Q and A: How do we target our demographic when link building?

QuestionDear Kalena

You’ve said in your SEO 101 course to look into sites within the same industry when building links.  I have been able to talk my supervisor into letting me “play” with our company website and give her some feedback with the knowledge I have already.

One of the things I have found is a lot of broken links on our website so they are going to fix those but some of those partners will not reciprocate and post our website link on their site.  Do you find this quite common?

Also, some of the professional medical organizations we belong to will also not post our website link as they say it is against their rules.  If we just use general business directories, how do we know we’re targeting the demographics we want?  What do you suggest?



Hi Louisa

When link building, it’s not the number of links that is important, but the quality of those links. Reciprocal links are not your ultimate goal because one-way links are generally more valuable.

Unless there is a very popular site in your niche that won’t give you a link unless you link back, in my opinion you shouldn’t seek out reciprocal links and should instead be aiming for one-way incoming links to your site.

So for example, a one-way link from a medical related category on the JoeAnt Directory back to your site is generally worth much more in the eyes of Google than say 10 links from poorly trafficked sites in your industry or reciprocal links from low quality link farms. That’s because business directories such as JoeAnt, Business.com, Gimpsy and similar directories have a large audience and a long history so they have more *trust rank* in the eyes of Google.

So what you should be doing is seeking out links from sites with a similar medical theme, medical categories on trusted business directories and related sites that have a lot of traffic and preferably a high Google PageRank. One good method is to look at your major competitors and check their backlinks in Google to see what sites are linking to them and then approach those sites to see if they’ll link to you too. But remember to verify if those sites have a decent Google PageRank and suitable audience before pursuing a link.

Check these link building resources for more info:

How to Set Up a Link Building Campaign for a Web Site or Blog

How to Evaluate a Directory for Link Building

Link Building articles

Hope this helps!

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