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The importance of relevancy when buying incoming text links for your web site
It has been common knowledge for several years now, particularly among the Search Engine Optimization community, that link popularity has a significant effect upon the positioning of your web site with the various search engines – particularly Google.
The theory or thought behind this is that the more people that recommend your site by providing a link to it from their own site, then the more valuable the information must be on that site. Makes sense don’t you think? It’s like a vote of confidence in the target site.
However, when this became general knowledge it spawned a whole new industry, dedicated to providing hundreds of links to web sites with link exchange clubs and paid linking companies etc. At that time it did not matter where the link came from or if the site providing the link had anything to do with the target web site – just as long as there were as many links as possible to your own web site.
As it turned out, this thinking was flawed.
On March 31, 2005, Google made public the contents of their filing with the United States Patent Office, which revealed many of the secrets of the Google algorithm (or method) of determining the true link popularity of a site, and also many other important determining factors. These details confirmed the importance of link popularity to Google, but also put some important qualifiers on those incoming links. It was no longer the sheer volume of links that mattered but the quality of those links!
And one of the more significant measures of link popularity for Google is the relevancy of those links. For instance, a site with thousands of unrelated links is not going to help you one little bit if that site now adds a link to your site – in fact Google is smart enough to figure out that the link, most likely, has nothing at all to do with the value of the content on your site. So why should that link improve your search engine positioning?
However, if the site providing the incoming link to your site is a well respected site (good PageRank), and the contents of both sites are relevant (travel site to travel site for instance), then Google will assign high marks to that incoming link. So when you buy text links with your hard earned cash, one of the major considerations is the relevancy of those links – the contents of both sites and even the relevancy of the anchor text used as the link.
There are other considerations besides relevancy of course in Google’s method of calculating link popularity. These include the number of links, their quality, anchor text factors and even the speed with which links are accumulated, but more on that in the next article.
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