Outgoing Links - Quality Over Quantity
Outgoing links have been coming under fire since Google has proposed to ban and impose restrictions on ‘link farms’.
You can read more about it here PageRank - Why Worrying About It Won’t Make Your Website Rank Higher
This scenario is ominous. Let’s suppose you link to a website that ‘seems’ to be worthy. However, within a week you see that your visitors have reduced and that you’re receiving little or no traffic. You do a search for your webpage and you don’t see a listing when you use your keywords.
You decide to write to Google and you get a nice, although cryptic response that your website may have been participating in questionable practices by linking to a known ‘link farm.’
You enquire more and you find out the website in question. So you go through and delete all the external links that link to this site. You contact Google once more and after several months you see your website coming through on searches, yet no explanation as to the criteria used to place you back in the listings.
Sounds scary? It is. This scenario also happens every day. Since there are literally hundreds of thousands of new web pages and new websites a day, keeping the ones with quality content and punishing those that don’t follow the rules has become a taskmaster process.
How do you become one of the favoured and not punished?
- Don’t Buy Links
This may appear as a rather simple and easy answer, however let’s look at the logic. Why would you risk your business if Google is punishing those who use ‘link farms’? This is the same business that you spent months, maybe years working on and making the site as usable and valuable as possible. Google works on their algorithm with the purpose of indexing sites of value and that don’t spam.
- Don’t Have Outbound Links On Your Home Page
Your home page is a very valuable piece of real estate. This is the first web page that your customers, prospects and clients see first when they arrive at your website. The reason why you don’t want outbound links on the very first page is that your website value will actually decrease because you are saying, “Hey, nothing here to look at, that’s why I have to link out.”
- Open Your Outbound Links In A New Window
Some logic floating around is to have no outbound links at all. Although this may appear as the best way to insulate yourself and gain PageRank status, it fails to take into account that outbound linking may be very valuable. For example, a media website has some interesting and pressing news. You decide to write an article and link to that website. Well, if you are worried that visitors will click away, just open that URL into a new window. That way, visitors can read that information and stay on your website.
- Only Have Quality Outbound Links
Quality means from news websites, selected corporations, agencies or associations that place valuable information on their website and that you believe visitors to your website may also find valuable. If the information comes from a webpage that has ads placed all over it, you may question the status of the website or its true value. When trying to assess where you should get outbound links from, always remember to use your judgement. If in doubt, forget linking to that site.
- Maintain Quality Content
The reason why people visit your website is because they saw something of value or someone else recommended that your website offered something of value. Maintain the level of quality content and visitors will come to your website. Visitors will come to value your information and will actually promote that fact to other visitors. Combine this with quality outgoing links and you have a recipe for success.
Outbound links don’t have to a pariah and excluded from your overall search engine optimisation campaign. As long as you remember to use quality content, quality outbound links, open outbound links in a new window, don’t have outbound links on your home page and don’t buy links your success will be demonstrated and rewarded by more visitors and customers. Keep doing the things that have propelled you to your level of success: hard work and understanding these 5 points.
Freestart is committed to building your website. We provide this information to you, our valued customer because when you succeed, so do we. Contact us on 0844 774 7777 or click here to find out how your website can be optimised.