Getting Free PR Backlinks & .GOV + .EDU

This technique is not exactly new for link building, and many of you may already know it, however it is a technique that easily falls in to the grey hat area. Essentially this technique revolves around finding places to post your link that either has PageRank, is on an .EDU, or .GOV domain, or both.

Now there is some debate on whether or not EDU and/or GOV backlinks carry any additional weight over ordinary links, but the reality is that a backlink is a backlink. If there’s a chance that it may help your ratings, even in a 2nd tier search engine like MS Live, then why not try it? PageRank links on the other hand are unquestionably valuable, so let’s explore these methods.

The first criteria we are looking for is a site that will allow us to post a link. That narrows our search down to forums, guestbooks, comment fields, etc. Now, in my opinion if we were to simply spam our URL on these sites, it would be black hat. (more…)

Evaluating the Quality of a Link

Do They Have Quality Inbound Links?
You can tell a lot about a web site by the other sites that link to it. Typically, good sites are registered in some of the top directories like DMOZ or the Yahoo! Directory and have links from other good sites in their same industry.

You can do a ‘linkdomain:’ search on Yahoo! to view some of their best backlinks.

If they have been exchanging links with Viagra, casino, or other high-margin, off topic, cheesy web sites, then they are probably not a legitimate resource and are not a link source worth pursuing.

Does Their Site Offer Quality Content?
If search engines did not exist (more…)

Requesting Links

Not every link you request requires giving a link back. Sometimes it is cheaper and more efficient to just to go target higher quality links. Sometimes you can just request a link and get it by being personal and empathetic. Other times links may require payment.

Be Personal
The best way to go about acquiring links is to be as personal about it as you can. Look around their web site and try to find personal information. The more you find, the better you are.

When e-mailing them, try to submit it to the person who runs the site, not a general info submission. If you can state where your link should go on their site and how it would improve their user experience, you stand a good chance of getting a link.

Off-topic, somewhat personal statements showing you share similar interests may make you seem more human and more connected with them and will make it easier to get links. For instance, if you found out that I like peanut butter, somehow mentioning that or joking about it in the e-mail will make me far more likely to link to your site.