By Peter Kent

Links are valuable and how they can help boost your position in the search engines. But there’s lots to remember, so here’s a general summary you can use to get started:

  • Links from sites related to yours are often more valuable than links from unrelated sites. (Because the relevancy software is almost certainly imprecise, this isn’t always the case.)

  • Links from pages with a high PageRank are more valuable than those from pages with a low PageRank.

  • Virtually all incoming links to your site have some kind of value, even if the pages have a very low PageRank or are not contextual. It may not be much of a value, but it’s there. (Assuming, of course, that the page with the link is indexed, that the link is not a nofollow link, that it’s not a redirect, and so on.)

  • The higher the number of outgoing links on a page that has a link pointing to your site, the lower the PageRank transferred to your site. This is because the vote is being shared. Thus, in some cases, a link from a low-PageRank page with no other links may actually be more valuable than a link from a high-PageRank page with many links.

  • Links are even more valuable when they include keywords because keywords tell search engines what the referenced site is about … even if the link is on a low-PageRank page.

  • A link strategy that positions your site as an authority, or a hub, in a web community or neighborhood can be a powerful way to get the attention of the search engines.

  • And don’t forget that, even internal links — links from page to page within your site — are valuable because the keywords in the links tell the search engine what the referenced page is about.