At its essence, the world wide web is a bunch of pages, most of which are linked together, like an unimaginably large spider’s web.

I’m sure you are familiar with the way the web works, but I’m writing this article to reinforce the importance of linking.

How popular is your site?

If someone links to your site it means the page they’re linking to is worth telling people about; this link could be on Facebook, Twitter or some other social network, or it could be on a blog post they’ve written or a page on which they list useful resources.

Search engines use a whole host of criteria to decide how good your site is and, therefore, how high to rank it when someone searches for keywords that it contains, and links leading to your site are a massive factor!

How do I get links?

The best way to get links is to write great content on a great website that people want to tell everyone about!

Promote your new blog post, testimonial, gallery entry, revamped/rewritten page or new look site on Facebook, Twitter and any other social networks you maintain. This will increase your website’s exposure and hopefully win you a few shares, likes, retweets and so on.

Your website

Your website is like a miniature web– important pages like your home page, about page and contact page are linked together by your main navigation; secondary navigation paves the way to less vital, but still very useful pages like your privacy policy, terms and conditions and so on; links throughout the text of each page take your visitors to various useful places within and outside of your site.

Keeping your site’s internal linking nice and tidy is very important! Not only will it let your visitors know that there are more pages that are worth a look, but it tells search engines there’s same thing, which they’ll give you points for!

Linking out

Whenever you reference someone or something it’s a good idea to link out to them– it gives them a credit for their work as well as a little bit of a leg-up with Google and the other search engines.

What should a link look like?

By what your link looks like I mean what your website’s visitor will see. Not the link itself– that horrible looking “http://www.example.com/blah” bit with its forward slashes, colons, dots, dashes, hash symbols, question marks and all manner of other nasties– but the nice readable link that hides the actual working link.

So let’s start by covering what not to do: A link should never look like “click here” or something similar!

Instead, a link should be descriptive and if it’s part of a sentence it should be just that! Have a look at some of the links I’ve scattered throughout this article and that should give you an idea.

Value

It’s worth knowing that not all links are not made equal: some have more value than others.

A link from a brand new, little known website about a subject a long way from that or your business won’t be worth a lot.

On the other hand, a link to your site from the top blogger or online publication in your field will be very valuable indeed!

Go forth and link!

Links are what the web is built with, and they’re just as important to give as they are to receive.

So now that you know how to give the most value with your links, why not head to some of your blog posts and check that all of your sources are referenced with a link and that the links all read well!