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SEO Toolkit! - Part 11

Part 11 - Links and their effects on PR

As stated earlier, virtually any website at all can link to your page(s) without adversely affecting your PR. This is because generally you have no control over who links to your site. But the PR of the page(s) that link to your page(s) has a great deal of influence on your page's PR.

For example, if a webmaster decides to link to your page from a page on her site with a PR of 6, this will help your page's PR be higher than if she links to your page from a PR 4 page.

In other words, it isn't just how many links you have to your page, but also the "importance" of those pages that helps boost your PR. A dozen links from PR 6 sites is often better (at least for the sake of PR) than 100 links from PR4 sites. 

How do you determine a page's PR (even your own)? If you use Internet Explorer, you can download the Google Toolbar for free.

After you have downloaded and installed the Google toolbar, restart your browser. You should now see the toolbar near the top of the screen. Click the word Google on the left edge of the toolbar. Click Toolbar Options on the dropdown menu. Place a checkmark in the box beside PageRank Display. Now click the OK button at the bottom of the page. 

Your toolbar is now configured to display the PR value of the current page. On the right-hand side of the toolbar you will see the word PageRank.

Below the word PageRank is a bar that is either gray (no PR for the current page), all white (the current page has a PR of 0), or part white and part green. The more green in the bar the higher the PR.

If you place your mouse pointer over the bar under the word PageRank you will see the numerical value of the current page's PR.

And now, back to reciprocal linking. Your goal is to exchange links with as many quality websites as you can as quickly as you can. For our purposes, I'll define quality websites like this:
  • They have a PR of at least 5.

  • They aren't using hidden text, hidden links, doorway pages, etc. (No linking to a bad neighborhood, remember?)

  • The "theme" of their sites compliments yours and vice versa.
The theme of your link partners' websites is very important. PR is Google's estimate of the importance of your site. So your site will be deemed more important if a lot of quality websites in your same general field link to your site.

For instance, if your website sells custom made curtains, your theme would be "home decor". You should make an effort to exchange links with other "home decor" related sites, such as interior designers, landscapers, and sites that sell furniture.

Do not exchange links with a direct competitor however or you will lose sales to your competition. For example, if you sell wind chimes don't exchange links with another site that also sells wind chimes. Instead, exchange with a site that sells lawn furniture or other products that compliment yours without directly competing with you.

Set a goal of exchanging links with a minimum of 100 other websites that meet the above criteria and you'll be well on your way to a great Google listing.

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