The Complete Guide to Link Building and SEO Techniques 2012: For Hubpages and Beyond
Building links is perhaps the most confusing and strenuous aspect of search engine optimization, whether you are promoting your articles here on Hubpages or working to build a solid base of traffic for your own website(s). If you've spent any time reading articles about SEO or how to promote your blog or website, then you probably noticed link building being mentioned as an absolute necessity if you hope to generate traffic through search engines without PPC (pay per click) advertisement, but it is doubtful that these articles actually provided you with any idea how to accomplish this.
The Google search engine released the "Panda" update earlier this year. This was the initial update that is meant to begin the transition of Google's algorithm to coincide with the blooming social internet. Still, building strong and relevant links to the webpage you are promoting is one of the most direct ways to increase your standing in a search result, ideally bringing your website to the first page of Google and other popular search engines for the keywords you are targeting.
This Entire Article has Been Revamped as of 12/15/2012 - see below for new info
Blog Carnivals and Link Submission Websites
A blog carnival is an event of sorts organized by a webmaster or group of webmasters. The creator will provide their desired topic or subject matter, as well as any other requirements they may have. Other webmasters and bloggers then submit a relevant link from their own site, collectively becoming a list of resources that the moderators of the carnival will then post onto their domain.
Probably the most popular website to host such a service, and using the domain is simple enough. Browse through the carnivals by category or by search, looking for carnivals that fall under the desired category and will be posting again soon (use the new edition column in the carnival search to check for upcoming posts).
There are also many websites that allow you to simply submit a link to be listed on their domain. People who are looking for an easy way to browse and find new websites on topics they enjoy regularly visit domains such as Stumbleupon and Digg to find their information.
Creating an account with Digg is extremely simple - you can even choose to sign in with your Facebook account for instant access. Simply click the submit link button located at the top of the page and paste your link, choosing a category and providing a brief summary or description of the content. Although the amount of viewers Digg receives is quite large, it is difficult to generate a large amount of traffic through Digg without a 'hot' or recently established topic. Still, this will build a solid link for your page and bring at least a few additional visitors directly.
Another extremely popular browsing tool, StumbleUpon allows it's users to "stumble" their way through articles submitted by others. After creating an account, go to the favorites section and click the add site button in the top right area of the screen. You will first be asked to submit the URL and a review of the page. After continuing to the next section, you will be given the opportunity to add a topic or multiple topics - you can select from the list or suggestions, or simply input your own keywords separated by commas.
Yet another link submission domain, Reddit uses a sub-reddit system instead of the topic method applied by the previous two domains. Here is an excellent explanation of how to use Reddit and sub-reddits.
Regularly submitting all of your new articles or pages to the previously mentioned domains is an easy way to get a solid link base started, but your efforts don't have to stop there.
Social Networks - Commenting - Forum Posting
Search engines are slowly working to put more reliance on the social networking aspects of the internet, and seeking out like-minded writers and webmasters can be a fun way to build an additional link base. Commenting on blogs or in forums is not exactly the best way to improve your ranking in the search results, but it will still have some effect. You can also bring some direct traffic to your site by leaving interesting comments or posts that entice readers to see what else you have to say.
Use Google's blog search, Technorati, Blog Search Engine and similar directories to look for articles or websites that discuss a topic or keyword phrase that you are focusing on. Searching for forums that cover the topics your webpages focus on is another way to reach out to like-minded individuals and link back to your own pages. Remember that the ideal link will use your targeted keyword or key phrase as it's anchor text (<a href="http://www.yourlinkhere.com">Insert Anchor Text Here</a>).
Links gained through social networks will have an increasingly larger value as search engines continue to evolve, but expect to get about the same results in the search engines from social networks as you would from forums or comments. Still, there is a huge potential for increased awareness and traffic generated by creating a growing presence in social networks.
Including links on your website or posts that allow the readers to "like" your Facebook page or "tweet" your Twitter account is a good way to slowly build a following. This following can then be used much like a newsletter, allowing you to update your readers and fans with any new events or additions. Remember to encourage people to tell their friends about you on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Also keep in mind that constant updates will prevent people from removing you from their contact list due to stagnation.
Guest Posting and More Direct Link Building
After you submit all of your pages to the directories and do all of the promoting there is to be done through social networks and commenting or forums, you probably think that your done, right? wrong. Building additional external links to your site by submitting original content to article directories such as HubPages and E-zine Articles is a good way to build a link base for your domain or page. E-zine Articles will require that the link be placed in the resources section, whereas Hubpages will generally allow you to place the link anywhere in your content as long as it is a valid resource to the information at hand.
Many blogs and websites accept guest posts and will usually allow you to place a link or two within your content or as a resource link if the article you provide them is of sufficient quality. Seeking out these websites and submitting a unique article on a topic that will include the keywords you are targeting is a great way to build links. Remember that you never want to have duplicate content appear anywhere on the internet, so try to always write unique articles and summaries that include your keywords whenever possible.
Postrunner is a service owned by The Keyword Academy. This internet program essentially allows webmasters to include their domain into a list of sites that will accept guest posts, and allows writers or link builders to easily create a unique article and submit it directly to the domain of their choice. Every article you submit can contain up to two links using anchor text, and 300 words is usually the minimum requirement for most websites listed. Unfortunately, a monthly membership fee of about $30 is required in order to gain access to this service.