The main purpose of Search Engine Optimization is to get a website to the top of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) for a particular keyword, and it goes without saying that the Internet is a very competitive environment. How do you get yourself ranked on the first page of Google for a keyword such as “interior designer” when Google Displays more than 4 million results? It is not enough to write highly targeted metatags for your website anymore – search engines have matured rapidly over the last few years and are using far more advanced algorithms than before. It’s time to consider Link Popularity – a strategy and method that will help your website rank higher on search engines and increase traffic to your website for keywords selected.

So what is Link Popularity? Link Popularity works very much in the same way as word-of-mouth does. If someone refers a good movie, you’re more likely to see it than a movie you’ve never heard of. Link Popularity works the same way; in a nutshell, it is the number of sites that link to your own website. When search engines see that other sites are linking to your site, it will boost your website ranking based on the rationale that only good and informative sites are referred by other sites. After all, no one recommends bad websites (or movies), right? (Well, this point can be argued but let’s save this for another day!)

But like we’ve said before, follow the Quality over Quantity standard. While it helps if many sites link to your site, search engine spiders also take into account the quality of the links that point to your site in the first place, such as looking at what links your referring website are being referred by. I know – it’s confusing – but all of these small components contribute to your Link Popularity. So make sure that you not only have a high number of links referring your website, but that they are also of good quality.

There are a number of ways to build your Link Popularity through:
- Directory Submissions: adding your website to relevant directories
- Article Submissions: writing articles about your products/services and submitting them to article directories
- Social Directory Submissions: submitting your website link to numerous social media sites
- Reciprocal Linking: You and another website agree to publish each other’s links on your websites

- Blogging & contributing to social media forums and other related forums

Once your website is referred by other sites, this will also drive traffic to your site. The benefits of link-building to increase your Link Popularity should be every business/website’s goal: to increase brand awareness and improve your organic search engine results. Here are some tools that can help you with Link Popularity:

1.       Link Popularity Checker – This tool tells you how many websites are linking to your website in terms of search engines.

2.       Reciprocal Link Checker – This tool helps check that your link partners are linking back to your website. It also determines the anchor text used by your link partners to link to your website

3.       Outbound Links – This tool shows outgoing links from a given domain. They are separated in external and internal links categories

4.       A very useful and easy way to see what websites are linking back to your website is to type in “link:www.yourdomainname.com” into any search engine. You will then see what websites are linking back to your website.

Link Popularity is a great way to enhance your probabilities of getting ranked higher in search engines. Remember that while Link Popularity will increase traffic to your site as more websites refer you, it is up to you to ensure your site is full of qualitative content and information so users find it helpful themselves.