We all want good SEO. We want to be ranked and seen. However, anyone who hires an SEO expert or is reading blogs and articles on SEO is looking for great SEO. SEO that drives traffic and influences search engine placement, as Debra Mastaler writes in her article “Smart Links Can Make Your SEO Sing”.
According to Mastaler, the two most important way to build links that will result in great SEO are to “use keywords as anchor text (also known as link text) and to point links to pages which have been optimized for the keyword terms you’re looking for in your anchors.” Although all working links contribute to your SEO strategy, smart linking will increase your visibility and drive your traffic even better than before.
I’ve been thinking about it this way: if you were shopping for a pair of shoes, you’d be unlikely to go into the hardware store and search for shoes there. Think about link building in the same way: your links need to be optimized to pages that have relevancy to your own products or services. Even Bing’s Webmaster Blog recognizes says, “when seeking an endorsement with an external, inbound link, the theme of the site you want to link to yours should be relevant to your site’s theme”.
One of the most powerful components of link popularity is called anchor text (the clickable links inside the text you are reading). Google and Bing both recognize anchored text and how it defines the themes of your pages and influences how your site ranks when search results are determined. So, including well-researched links that point to your sight will increase your rankings, and inevitably the number of visitors who can find you as a result of those rankings. As Mastaler summarizes, “Your keyword anchors help influence how you rank for a particular phrase. If a lot of sites are hosting your keyword rich links and the engine can determine those links were not injected to manipulate the search results, your target page is on it’s way to ranking well.”
Including keywords as anchor text and developing optimized links is not an easy task. However, it is worth the time and effort to build a website for your business that relies on first-rate content, which will result in great SEO results. Great SEO strategy will get you great rankings.