In This Chapter
Discovering why links matter
Getting the easy links
Staying out of trouble
Creating link bait
Link building — getting other sites to link to yours — is critical to your search engine optimization efforts. However, many people ignore the rest of SEO and focus entirely on acquiring links. Link building is not the only component, and ignoring all the other stuff I discuss in this minibook, such as great copy, great code, and a well-structured site, in favor of link building is a mistake.
In this chapter, I explain why links matter, how search engines weigh them, the factors for quality links, and several tactics for building links to your site.
This chapter is very technical and detailed, so keep some perspective. I'm not suggesting that you spend the next two years writing link bait. I suggest that you do everything up to and including the suggestions in the "Leveraging Your Partners for Links" section. For everything after that section, read and learn. If you have time and a big budget, go for it. If you don't, take it as advice in case you're ever bedridden for a month with nothing to do but putter with your Web site.
To a search engine, every page on the Internet has a certain number of votes it can hand out to other pages through links. The exact number of votes each page has differs, depending on the site's overall SEO strength.
This voting concept first hit the search world in 1998, when Google ...