How To Structure Your Links For Powerful Results
Many web publishers, bloggers and Hubbers don't really pay much attention to their link structures and that can be a very critical failure. It is important to be educated about link structuring to maximize your results and profit. After all, we're not blogging for our health!
The position on any given page of links is very important. The best place is always in the main body content of the page which is a far superior position than in the footer or sidebars. A link which is inline with text is the most powerful of all, and has significant advantages over a freestanding link in a box by the side of something that the reader is really interested in following.
Although there are thousands of pages with statistics showing how popup and traveling box links are exceptionally effective at driving traffic, my personal opinion is that you should never ever ever ever use them. There are very few web elements that will turn off a majority of readers more than trying to read an article or blog while there is some strange flashing box sliding across the text they are trying to read. Just as bad is the huge ad box which flops open to cover up most of the page and has a CLOSE X element so completely disguised as part of the layout, or even right off the box, that it's impossible to find! Some of the largest and busiest sites use these horrible tactics and although I am very certain that they will swear by their positive effect on their bottom line, my bottom line is that you will always incorporate extremely invasive page elements like this at your peril. After all, a reader who gets annoyed at the way your links are structured is certainly not going to be in a big hurry to return to your content, only to be imposed upon again!
The best form of link is in the form of text, as it is relatively simple to manipulate the ALT attribute of an image link so that it presents false information to the Google algorithms, and you can be assured that Google is very aware of this form of manipulation. Anchor text is a key element of search algorithms since the text says what it says and it can't be altered. That is also why the search algorithms will discount any text which is in the same or a similar color to the background of the page. This was a trick used to keep certain text invisible from readers but would get picked up by the search bots. That option is now long gone as the technology has advanced to the point that the colors are compared and anything that is unreadable is discounted.
HTML is far from the only type of page that you can get links for. There are a large and growing number of very popular and highly Page Ranked multimedia and alternative content sites who will be happy to link to your content, whether it be .mp3, .avi or even .pdf.
It is important to review the types of links which are already present on the page where you will be placing your inbound link. This form of analysis is called Co-Citation and it translates into the fact that your site will be associated with the other sites which are getting their outbound links on the same page. If these other co-cited links are to high quality sites, then the value of your link in the middle of these will rise proportionately.
If you go onto tagging sites, then only tag the related sites that have directly relevant subject matter to your own site. Don't try to push the envelope on this one or you may find that you will attract a significant amount of negative attention.
Pay Per Click (PPC) is an excellent link building tool for general exposure, but naturally this only applies if you can afford it. Do not get in over your head with expensive PPC programs as you may end up finding that your ROI is going to be marginal or even negative in some cases. No point spending $1,000 to make $100, but you'd be surprised how many web publishers do that every day.
AJAX is no longer only famous for being a cleaning powder, it is now the hottest feature on the internet. It is a technological wonder which should have been present on the Web from Day One. We have gotten accustomed to having a whole page reload when we make a selection of whatever type, even if only a very small amount of that data needs to be refreshed. AJAX does away with all that, but it is not exactly user friendly to program into your site. If you have the expertise and/or know someone who does, you would be well advised to AJAX your site as much as possible. Web 2.0 surfers love AJAX and they will reward you for your technological vision with linkage. You may also want to adopt CSS's hybrid fixed and liquid format which allows you to maintain a precise tabled look in the center of your frame while the rest "floats" according to varying monitor resolution. (Are you reading HubPages programmers... I'd sure like to read my Hubs in the middle and not on the far left side of my widescreen monitor!) Keep in mind that 1024 x 768 is the average these days and 640 x 480 and even 800 x 600 are museum features in an age when there are quite a few enthusiasts viewing the Web on 1920 x 1600 or even 2560 x 1600 pixel resolutions!
RSS feeds are a good news and bad news situation. If you have really quality and updated content, then you may have some success in getting your RSS feed syndicated on some relatively high Page Ranking sites. The drawback is that many of those syndicators will not provide links back to you, which will leave you with a potentially successful RSS feed which is not generating the amount of linkage you would like.
It is important that you think carefully about structuring your links for maximum benefit. A little work can pay off very handsomely right into your bank account!
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