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Moz’s 2015 Search Engine Rankings Study shows links as one of the highest contributors to Google’s search results.

Link building is a valuable online marketing strategy for businesses to utilize. Effective implementation boosts businesses’ online rankings and increases audience reach. The art of link building continues to change with time. At one point, inbound links were extremely valuable, and businesses responded by purchasing links in bulk. This black hat link-building method is now frowned upon by Google and buying links only secures you a spot in SEO jail – making it impossible for customers to find you online.

To create a valuable link building strategy for your business, you need to first understand the three most popular types of links – outbound, internal, and incoming.

Outbound

Outbound links are links on your website to another domain. Some businesses assume outbound links are not beneficial because they take visitors away from your website. This assumption is false. Outbound links offer significant benefits to businesses:

  • Help define your purpose. Search engines gain a better understanding your website’s purpose when you link to other relevant and high-quality blogs or websites.
  • Boost relationship building. Outbound links are a great way to “meet” other thought leaders in your niche market. These links act as a conversation starter by making thought leaders aware of your business and increase the chance they will link to your website in the future.
  • Increase website trust/quality. Search engines consider websites with outbound links to more valuable and trustworthy.
  • Increase visitors. Linking to blogs or websites with a similar customer base helps increase the chances for new visitors.

Internal

Internal links are links from one of your website pages to another page on your website. Internal links are commonly overlooked by businesses with little link building knowledge. They are one of the easiest link building strategies to implement because you have full control over creating the links. Internal links improve the SEO strength of your website by:

  • Simplifying navigation. Internal content links guide visitors where they need to go for more information on a specific topic. This increases the length of time they are on your website and increases the chances they become a customer.
  • Provides a path for spiders. Spiders roam websites to gain a better understanding of their purpose. Internal links help guide them from one page to another and confirm that the content on each page is relevant to a specific niche market.
  • Improves page authority. Internal links spread ranking power through all pages on a website. This gives each page a better opportunity to show in search results.

Incoming

Incoming links (aka inbound or backlinks) are links from an outside domain to your website. These links are extremely valuable in your overall SEO strength. Websites with high-quality inbound links:

  • Rank higher in search results. Search engines consider websites with these links to be valuable. These websites appear high in search results.
  • Receive more visitors. The high ranking leads to more website traffic/visitors.

Links continue to lead in SEO importance. Create a valuable link building strategy today to help boost your SEO strength and increase your online visibility.