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Link Popularity and Search Engines

Link popularity, or link earning, has always been a ranking factor on web search engines. Here is link-building information that all SEO, usability, and UX pros should know.

Link popularity image

Link development is a process that search engine optimization (SEO) professionals have used long before Google was invented. Below is information that anyone involved in website promotion should remember:

In This Article

Link development overview

Link popularity, or more appropriately link development, is a building block of successful search engine optimization (SEO). Without it, few websites receive qualified search engine traffic over time.

Link development is a form of validation. Search engines try to validate that what you say about your own content is true.

Many online marketing specialists believe that link popularity is simply obtaining as many links as possible. Always remember that the quality of a link holds more "weight" than a quantity of links.

You will get better results in the search engines if you have earned links from websites that are authoritative and trustworthy.

Quality vs. quantity of links

To develop popularity for your website, you should submit your site to the most visited nice directories and industry portal sites. Thomas Register is an example of a niche directory for manufacturing companies.

Also, to further develop link popularity, you should consider sites/directories that are very industry specific, such as for a health-related site.

Even more important, it can help your search engine traffic if your site is reviewed by a directory that is associated with a search engine. To be accepted into a major directory, we recommend that your site have content that can show credibility in your field.

A tips section, resources section, or "how-to" pages can showcase your credibility on your products or services. Other digital content assets can include:

Types of Digital Content Assets

  • Reference
  • FAQs, Q&As
  • Coupons
  • Articles
  • Checklists
  • Fact sheets
  • Guides
  • Quizzes
  • Comparisons
  • White papers
  • Tools
  • Infographics
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Spreadsheets
  • Presentations
  • Links & resources
  • Bibliographies
  • Games
  • Humor
  • Audio files (podcasts)
Dictionaries image Up graph image Documents image


Click popularity

Obtaining links from other websites is not enough to obtain long-term results on both the search engines and directories. People have to actually click on those links to your website and browse your website. AND they need to return to your website when they see the quality content, products, and/or services that you offer, i.e. the usability of your website.

That is the definition of "popularity" according to the major search engines and directories. Other terms for it are "click" popularity or "click-through" popularity.

Therefore, both link popularity and click-through popularity are essential for obtaining optimal search engine placement.

Remember, too, a search engine position is not permanent since the search engine companies change their algorithms all of the time.

Being listed in directories and other sites can significantly drive traffic and sales, particularly if your site is listed in specialized directories (health, financial, manufacturing, and travel, for example).

Link development serves multiple purposes. It can drive traffic and sales to your website. It can also help your search engine rankings.

Link development resources

Related articles

If you liked this link development tip, here are more links to related SEO tips and articles from Omni Marketing Interactive:

You can also read our articles from other online publications.


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If you have any questions about Omni Marketing Interactive's search engine optimization (SEO), website usability, information architecture (IA), or web design services, please call us at 847-426-4256.