Links and Value
Linking has been a long disputed SEO tactic and methodology. Google began as a back linking strategy called “Back-Rub” When you think about it. It really was and still is a great method of measuring the value of a site, or page. In its purest form it is really a complement to share a link or send away your surfers to another site.
What does a link cost?
I do a lot of linking for my SEO for my clients. No two clients are alike. Every client’s needs are different, every client’s site looks and feels different, every client want to achieve something slightly different with their site. However, almost always … without exception I include some sort of link management program.
What does a link cost? And what are they worth. This is the primary question I have been considering for a few weeks now. I recently had a company approach men and offer to partner with my firm to sell their linking program. My cost would only be $100 dollars per link. Yes you read that right $100 per link.
After I stopped laughing I had to ask them why so much. The began by explaining to me that they only offered links from very reputable .edu extensions. The high cost comes from the relationships that they have built with these stately institutions like Harvard and Yale. Although I may possibly be convinced that a link for “Harvard.edu” has greater juice than one from “bobs-snow-cone-shop.biz” I hardly think I would spend $100 for just one link.
Links to consider
Still I was very curious. I do preach and sell the value of quality links. I am a firm believer in linking. And more importantly the links I like come from quality reputable sites with relevant content and both good page ranking and high quality content themselves. Still what is the value of 1 link from and .edu is it worth 10, 20 or 50 of my well thought out links? What would the anchor text say? And how on earth would you, or could you afford any number of generic .edu links? I generally like to use around 20% generic, I have some colleges that would argue that as many as 80 or 90% generic links look more natural.
After much deliberation I really don’t think a link from the Harvard chess club will have more value than a well thought through, nicely manage quality linking campaign. Links from pages that rank nicely themselves, with both quality relevant and generic links. And specifically from content than adds something to the linking pages or conversation. And most importantly I will not be spending $100 for just one link any time soon. And most importantly what happens when the linking provider graduates?