This title looks backwards because we always see “Link Building” but don’t often see the definition of “building link relationships”.
There is a particularly good article about the basics of online small business development. Matt McGee’s most recent article, “Meet the Press, Talking SEO’s” provides a good example of an online small business combining some SEO basics, “How to get started”, and another important element, Search Engine Marketing ; you have to promote your site!
The latter is most important because, as I mention to an artist/client the other day, we now have to promote your site so that people can find your work. There are thousands of websites going up every day so you need to have a strategy and action plan to build your web traffic and ultimately your sales.
I went on to discuss some of the more traditional marketing methods that could help promote his business website, including: making direct contact with art companies and seeing if there was some value in having a link relationship. Without going into detail on link building methods, (there are some great resources further on in this article) I rather see link building as an extension of relationship building…..or link relationships.
Having been involved in a few business Startup’s one of things that websites have in common is that you need to reach out and build the key relationships that will be the foundation for your business later on. The parallel analog of link relationships to Relationship building, (often used when referencing sales or business development) is that in order to build good, deep links, you need to represent a value to the website owner who is being requested to link to your site. While this seems simple enough I thought it was worth a few words since I have had to sift through an unseemly amount of search garbage discussing all sorts of methods of building links in order to build traffic. People quite often seem to look for the easy route or short cut which in the end is never long lasting or worth the effort.
One clear strategy I find useful and valuable is to provide good article content that is relevant to the target market of the business you are reaching out to. In other words if you have some good stuff and it can help the person you have called or emailed then there is good chance he will link to you. Put in sales terms, if you identify the need of the website owner, he is much more likely to buy. And if you haven’t identified the need then don’t waste your time or his/hers.
In the end, it will take longer, but I find if you stick with common business sense and focus on building quality link relationships with an objective, strategy and action plan you will end up with more solid long lasting links and sites promoting you and building your business.
Here is a list of my Top 12 Link Building Tools.
A couple of good articles to help you get; A comprehensive and fast start to link building:
131 Legitimate Link Building Strategies: This is a bit dated but a very good read put together by some well known link building authorities.
101 Ways to Build Link Popularity: This more recent link building list by Seo Book gives good straight forward easy to read information you can apply very easily today.