Five Myths About Link Building

April 11, 2018



There's a reason that link building is often touted as being one of the top strategies for gaining exposure online: it works. Unlike many other online marketing strategies, link building is a consistently reliable way to draw targeted traffic to a website. Like anything else, though, plenty of myths about link building are swirling around out there. In order to make the most out of your Internet marketing experience, you should educate yourself about the most common link building myths. By doing so, you can use link building to enjoy a more fruitful online marketing experience.

Dispelling the Top Five Link Building Myths

The Internet is awash in conflicting information about link building. Below, we highlight five of the most pervasive link building strategy myths, then cut them down to size. When you're through reading this article, you'll have a much firmer grasp on why link building continues to be one of the most effective online marketing techniques around.

Link Building Myth #1: You'll Always Get Dinged for Reciprocal Linking

Many online marketers are so wary of being penalized by Google that they miss out on incredible link building opportunities. It's natural to be a little gun-shy about ticking off the major search engines; after all, they have the power to make or break your site. Reciprocal linking can land you in hot water -- but not always. The difference between positive reciprocal linking and negative reciprocal linking is subtle, but real. In a nutshell, soliciting random blogs and other websites for reciprocal links tends to be frowned upon and could get you in trouble. "Spontaneous" reciprocal linking, though, isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Let's say that you discover another blog that links to yours. After paying it a visit, you realize that it's a very worthwhile site that has a great deal to offer the people who visit your own site. If you'd happily provide a link to the site under normal circumstances, it's perfectly okay to do so now. Just because the site already links to your own doesn't mean that it's off-limits. In this case, the two sites are sure to relate to one another in some way. Therefore, a major search engine isn't likely to view reciprocal linking with a raised eyebrow. In fact, the relevance of your two sites should enhance the link building in this instance.

Link Building Myth #2: Outbound Links Will Hurt Your Rankings

This second myth relates a little to the first one. Some blog owners are convinced that adding too many outbound links to their sites lowers their rankings with search engines. In addition to being wary of reciprocal linking, then, many online marketers steadfastly refuse to include many outbound links on their sites. To be sure, if the search engine algorithms detect that your site is awash in outbound links to irrelevant sites, you're going to be penalized. What about outbound links that are actually useful, though?

The number one goal of most major search engines is to return relevant, useful results to their users. Therefore, they tend to give priority to websites and blogs that users consider to be useful. If the outbound links on your site tend to be beneficial to the people who visit it, they are actually going to help improve your rankings. Furthermore, relevant outbound links can enhance your link building campaign. This is one of those link building myths that stymies online markers' progress, rather than enhancing it.

Link Building Myth #3: Links on High PR Sites Are the Only Ones That Matter

If you've zeroed in on high PR websites that you'd like to use to enhance your link building campaign, proceed with caution. All too often, people are so overzealous about building links on high PR websites that they fail to pay attention to the rankings of the actual pages where their links are published. Having links on high PR sites is less worthwhile if they are added to dark, dusty, forgotten pages. Targeting high PR sites is always smart, but be sure to dig a little deeper before moving forward. Also, remember that a natural link profile will include links from low and medium PR sites as well.

Link Building Myth #4: Try Emailing People and Asking for Links

I have not had much success with link begging. Unless you happen to already know the person who you're asking for a link, this is a waste of resources. It's just too unscalable and unproductive an activity to be spending time on. If you have someone who spends any time doing link building, consider focusing them on executing link baiting strategies or writing guest posts on authoritative blogs in your industry.

Link Building Myth #5: Links Are There to Stay

If someone promises you that the links that they're adding are "permanent," be suspicious. Resting on your laurels during a link building campaign is a surefire way to make it flounder. Link building is something that should never end. Links can become broken, site owners can remove them at will and entire websites can cease to exist. By continually working to build new links, you can spare to lose the ones that will inevitably go away. Out of all of the inane link building myths that are out there, this one is the easiest to dispel.

Putting too much stock in any of these prevalent link building myths can bring a link building campaign to a screeching halt. Sorting the truth from the lies can be confusing. At the end of the day, however, there are many ways to make a link building campaign work. Above all, remember to stick with link building strategies that are legit and above-the-belt. In the end, all of your hard work will pay off in spades.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/galleriajenesis/3364261357/

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Larry Kim

Larry Kim

Larry Kim is the founder of WordStream and CEO of MobileMonkey, a chatbot building platform.

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