Site Optimization > Offpage Optimization
How Many “Votes” does your site have?
Off-Page optimization is an important factor that must be considered when trying to get a website to rank well in the search engines. Off-Page Optimization in a word is “linking”, or more accurately “link trading”. Link trading is where 2 sites agree to place links to the other site for the purposes of building the “Importance of their site”. Back-Links are the websites and web pages that are linked TO your website. Each Link TO your website is like a “vote” that increases the importance of your website in the search engines. Though off-page optimization is much less complicated that on-page optimization there are still a few factors you must take into consideration when looking for reciprocal links to build the “importance” of your website. A few of these considerations would be PageRank, link placement, and who you are trading links with.
Page Rank is a system developed by Google to help determine the importance of web pages indexed by its search engine spiders. It also helps determine how often pages are indexed and the importance of other pages linked together. Google actually provides a tool bar to view the page rank of any website. You can get this tool by clicking here- http://toolbar.google.com/?promo=mor-tb-en
The page rank of each site you visit is displayed on a scale of 1 – 10. The higher the rank the more “voting power” the site has. For example one link from a 5/10 page rank site may be worth more than 20 links on 0/10 page rank sites. When you are link trading to build the “importance” of your website, it is good to trade links with pretty much website that is willing to swap links with you (with the exception of link farms- which we will discuss a little further down the page). It not only benefits your site but it benefits the sites you linking to on YOUR website. Keep in mind as well, if other sites are looking to trade links with you and they do not have a page rank, they will have a good page rank soon, because they are actively building the importance of their site. As their page rank moves up it benefits you as well.
It is important how others link to your site as well. First off when you trade links you want to be sure that after you have linked to someone else’s site that they have reciprocated a link back to your website. Secondly, you want to make sure they have linked in the proper way. Text links are going to be the most beneficial for the ranking of your site for particular key words. You want the link to say whatever the keywords are your are trying to come up for in the search engines for example- Miami FL Real Estate normally you want to avoid using your name or company in these links unless that is what you want your site to come up for in the search engines. Once your site is ranking well for the keywords you want, you can change what you want sites to link to you with to start ranking well for other words.
Who you are trading links with?
Who you trade with can be a factor in how fast you move up in the search engines as well. Some sites will require you to place a link on your home page TO their website. Typically the homepage has the best page rank of any of the other pages of your website. In return, they will stuff you one of the loaded link pages which will pass very little page rank and is not usually of a great benefit to you. When first starting out with your link trading it may be necessary to resort to these lop-sided trades, but as your page rank gets higher you can hold out for even trades. Normally the best places to look for link trades are websites in your local community and even other out of state realtors who are eager to raise their page rank as well.
Link Farms are definite problem you want to be sure to steer clear of. Link Farms are companies or websites that are set-up for sole purpose of flooding links to a site to skew search engine rankings. Automatic linking programs and businesses set-up promising over night results is normally companies to steer clear of. This normally will get sites to rank well for a short time before they are penalized and removed completely from the search engines.
The only legitimate way to rank well overnight is Pay-Per-Click Programs.