I have already given some ideas about creating internal links with Link Building a Tutorial (Internal), (see I just created an internal link right there), but now we need to do the important task of creating External Links (i.e. links from other sites, that hopefully have a higher Page Rank than you). External links (hopefully) bring new readers to your site, and can increase your prestige and page rank, so you need to take this topic very seriously.
I have learned a lot of methods for building up external links from my web site THE Canadian Personal Finance Site (see I just created an external link for that site), some have worked well, others not so much, so let’s wander through some of the methods that seem to help out.
One way of getting links from external sites to your site, is by asking the external site owner to link to your site. This seems obvious, but it doesn’t happen often any more either. I rarely add links to my web sites from e-mails sent to me from sites I do not know about (sorry, if I linked to everyone who asked, I’d have a site of links and not much else). If the site owner doesn’t know of you, and does not know you, don’t expect them to link to your site, unless they are incredibly generous. You can try this method, but don’t expect a lot of success with it, unless you know other bloggers well.
Life is a Carnival
This is the obvious way to get external links and to build up your links to external sites as well, simply go to the Blog Carnival hub, find some carnivals that are in your category or topic space, and start submitting posts. Don’t worry that the carnival seems to have 125 posts on it, you are worried about the link, not about if anyone clicks on it (they most likely won’t). This is how I started building up links to my site, and it has worked really well early on.
Hosting a Carnival is really good for this kind of stuff too, because you link to many external sites, but typically those who are in the carnival are supposed to link back to your post as well, which will give you scads more external links into your sites. Hosting a carnival isn’t easy, and if you are a Newbie, the blog carnival owner may not be too enthused to have you host, but keep trying, it pays off.
Addendum: I am not as sold on the whole Carnival Concept these days, you can discount this one a great deal and read my article Blog Carnivals are Done
Best of Posts
Create your own carnival is another option, where you find the big sites in your category, and create a Weekly Best of Links post ( an example of this would be my Random Thoughts: Slash into Lent post). You end up creating outward facing external links, and if those sites see you linking to their content, they may do the same for you, not often, but it does happen.
Remember with these kind of posts, don’t include too many links, because folks just don’t click that many links on any site.
Big Social Media Sites
There are a few big Social Media sites that actually give you a link back from them, and if you are a newbie, their Page Rank is bound to be higher than yours, so having them link to you is good for you. A few of these sites include: Stumbleupon, Zoomit , Fwisp and others. These links are very useful to have, and more exposure in Social Media, means more eyes on your content, and possibly more folks linking to you as well (and more money to be made as well).
Mainstream media mentioning you will also cause an explosion of links too, but that is very much hit and miss as well, but more exposure in Social Media, increases the chances of this kind of lucrative exposure.
Get to know other bloggers in your field or in your city. Meet them face to face, or via Instant Messaging, because the larger your circle and network is, the more links you will end up with as well. It’s not easy to do this (don’t leave comments about how you’d like to get together with the author on web sites, that is just creepy), but you must try. Use Twitter or something like that and say you are in some city and looking for fellow bloggers to meet, you might be surprised who might answer (but also be careful, there are a lot of Trolls and Odd Folk out there too).
As with job hunting, networking is a key to building your site and links to your site.
So with these two tutorials, you should be able to start building your stature on the web with links both internal and external.