SEO - Links – Off-Page Ranking and Lasting Quality

Did you know that your Google ranking can be strongly affected by external pages that link to you? Did you also know that there are better ways to use links like “click here” to boost your ranking and user experience? We discuss easy ways to get more out of your linking efforts that you can use in addition to our Google Trends article, and really give lasting benefits to your site traffic!

Off-Page Ranking and Back Links

Hyperlinks to your website from an external website (i.e. one that isn’t yours) are called backlinks or backwards links. Search engines look for and count the backlinks to your website, Google looks at backlinks as a form of legitimacy and quality. The thought pattern is - if a website has more websites linking to it, it must have something worthwhile that people are looking for. More backlinks generally mean ranking higher in the organic search results for the relevant keywords. However, there is a quality over quantity factor, meaning if more prominent websites link back to yours as opposed to a relatively unknown one, the link from the larger website will carry more weight.
Link building is the process used to try and generate more links to your website, which essentially involves contacting other web pages and asking for them to link to you. This can be a laborious task. Social media provides a fantastic opportunity to build links, not by asking people to link to you, but through providing high quality, interesting content that people want to share. This is a much more rewarding way to link build, however we will cover several social media and backlink finding options later.

How to make quality links

To make quality links, you need to make sure you’re relating to what your user is searching for. Search engines look for the content in a link to help searchers, so the days of relying on “click here” are quickly coming to a close. Below are some examples of bad links that can add unnecessary text to your page, and good links that can help your SEO. Other than that, they will also look a lot better when users scroll through your information looking for pages of interest to go to next!

Poor                                                                                      Better!
To contact us, click here                                                     Contact us

Find out more about Web Marketing                              Find out more about Web Marketing

To place an order click here                                              Place an order

Other Important Notes on SEO

If you are a genuine website producing great relevant content and being consistent with the keywords you are using, you shouldn’t run into many troubles with SEO. Some choose to outsource SEO options, and there are tools and solutions available at rather large prices. Avoid anything that guarantees number 1 ranking or spams you in any way. Also be careful of sites that quote low prices without details on what will be achieved or what personal details they require. As the Google search algorithm is getting more and more complex, it is becoming more and more obvious that web developers just need to follow Google’s code of best practices and create relevant engaging quality content that people want to read and your web page will rank highly.  
Finally, be sure to save the below Periodic Table of SEO Ranking Factors!

This is a Great chart for SEO and sums up all the components rather nicely. Courtesy of Search Engine Land!

To-do list

        I have an idea of my current backlink activity through Google Webmaster Tools. (see webmaster tool setup article)
        I have taken note of any potential blocks in my pages that may be affecting my usability and ranking.
        My hyperlinks are relevant to the page they lead to, and I have altered links that say “click here” etc
        I have noted how my general SEO health compares now after changing some tags and headings

For Psych / HR
Even when contacting for example business or psychologist advice websites, you don’t need to write up a huge business proposal of why they should be linking to your site. They link to businesses their current users may be interested in and you provide this business, simple. Let them know you have looked over their site and like it, then explain briefly what your site is about and why linking to you may be a benefit to their users. You can copy and paste parts of your email content for different users, just be sure that the content applies each time and that you’re saying something of interest to them.


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