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August 15, 2007

Top 10 Reasons You Are Not Getting Links

Convincing other webmasters to link to your website is a difficult, yet rewarding Internet marketing strategy. Inbound links help increase traffic to your website in two different ways.

First, inbound links create “click-through” traffic for your site. Click-through traffic is generated when visitors on other websites see a link to your site and click on it.

Second, inbound links create search engine traffic for your website. Many popular search engines use the number and quality of inbound links to your website as a key factor in determining the position or rank of your site in their search results. The higher your website’s ranking, the more potential traffic your site receives.

There are many factors involved in convincing another webmaster to link to your site that are beyond your control. Rather than focus on those factors, let’s focus on the top 10 reasons you’re not getting links that are within your ability to correct.

1) You don’t ask.

The majority of webmasters (at least the ones I know) don’t spend their twilight hours combing the Internet for websites to link to. Maybe they should, but they don’t. If you want other websites to link to you, you need to pound the pavement, write some emails, and make some phone calls.

2) You ask the wrong people.

Don’t use the shotgun approach when asking others to link to you. Requesting inbound links from unrelated sites wastes your time, and the time of the unfortunate people you contact. Instead, approach Internet marketing like you would any other form of marketing. Identify your target audience and put your link where they can see it.

3) You ask the wrong way.

Nobody wants to receive emails from automated software programs. If and when you use email as a tool for link building, make sure each link request is personalized and includes the recipient’s name whenever possible.

4) Your website is new.

Many webmasters want to know that Google has accepted you and other sites are linking to yours before they join in. It’s definitely a catch 22. In most cases you just need to submit your URL to Google and wait a month or two for them to come around.

5) You link to “bad neighborhoods”.

Bad neighborhoods are clusters of websites that search engines have flagged as disreputable in regard to their search engine marketing practices. Linking to these sites or even linking to a website that links to these sites can hurt your reputation with search engines, other website owners and Internet users alike. Thoroughly examine the websites that you’re linking to. If their content seems “spammy” or gives you a bad gut feeling, it’s probably best not to link to them.

6) Your website contains ads or links to adult content.

There are two major reasons why hosting links to adult websites can seriously hurt your link building efforts. First, adult sites are offensive to many Internet users. Webmasters who would otherwise link to your site may avoid you for that reason alone. Second, the online adult entertainment industry is notorious for search engine spamming. This dramatically increases the likelihood that linking to your site will damage the reputation of anyone linking to you. This understanding is not lost on experienced webmasters who will likely avoid your site like the plague. If your online business isn’t part of the adult entertainment industry, you would do best to steer clear of it.

7) Your website uses a flash intro or splash page.

Flash intro pages have been known to annoy Internet users and have an adverse effect on search engine rankings. And while this may not affect your link popularity when it comes to one-way inbound links, many reciprocal link partners may pass on the opportunity to exchange links with you because of the lack of text content on your homepage. Save your site visitors the extra mouse click and skip the intro yourself.

8) There isn’t enough text on your site.

Internet users and search engines, seeking information on the Web, put a high value on text content. If your website is short on text, and it’s not a video or photo related site, odds are that other websites will look elsewhere when handing out links. Take some time to write descriptive text about the topic of your site or hire someone qualified to do it for you.

9) Your site hosts pop-up or pop-under ads.

Few things annoy web users like pop-up and pop-under ads. Most website owners understand that providing a positive user experience for their website visitors encourages them to return at a later date. If your pop-up ads irritate their visitors and hurt their efforts to generate return traffic, they won’t link to you. Drop the pop ads and we’ll all sleep better tonight.

10) Your URL is a subdomain of another site.

Using a subdomain as your primary URL raises questions about the stability of your site. Many subdomain hosted sites are free or temporary. Other webmasters don’t want to link to a site that they aren’t sure will be there next week. If your serious about your online endeavor, spend the $8.00 and purchase a top-level domain.

There is your top 10 list. For more reasons why other sites won’t link to yours, see our Top 30 Reasons Why People Won’t Link to You link building article at LinkAssure.com.

Author:  Erik is the VP of Business Development for LinkAssure Link Building Services DBA Advanced Internet Marketing.

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