If you’ve performed web site optimization for search engines yourself or have been researching how some sites rank well and others don’t, you know the importance of links.
In fact, links were a big piece of what Feedster used to rank the top 500 blogs. A quick check on Marketleap’s Link Popularity tool shows 90,927 links to my company Online Marketing blog. (oops, there’s another one)
Many of those links were achieved through competitive research and directory listings. Once the site gained momentum, people link to it without me asking just by creating new, useful content.
To gain linking momentum efficiently it’s most effective to use tools. One very promising tool that was just launched yesterday by Aaron Wall is the Backlink Analysis tool. This is a client side software tool (you need to download it) that you can use to quickly identify not only all the backlinks of your competitors, but also many other useful attributes of those links so you can more effectively determine which links to go after. This tool is in it’s first stages, so I guess you could call it a beta. But its feature set compares to other tools like Optilink which cost a few hundred dollars. This tool is FREE.
An effective link building program focuses on gaining links that might naturally happen, just more strategically and at a slightly faster rate. Tools like the Backlink Analysis tool can give you the information you need to link smarter. Long term, the best linking strategy is through useful content. However, to help build the awareness of your site, you can build link momentum with smart tools.