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Bill Platt of the Phantom Writers, invites you to reprint this article in your publication, ezine, or on your website.

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    Using Free-Reprint Articles as a One-Way Link Back Strategy
    Copyright © 2005, Bill Platt

    You may use this image in your ezine or website if you choose to publish my article. --- Bill Platt
    You may use this image in your ezine or website if you choose to publish my article. Click here to see the picture full-sized.--- Bill Platt
    UNDERSTANDING THE IMPORTANCE & CHALLENGE OF GETTING INBOUND LINKS
    
    With the advent of Google's Link Popularity algorythms, people 
    began to aggressively hunt for the almighty inbound links. 
    
    It is hard to get links back to one's site using freebie 
    strategies unless you want to spend your days posting comments 
    on guestbooks and setting up your own doorway pages on alternate 
    sites. 
    
    Google made this a bit tougher. Google started using a second 
    algorythm called PageRank. PageRank is a system that has been 
    designed with the intent of valuing the importance of a page in 
    the Link Popularity calculations. No longer does the sheer number 
    of links to a site matter. Instead, one must look at the quality 
    of the websites that link to their site. 
    
    This is the reason why posting comments on guestbooks barely gets 
    noticed. These are not quality links. 
    
    In this age of multiple domains on a single webserver, Google has 
    taken this into account too. If one has a hundred domains on the 
    same server, pointing back and forth to each other, this is of no 
    real value either as far as Google is concerned. 
    
    What is important to them is when sites that have been given a 
    PageRank of at least 4, and those sites point to another site 
    that does not reside on the same I.P. address or webserver. As 
    far as Google is concerned, this is usually another unrelated 
    person who is pointing to a valuable resource. That is why this 
    type of link has a better overall value to Google.
    
    Anything else is looked upon as an attempt to skew the search 
    results without good cause. 
    
    Google realizes that we all have the need to promote ourselves, 
    and that we will do so with our own selfish interests at heart. 
    Our own selfish interests do not necessarily reflect the 
    interests of Google's search users. So, Google works hard 
    to weed out our selfish attempts at shoddy self-promotion.
    
    
    THE CONCEPT OF RECIPROCAL LINKING
    
    When webmasters realized the complexities of the Google ranking 
    systems, they began to understand that they needed to go off of 
    their own server to find those all-important inbound links. 
    
    Always looking for the easy way, many webmasters turned to 
    reciprocal linking strategies. Those who are selling these 
    concepts are doing so on the premise that it is an easy and 
    inexpensive way to build inbound links. 
    
    To get the reciprocal link, you are supposed to go to the search 
    engines and find a site that looks like it has content similar to 
    yours, but not a direct competitor. 
    
    Next, you should check to see that the site you are looking at 
    has a PageRank of 4 or higher.
    
    Then, you are to put a link to that site on your own domain.
    
    Once you have completed the above steps, you are to contact the 
    webmaster that owns the site you just linked to and to tell them 
    nicely that you have placed a link to their site, and would they 
    be kind enough to put your link on their website?
    
    TIP: My site clearly states that "I do not do reciprocal linking, 
    so do not ask." Believe it or not, I get a half dozen requests 
    every week for reciprocal links. Not only do I know that they did 
    not read my policy on reciprocal links which is linked to from my 
    contact page, I also know that they did not look at my site when 
    they are telling me that my site is related to theirs. ;-)
    
    Read the site policies at the web sites you visit, and you might 
    be able to save yourself some time. 
    
    
    A week after you have done your linking campaign, you must go 
    back to the sites you contacted to see if your link is on their 
    site. If it is not, then you take their link off of your site. 
    
    
    THE LIE OF RECIPROCAL LINKING STRATEGIES
    
    The people who sold you on reciprocal linking policies have 
    usually done so in order to sell you an ebook or their services. 
    Often, they will tell you that it is a simple and inexpensive 
    way to improve your inbound links and link popularity.
    
    They are selling a lie, and let me tell you why.
    
    Most sites that will agree to exchange links with you will do so 
    only if they have a PageRank of less than 4, or if your PageRank 
    is equal to or higher than theirs. 
    
    If your site or their site has a PageRank of less than 4, then 
    the other has not really gained any real value from the exchange.
    
    It takes a lot of time to find people who will link to you, and 
    it takes even more time to validate that the link remains active.
    
    Google has caught onto the reciprocal linking schemes too and 
    has started to penalize sites that provide two-way links to each 
    other, although the penalty is not as drastic as other penalties 
    can be. 
    
    I still have a few two-way links on my own domains, but that is 
    fine, as they are not for the benefit of the search engines, but 
    for the benefit of my visitors.
    
    Personally, my time is much too valuable to play the reciprocal 
    linking game. That is something that you should consider as well.
    
    How long does it take you to score one reciprocal link of any 
    real value? How much is your time worth to you? How many dollars 
    do those link exchanges add to your bottom line? 
    
    In the end, it is about money, and how much money you are 
    generating for the time spent. After all, your time is worth 
    something too, right?
    
    Treat yourself right. How much is your time worth? $10 an hour? 
    $20 an hour? $50 an hour? Now, calculate how many hours you have 
    spent on getting one reciprocal link that actually sent you one 
    visitor. 
    
    Let's suppose that your time is worth $20 an hour. And let us 
    further suppose that it takes you 3 hours to get one quality link 
    to your website. That link has cost you $60. Now how much traffic 
    does that link send you? 
    
    If your reciprocal linking efforts cost more than they return, 
    then they are a fool-hearty adventure. 
    
    
    THERE IS A BETTER WAY
    
    You should not be wasting your time generating reciprocal links. 
    Instead, you should be expending your time and resources 
    generating one-way inbound links. 
    
    Imagine this. Suppose you could send out an advertisement for 
    your business that had a link back to your website included in 
    it. And suppose you would not have to beg or pay big bucks to get 
    your ad published in ezines or on websites. And then suppose that 
    the publishers and webmasters who saw your ad would be clammoring 
    to put it into their ezines or on their websites, at no 
    additional cost to you.
    
    Can you imagine that being possible?
    
    Well, it is possible. And it happens everyday.
    
    Consider this. You are reading this article right now because you 
    are hoping that I can teach you something about how to make your 
    business more profitable. 
    
    And, you are reading this article in an ezine or on a website 
    right now. 
    
    Here is the deal. I am attempting to teach you how to do 
    something or about something. It does not matter what I am 
    teaching, so long as the topic of the article appeals to your 
    interests right now, and it is of interest to the people who, 
    like you, are most likely to visit my site and buy my services.
    
    The ezine publisher or the webmaster read this article and 
    felt that it could be helpful to you and your goals. So, they 
    published it and made it available to you for your review.
    
    When you reach the end of this article, you will see a nine line 
    by 65 character wide advertisement for my own business. In short, 
    it is called the "Resource Box" or the "About the Author 
    Information". 
    
    If I did my job well by attracting the interest of publishers and 
    webmasters and selling them on the idea of publishing my article, 
    and then attracted your attention to this article, I will see the 
    benefits of this endeavor.
    
    If at the conclusion of this article, you feel educated or 
    entertained, then you will be more likely to read my Resource Box 
    and visit my website. Perhaps, you might even decide that you 
    would like to use my services to promote your own business. ;-)
    
    If the publisher or webmaster who printed this article is 
    following the rules of publication, then you will be able to 
    click on the link to my website in the Resource Box.
    
    Please note that I have not included a single link in the body of 
    the article. Links inside an article should be directed only to 
    third-party websites that provide a resource that will support 
    the context of your article. 
    
    For example, my favorite location to be published is: 
    http://www.YourMembership.net  It is one of the few ezines I read 
    weekly, and boy howdy, I am tickled everytime they publish an 
    article of mine. Especially when you stop and realize that their 
    subscriber base consists of more than 700,000 web marketers and 
    that it costs over $2800 to buy a full-run ad there. I was 
    published there again in April of 2005. ;-)
    
    
    YOU CAN DO THIS TOO
    
    I tell people all of the time that they can write articles too. 
    Many don't believe me, but it is true. Everyone has something 
    that they can teach to someone else. 
    
    If you honestly feel that you cannot write your own articles, 
    then pay someone to write them for you. If you can write your 
    own basic and specialized knowledge down on paper, you can hire 
    others to edit it into an article that will be published. 
    
    When you have an article of good quality, you can either submit 
    it yourself to publishers and webmasters as a free-reprint 
    article, or you can pay someone who specializes in that activity 
    to do it for you.
    
    
    IN THE END...
    
    In the end, you will have your own articles in circulation that 
    will be published in ezines and on websites. Ezines can send you 
    a sudden flood of traffic, and websites can deliver the all-
    important one-way inbound links that you need to grow your link 
    popularity and to bring potential customers to your website.
    
    And guess what else? Once your article gets into circulation as a 
    free-reprint article, it can continue to be republished for years 
    to come, generating new traffic and sales for years to come. 
    
    Contrary to the results that are being generated from reciprocal 
    linking, free-reprint articles will actually permit you to earn 
    more money from your promotions than it will cost you to run your 
    promotions. 
    



    Writer's Resource Box:
    Through his article distribution services, Bill Platt can 
    deliver your articles to 17,000+ publishers & webmasters eager 
    for fresh, good quality content.  http://thePhantomWriters.com - 
    When you visit, be sure to use our contact form to ask about the 
    possibility of having us Edit or Write your articles for you. 
    --- 1400+ articles archived for easy reprint.




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