How to go train spotting on the net

Posted on October 25, 2010


Renton in TrainspottingTrain spotting may not be the hip, happening pastime it once was. (Okay, it never was that, but the Danny Boyle film of the Irvine Welsh novel did at least make people wonder what it was). There is a kind of train spotting you can do on the net that’s about as glamorous as standing by a railway track watching for trains, but it’s something every website owner should do.

We’re talking here about link-spotting. Most site owners that know about SEO will be aware of the importance of links. What a lot aren’t aware of is the difference between links. Knowing your high-class, rare locomotives from your common diesel engines can really get you places on the net.

For example:

Directory links. Most of these are your run-of-the-mill specimens, like a grotty First Great Western regional carriage. Having these in your profile won’t count for much unless they’re of the rarer, well-respected type, so it’s important to check their backgrounds.

Industry links. Links are all about reputation. Getting good industry links requires a little research and a lot of observation. Watch other sites to see who’s popular.

Authority links. These are the equivalent of a gorgeous antique steam train – in other words, very hard to acquire. Persistence is key.

Unlike train spotting, link-spotting doesn’t come with rabid link fans. Learning to spot good links is one of those SEO jobs you just need to do for yourself. Your search engine optimisation company should be able to put you on the right track.

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