info. Thanks very usefull
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    Kaya

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  • Profile picture of the author Software Factory
    I wouldn't agree with number 3 on "5 things to Avoid" because it depends about the size of the site and its type. Also not sure that google really cares about what the page is called (number 4) because they can probably figure out which pages are directory type pages. I believe they are deeply discounting directories and link-type pages as it is.
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnMiller
    Hi

    I am webmaster and doing 3 way link exchange with gambling sites,

    If anyone interested, then mail me on my ID johndotseo24at@gmaildotcom

    Thanks !
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  • Profile picture of the author FrankPinch
    well said, good post for any newbie at link building. Some other stuff could be added, such as social medias, link wheels... but still pretty good basics!
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  • Profile picture of the author Realstar
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author problembaer
      Good article, thanks for the share!
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  • Profile picture of the author HomeBizNizz
    Great guide, thanks a million...
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    • Profile picture of the author seospan
      Great post! Very detailed and informative, well written. I'm just bothered with this "link farm".. can you give a detailed info about this and what is it all about. Why not use them?
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  • Profile picture of the author Jimerson Farveez
    HEy man, your guide is very useful for me to get more ideas about SEO process
    Thxs for sharing it man
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  • Profile picture of the author smogharp
    Originally Posted by Chris Johnson View Post

    Warriors,
    3. Don't link to sites that have more than 50 outbound links
    Do you mean pages with more than 50 outbound links?

    I have around 100 outbound links on my site, but they're all relevant to the page they're located on (mainly in blog posts).

    Google seems to reward sites that link out to other relevant websites in 'good neighborhoods'.
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  • Profile picture of the author KeepFaith
    Thx Chris Johnson, I absolutely needed this to clarify what exactly back links are and what they mean for SEO, awesome detalied post!
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  • Profile picture of the author Steven Liew
    Great post. I thought I had it all but I totally forgot about the nofollow attribute. Thanks!
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  • Very informative and useful post.
    You've clearly defined all the types of backlinks and anyone can easily understand after reading once the article. This is really a great guide to the newbies.
    Thanks a lot chris for your sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lusco
    I am new to IM and SEO Strategies, so thanks for sharing.

    Quick question - Not sure if this obvious.

    How would one know that the sites have more than 50 outbound links ?
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  • Profile picture of the author techetips
    very helpful information . thanks a lot .
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  • Profile picture of the author linkbullets
    Wow.....it's well written & I think it is very helpful for freshers & some times helpful for experienced SEO guy or gal also.
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  • Profile picture of the author khenmhike
    I have learned so much. This are such a good tips and information, thanks for your infos!
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeMorgan
    Useful post , especially those who are new to building back linking .
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  • Profile picture of the author bestitrix
    Great guidelines for backlinking methods. Thank You for sharing them.
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  • Profile picture of the author rcritchett
    All pretty precise - Especially the part about what NOT TO DO! Often enough, because the goal is to get ranked fast, people get into bad link neighborhoods and link farms.. and then.. big brother TORCHES YOU!

    Thanks for sharing your list, good reinforcement.
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  • Profile picture of the author rcritchett
    Great reinforcement and new distinctions as well.

    Thanks for sharing.
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  • Profile picture of the author agravity
    I agree with you but this line
    Note: Make sure that you can leave a dofollow link or else you will not get credit.
    is not ok i guess. Google also counts no follow if coming from a reliable source
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  • Profile picture of the author ordinary
    thanks for the tips..
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  • Profile picture of the author SEOChief
    What do you think of social bookmark links from sites like Reddit? Great information about link building.
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  • Profile picture of the author jonnyhardbaked
    Thanks for a very good information.
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  • Profile picture of the author JudeS
    This post is really helpful. It would be nice if it could be updated to reflect current best practices
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  • Profile picture of the author lespritb
    Wow! great one! it's all about link building.. I Dem sure it'll help new guys with old's like me too.. Thanks a lot.
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  • Profile picture of the author umrbd
    Great piece of knowledge you have forgotten directory submission, I wonder why they are not just source of getting one way link but you can also build authority and traffic of your site by submitting it only in quality directories which are maintained by humans and frequently visited by normal users. I think paid links should be excluded from the list of link building techniques.
    One more way is of Guest Blog Posts which you forgot I guess
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  • Profile picture of the author andapunbisa
    Very nice info. Thanks so much for it!! I was very helpful at all
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Johnson
    Very helpful to newbies....thanks for sharing
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  • Profile picture of the author NoBSGuy
    That was a very good post. Thanks for all this goodness
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  • Profile picture of the author dagaul101
    Nice to have a simple guie to link building, I tend to think to think of your site as a shop, and on page SEO as directions to the products in your shop, and link building directing customers to your shop
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  • Profile picture of the author rosesmark
    You are phenomenal...You know about how any body create backlinks with the help of knowledge
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  • Profile picture of the author SamDenial
    That is so handy and I appreciate it. I will keep use of it.
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  • Profile picture of the author markwilson4074
    Thanks for the info. Looks helpful and effective.
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