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Establishing Your External SEO

external SEO
External SEO, or backlinks, helps drive your upward in the search engines

You have written a lot of great content, and you have optimized your site for internal SEO, but you still aren’t seeing the traffic you would like. That’s because your work isn’t done yet. In order to really move up the ranks in Google, you need to prove that you’re a source of accurate and reliable information. This means other websites must link back to your website. That’s right; you’ve become a source of information for someone else’s research.

External SEO Work

External SEO work, usually just called backlinks, can come about in a few different ways. Here are how I find backlinks to my website.

Guest Blogging – As a writer, this is easy for me to do. I have a wealth of information stored in my head, and I have the entire internet at my disposal to do research. So if I want to get another link or two out there for my website, I pitch a guest article to a blog or site that has a high page rank. In exchange for some of my time creating content for their site, I get a backlink to my own (and often I will put a blurb on my own giving a backlink to their site as well). It’s a win-win-win all around, especially if you get paid for the content you provide.

Forums – The internet was once packed full of forums. However, those sites have largely given way to other forms of social interaction like Facebook. But these places do still exist, and they are a great way to gain exposure for your site. Join a forum that is related to your interests, and put a link to your website in your signature.

TumblrTumblr has risen to popularity as a sort of online journal where everyone shares what everyone else has already posted. Even though it can be a bit cheesy, it is a great way to promote your website. Start your Tumblr account about a topic you love (I have one for woodworking), and then write content for your site that pertains to that topic. Link to your Tumblr from your site and link to your site from your Tumblr.

Adsense Sharing – There are a lot of sites out there that offer revenue sharing. You write your content, post it to their site, and they give you between 50% and 80% of what the ads make. It’s a good deal if you like writing for free; it’s a terrible deal if you’re actually trying to make money online. I use a couple of these sites to gain backlinks for myself, and for websites that I write for.

Social Media – Promoting your work is a great way to not only drive direct traffic, but also to get backlinks. Now here is where we run into some technical details. Social media is almost always “nofollow” links. This means they are not ranked and categorized by the search engines. However, they do help boost your external SEO.

 Dofollow vs. Nofollow Backlinks

When backlinks became a part of external SEO, search engines quickly ran into the problem of spammers. Those running a less-than-scrupulous website would quickly dart around the web posting spam comments wherever they could. A simple program could help them post thousands upon thousands of comments every single day, landing them backlinks, and helping drive up their ranks in the search engines. Fortunately those who develop Search Engine Optimization quickly found a solution. Backlinks are now ranked as dofollow or nofollow. A dofollow link is worth a whole lot more than a nofollow link. Social media and most comments you post are going to be nofollow, other places will likely be dofollow. To tell which is which, right-click on the link and “inspect element.” If you see “rel=nofollow” it’s a nofollow link. If you don’t see that, then it’s safe to assume the link is dofollow.

 Optimizing Your Searches

Search engine optimization isn’t just about throwing a bunch of stuff on your website and hoping people find you. It’s about strategically planning your content, providing the right internal SEO tags and descriptions, and showing the online world that you know what you’re talking about with your external SEO, or backlinks. When you’re first starting out, you will have to reach out to others to provide backlinks to your site (through the methods I described above). But as you become popular, other people will start to refer to your website as a reliable source, giving you’re the backlinks instead of you asking for them.

Again, if you would rather not worry about this, and just focus on the things you do best; my entire business is made up of writing keyword rich content, and search engine optimizing your site. Send me an email to learn more about my website content development strategies and find out what I can do for you.

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