Saturday, September 4, 2010

Don't Forget about Link Building

This past summer my MBA Internet Marketing class learned about search engine optimization (SEO) and the fundamental importance of including relevant keywords in page titles, h1 tags and throughout a website in a human readable manner. This is a proven SEO technique but some sites need to do more, especially if there's a lot of competition vying for the attention of search engines and users. Another technique that we discussed is called link building.

Link building is the process of getting links to your web property (be it a blog, domain, whatever) placed on other -hopefully well-visited and relevant- domains. We used this technique to "promote" this blog by having students link back to this blog from their own personal blogs and sites. Unfortunately, since many students chose to build their blogs on blogger/blogspot, I don't think we got the link building "juice" we were looking for. Nonetheless, we were able to get the top spot on all three search engines for our chosen keywork "e-marketingclass", even bumping a consulting company with the same domain name.

Since link building requires modifications to websites that are not under your control, you'll need to reach out to bloggers/webmasters who manage sites related to yours and ask them (politely of course) to include a link to your site. Of course you'll offer a link to theirs in return (if you aren't already linking to their site) to reciprocate.

To demonstrate (and hopefully improve my personal websites relevance for certain keywords), I suggest you take a look at a site for a marketing professor in Buffalo, NY. This is a fairly new site so my visibility on search engines for keywords such as "marketing professor Canisius College" and "internet marketing professor" is still a work in progress.

Next I'll begin integrating some microsites (custom landing pages) to demonstrate how these can be used to for SEO as well as paid campaigns...stay tuned.