Google is all about links. They want to identify the best quality sites and judge the response towards content to grade whether it offers value or not. At the moment their best tool to measure these verticals are by using links.
The link metrics used by search engines look for two things; incoming links and outgoing links. You have the most control over outbound links and should be including them in your content. By doing so you will improve citation and trust flow.
Outbound links are the links you embed in your own content and post to your blog. The content you are linking to must be relevant to the theme you are posting or relevant to the citation of the point you are making.
The idea is to provide your visitors with further reading material they can use to gain more information, compare opinions or verify what you are saying is true. Therefore only link to sites that you trust publish good content.
It is worth pointing out, that just because a website you like now may not have a high trust or authority score. The site may be fairly new for example and is still establishing itself as trustworthy in the eyes of search engine crawlers. That does not mean you should not link to it however, providing you are confident the quality of the content they are publishing offers value to readers.
The best way to increase your SEO ranking is by receiving links from other people’s content, known as inbound links. This means you have to produce quality content that other writers that can use it in their own work. If your content is relevant to that of other writers you have more opportunities to receive incoming links.
The problem with outbound links is they are difficult to get. Once Google cottoned on to marketing attempts to manipulate outbound links by publishing guest blogs with embedded links back to their site on third party websites, the search engine giant got tough.
Google updated its algorithm to determine the trust and authority levels of websites. Established websites that are attracting a lot of traffic indicates the site is offering something of value to its readers and is worth visiting. This is the type of site you should be linking into, and hopefully receiving links from.
There is however, an ocean of low quality sites that do not publish good content and were launched purely for the purpose of money-making by selling links to online businesses. If you attract external links from these type of sites you will be penalised.
To increase your chances of receiving inbound links, get active on social media networks and follow other writers that cover the same theme or industry as you do on your own blog. Writers covering the same topics are more likely to link to you than followers that do not keep a blog. Social media is not merely about attracting customers, but actual followers as well.
No Follow links
Online magazines, including industry specific eZines, were warned they cannot provide outbound links in the text, and could only offer no=follow links to writers. This does not mean other writers will not link to your site from topping ranking magazines, but you cannot writer a guest post with a link to your site. Editors will reject your article regardless of how good the content is.
No=follow links unfortunately do not count as an inbound links, although if you do have the opportunity to publish content on such third party sites, you can improve your online profile and with it your trust and authority amongst readers which in turn will send indicators to search engines that your trust and authority scores should be lifted in page rankings.
If you are pursuing a content marketing campaign, quality links is a key attribute to raising your trust and citation scores with search engines. In turn you improve search ranking and will attract more organic traffic, which means more customers that are ready to buy – and that is not always the case on social media networks.