When it comes to doing link building, what most people do is sent all those links to their home page. Here’s what I mean by home page:
And then this would be an inside page:
Sending links there (getting other websites to link to your home page) is fine (if you do it how I say in my book) but you could be doing more.
Links on the Web
Side note time!
It’s called “The Web” because of the links made between pages. If you map out how one page on one website links to another page on another website, you get these lines everywhere and it looks like a spider web.
The first website building software I used was this terribly simple program from AOL called AOLPress (or GNNPress or NaviPress – they liked to change the name of it often). One cool thing about that program is that it would show you a site map view which showed the links from page to page. It was pretty cool.
I found an image of how that looked (source: wwwdh.cs.fau.de):
Spread the Love Around
You can send the majority of your links to your home page and then the “link juice” power spreads from the home page throughout the website. The most power goes to pages that the home page links to and then some power goes to pages linked from those pages and so on.
But also consider linking to other, key pages of your website. You want to do this because your home page can’t possibly rank for every search term – this is simply because it can’t be the most relevant page for lots of searches – especially if there isn’t much text on the home page.
For example, if you sell shoes and your home page has some images and some items for sale, it can’t possibly be the best result for all of these keyword searches:
- women’s shoes
- men’s shoes
- children’s shoes
- tennis shoes
- athletic shoes
- (and so on)
You’re going to have pages on your website that concentrate on each of these keywords, right? We call these specialized pages “landing pages” because you want people to land there for that keyword.
If you have a store/shopping cart on your site, then your category pages will be the landing page. If your website is about the services you provide, then you’re going to have one, main page about that service, right?
And this brings up another point… don’t have one page on your website that lists all the services you do and think that you have it all covered. You don’t. If you’re Google, how do you classify that one page? It has too much stuff on it and from their point of view, it’s all over the place. They’re going to find other websites that will be better results to give people. Have a main page but make sure you link to separate pages (child pages) that go into a lot more detail about each service you offer. Those pages will be your landing pages and they’ll be much more likely to rank and get you traffic.
The point here is that you should be sending relevant links to not just your home page but make sure you purposely set up landing pages.
Here’s a good resource I found about this topic. She explains how to send more links to your About Us page in order to rank your website higher:
Building Links to Your “About Us” Page (searchenginewatch.com)
The key is to have unique and relevant info on your About Us page. If you don’t have a hook or a story, you aren’t going to be very successful with this most likely. Everyone likes a good story. Although I did mention some ways to intentionally go after links to these pages, one of the things I like best about a good About Us page is that the naturally generated links tend to be exactly that…natural. People don’t tend to link to these pages with over-optimized keywords, which is a huge selling point for me.
And I love her point about telling a story on your About Us page. People like stories, so tell your story and you’ll get that emotional connection with your website visitors. Emotion is stronger than logic, so use it.
Even on my website, a lot of traffic goes to my About Me page. People want to find out who the writer is and this only makes sense. When you meet someone new, you want to find out their back story to get some context and find out more about who they are. You know your story but your website visitor don’t, so tell them.
Go Into “Beast Mode”… Use Silos
An advanced SEO technique is called page silos. This goes into website structure. I’ve tried this and it flat out works. I rarely see websites set up this way but they rank extremely well if you set up your website this way. Keeping it set up this way takes some work and discipline and quite honestly, this technique doesn’t create websites that are super friendly (easy) to use. That’s why I think this isn’t seen to much but if you can even do this half way, you’ll have an advantage.
I’m not going to spell it all out here (because the topic is huge) but there’s a great resource below that goes into it:
SEO Siloing: How to build a website silo architecture (bruceclay.com)
Basically, you have categories of topics and then link from one to the next, passing that “link juice” I was talking about. If you load pages up with YouTube videos and links to high quality websites and then send links to this kind of website, your link juice goes on steroids and the website turns into a powerhouse.
It comes down to carefully planning your content and doing your keyword research. There’s work involved but it’s worth it.
Don’t be afraid to link to your About Us page or other landing pages on your website to help equal out the strength that each page has. Remember to beef up your content, tell your story and make that emotional connection.
The best thing you can do for SEO is write more and more great content.